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Title 13

Displaying title 13, up to date as of 9/21/2021. Title 13 was last amended 9/16/2021.

Title 13

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§ 125.8 What requirements must a joint venture satisfy to submit an offer for a procurement or sale set aside or reserved for small business?

(a) General. A joint venture of two or more business concerns may submit an offer as a small business for a Federal procurement, subcontract or sale so long as each concern is small under the size standard corresponding to the NAICS code assigned to the contract, or qualify as small under one of the exceptions to affiliation set forth in § 121.103(h)(3) of this chapter.

(b) Contents of joint venture agreement.

(1) A joint venture agreement between two or more entities that individually qualify as small need not be in any specific form or contain any specific conditions in order for the joint venture to qualify as a small business.

(2) Every joint venture agreement to perform a contract set aside or reserved for small business between a protégé small business and its SBA-approved mentor authorized by § 125.9 or § 124.520 of this chapter must contain a provision:

(i) Setting forth the purpose of the joint venture;

(ii) Designating a small business as the managing venturer of the joint venture, and designating a named employee of the small business managing venturer as the manager with ultimate responsibility for performance of the contract (the “Responsible Manager”).

(A) The managing venturer is responsible for controlling the day-to-day management and administration of the contractual performance of the joint venture, but other partners to the joint venture may participate in all corporate governance activities and decisions of the joint venture as is commercially customary.

(B) The individual identified as the Responsible Manager of the joint venture need not be an employee of the small business at the time the joint venture submits an offer, but, if he or she is not, there must be a signed letter of intent that the individual commits to be employed by the small business if the joint venture is the successful offeror. The individual identified as the Responsible Manager cannot be employed by the mentor and become an employee of the small business for purposes of performance under the joint venture.

(C) Although the joint venture managers responsible for orders issued under an IDIQ contract need not be employees of the protégé, those managers must report to and be supervised by the joint venture's Responsible Manager;

(iii) Stating that with respect to a separate legal entity joint venture, the small business must own at least 51% of the joint venture entity;

(iv) Stating that the small business participant(s) must receive profits from the joint venture commensurate with the work performed by them, or a percentage agreed to by the parties to the joint venture whereby the small business participant(s) receive profits from the joint venture that exceed the percentage commensurate with the work performed by them, and that at the conclusion of the joint venture contract(s) and/or the termination of a joint venture, any funds remaining in the joint venture bank account shall distributed at the discretion of the joint venture members according to percentage of ownership;

(v) Providing for the establishment and administration of a special bank account in the name of the joint venture. This account must require the signature or consent of all parties to the joint venture for any payments made by the joint venture to its members for services performed. All payments due the joint venture for performance on a contract set aside or reserved for small business will be deposited in the special account; all expenses incurred under the contract will be paid from the account as well;

(vi) Itemizing all major equipment, facilities, and other resources to be furnished by each party to the joint venture, with a detailed schedule of cost or value of each, where practical. If a contract is indefinite in nature, such as an indefinite quantity contract or a multiple award contract where the level of effort or scope of work is not known, the joint venture must provide a general description of the anticipated major equipment, facilities, and other resources to be furnished by each party to the joint venture, without a detailed schedule of cost or value of each, or in the alternative, specify how the parties to the joint venture will furnish such resources to the joint venture once a definite scope of work is made publicly available;

(vii) Specifying the responsibilities of the parties with regard to negotiation of the contract, source of labor, and contract performance, including ways that the parties to the joint venture will ensure that the joint venture and the small business partner(s) to the joint venture will meet the performance of work requirements set forth in paragraph (d) of this section, where practical. If a contract is indefinite in nature, such as an indefinite quantity contract or a multiple award contract where the level of effort or scope of work is not known, the joint venture must provide a general description of the anticipated responsibilities of the parties with regard to negotiation of the contract, source of labor, and contract performance, not including the ways that the parties to the joint venture will ensure that the joint venture and the small business partner(s) to the joint venture will meet the performance of work requirements set forth in paragraph (d) of this section, or in the alternative, specify how the parties to the joint venture will define such responsibilities once a definite scope of work is made publicly available;

(viii) Obligating all parties to the joint venture to ensure performance of a contract set aside or reserved for small business and to complete performance despite the withdrawal of any member;

(ix) Designating that accounting and other administrative records relating to the joint venture be kept in the office of the small business managing venturer, unless approval to keep them elsewhere is granted by the District Director or his/her designee upon written request;

(x) Requiring that the final original records be retained by the small business managing venturer upon completion of any contract set aside or reserved for small business that was performed by the joint venture;

(xi) Stating that annual performance-of-work statements required by paragraph (h)(1) must be submitted to SBA and the relevant contracting officer not later than 45 days after each operating year of the joint venture; and

(xii) Stating that the project-end performance-of-work required by paragraph (h)(2) must be submitted to SBA and the relevant contracting officer no later than 90 days after completion of the contract.

(c) Performance of work.

(1) For any contract set aside or reserved for small business that is to be performed by a joint venture between a small business protégé and its SBA-approved mentor authorized by § 125.9, the joint venture must perform the applicable percentage of work required by § 125.6, and the small business partner to the joint venture must perform at least 40% of the work performed by the joint venture. Except as set forth in paragraph (c)(4) of this section, the 40% calculation for protégé workshare follows the same rules as those set forth in § 125.6 concerning supplies, construction, and mixed contracts, including the exclusion of the same costs from the limitation on subcontracting calculation (e.g., cost of materials excluded from the calculation in construction contracts).

(2) The work performed by the small business partner to a joint venture must be more than administrative or ministerial functions so that it gains substantive experience.

(3) The amount of work done by the partners will be aggregated and the work done by the small business protégé partner must be at least 40% of the total done by the partners. In determining the amount of work done by a mentor participating in a joint venture with a small business protégé, all work done by the mentor and any of its affiliates at any subcontracting tier will be counted.

(4) Work performed by a similarly situated entity will not count toward the requirement that a protégé must perform at least 40% of the work performed by a joint venture.

(d) Certification of compliance. Prior to the performance of any contract set aside or reserved for small business by a joint venture between a protégé small business and a mentor authorized by § 125.9, the small business partner to the joint venture must submit a written certification to the contracting officer and SBA, signed by an authorized official of each partner to the joint venture, stating as follows:

(1) The parties have entered into a joint venture agreement that fully complies with paragraph (b) of this section;

(2) The parties will perform the contract in compliance with the joint venture agreement and with the performance of work requirements set forth in paragraph (c) of this section.

(e) Capabilities, past performance and experience. When evaluating the capabilities, past performance, experience, business systems and certifications of an entity submitting an offer for a contract set aside or reserved for small business as a joint venture established pursuant to this section, a procuring activity must consider work done and qualifications held individually by each partner to the joint venture as well as any work done by the joint venture itself previously. A procuring activity may not require the protégé firm to individually meet the same evaluation or responsibility criteria as that required of other offerors generally. The partners to the joint venture in the aggregate must demonstrate the past performance, experience, business systems and certifications necessary to perform the contract.

(f) Contract execution. The procuring activity will execute a contract set aside or reserved for small business in the name of the joint venture entity or a small business partner to the joint venture, but in either case will identify the award as one to a small business joint venture or a small business mentor-protégé joint venture, as appropriate.

(g) Inspection of records. The joint venture partners must allow SBA's authorized representatives, including representatives authorized by the SBA Inspector General, during normal business hours, access to its files to inspect and copy all records and documents relating to the joint venture.

(h) Performance of work reports. In connection with any contract set aside or reserved for small business that is awarded to a joint venture between a protégé small business and a mentor authorized by § 125.9, the small business partner must describe how it is meeting or has met the applicable performance of work requirements for each contract set aside or reserved for small business that it performs as a joint venture.

(1) The small business partner to the joint venture must annually submit a report to the relevant contracting officer and to the SBA, signed by an authorized official of each partner to the joint venture, explaining how the performance of work requirements are being met for each contract set aside or reserved for small business that is performed during the year.

(2) At the completion of every contract set aside or reserved for small business that is awarded to a joint venture between a protégé small business and a mentor authorized by § 125.9, and upon request by SBA or the relevant contracting officer, the small business partner to the joint venture must submit a report to the relevant contracting officer and to SBA, signed by an authorized official of each partner to the joint venture, explaining how and certifying that the performance of work requirements were met for the contract, and further certifying that the contract was performed in accordance with the provisions of the joint venture agreement that are required under paragraph (b) of this section.

(i) Basis for suspension or debarment. For any joint venture between a protégé small business and a mentor authorized by § 125.9, the Government may consider the following as a ground for suspension or debarment as a willful violation of a regulatory provision or requirement applicable to a public agreement or transaction:

(1) Failure to enter a joint venture agreement that complies with paragraph (b) of this section;

(2) Failure to perform a contract in accordance with the joint venture agreement or performance of work requirements in paragraph (c) of this section; or

(3) Failure to submit the certification required by paragraph (d) of this section or comply with paragraph (g) of this section.

(j) Compliance with performance of work requirements. Any person with information concerning a joint venture's compliance with the performance of work requirements may report that information to SBA and/or the SBA Office of Inspector General.

[81 FR 48585, July 25, 2016, as amended at 81 FR 94941, Dec. 27, 2016; 85 FR 66193, Oct. 16, 2020]