Small Business Enterprise Program


The City of St. Petersburg’s Small Business Enterprise (SBE) program, coordinated by The Greenhouse team, fosters growth in the economy and provides opportunities for participation in city construction projects and the procurement of Goods & Services.

The SBE program gives smaller businesses a chance to gain exposure to large-scale projects and experience working alongside big firms. The 3-year certification is free with required training, covers a 5-county area and is race and gender neutral.


  1. Independently owned, operated and controlled
  2. Not dominant in its field of operation
  3. Serves a commercially useful function
  4. Has been in operation for one year
  5. Defined as an SBE local small business:
    • Has 50 full-time, permanent employees or less
    • Has an annual sales volume (averaged over the previous three years) of $5 million or less for Goods/Services/Supplies, or $8 million or less for
    • Must be domiciled in Pinellas, Hillsborough, Pasco, Manatee or Polk Counties (a post office box is not acceptable as a business address)


  • Enhanced contracting opportunities
  • Discounts for goods and services (1 – 15% for bids and quotes)
  • Technical assistance and financial assistance referral
  • Solicitation of certified SBEs for all sheltered market contracts
  • Specialty workshops, seminars and training opportunities
Small businesses that become SBE certified will have enhanced opportunities to do business with the City of
St. Petersburg. There are two ways to participate:
             1) Goods and Services – For purchases of certain goods and services, the City of St. Petersburg will directly consult the SBE registry.
             2) Construction – Certified SBEs compete for City of St. Petersburg contract opportunities in a sheltered market, in which contracts are selected and                                     specifically set aside for small businesses on a competitive bid or negotiated basis. Certified companies will also be listed on the City’s SBE Directory for                         preferred subcontracting opportunities.


  1. New certifications – register your company with the City of St. Petersburg Procurement & Supply Management Department.
  2. Go to
  3. Click Apply for/Renew Certification.
  4. New certifications – click Create Account under New Certification
    • Re-certifications – under Renew Your Certification, click the Login button
  5. Fill out and submit application.
  6. Satisfy SBE workshop requirements detailed below.

Review will take up to 30 days depending on workload and additional document requests.  Greenhouse staff will contact you if there are deficiencies or additional information needed.


The Greenhouse offers SBE-specific training designed to build SBE capacity and ensure competency in basic topic areas for business growth.  Effective August 1, 2009, all SBEs are required to attend the following core workshops:

  • How the City Buys
  • Disaster Preparedness/Recovery for Small Business Owners
  • City Services and Incentives

In addition to the above core workshops, companies are required to attend the following business-related workshops based on specialty:

Companies Providing Construction Services

  • Basics of Bonding (Part 1 or 2)
  • Estimating and Bidding

Companies Providing Goods and Services

  • Pricing for Profit

Workshops must be taken within 90 days of certification/re-certification (or certification/recertification will be revoked).  Workshops only have to be taken once for current and future certification periods, and any member of your staff can attend the workshops on behalf of the company.  If you have already taken any, your company is not required to take them again.  For workshop details, dates and registration, visit the Greenhouse Trainings & Workshops Calendaror call (727) 893-7767.


Are you in need of a SBE-certified company to furnish goods or for construction-related purposes? Visit our SBE Search Page and click “Search Registered Directory”.  This is searchable by business name, specialization, location and contact information.

Small Business Enterprise (SBE) vendors are only certified as meeting the established criteria of the existing SBE program and not certified as qualified in any other area.  The city is not responsible for and disclaims any representation made by any SBE vendor.  You must do the appropriate due diligence before selecting an SBE vendor.


Please contact SBE staff for more information or questions:

Eric Lavina, Economic Development Analyst
(727) 893-7539

Lowell Atkinson, Economic Development Specialist
(727) 551-3408

Ondria McDonald, Administrative Secretary
(727) 893-7767

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