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State of Arkansas Business Certifications

by Debra Garcia - October 24, 2018

Own your own Arkansas-based business? 

There are two state of Arkansas business certifications you can apply for: 

  1. Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE)
  2. Minority and Woman Owned Business Enterprise (MWBE) 

Disadvantaged Business Enterprise is a certification program that the Arkansas Department of Transportation (ADOT) administers. The overall goal of ADOT is to set-aside 8.58% of all their federal dollars especially for DBE certified businesses.

 You may be eligible to participate in this program if:

  • Your business is for profit
  • Your business is at least 51% owned by a socially and economically disadvantaged individual
  • Your business meets the Small Business Administration’s size standard
  • Does not exceed $23.98 million in gross annual receipts 

How can you apply?

Minority and Woman Owned Business Enterprise

Minority and Women Owned Buisiness Enterprise is a certification program that is administered by Arkansas Economic Development Commission. In addition to increasing opportunities with the State of Arkansas, certification benefits include notification of training events, workshops, network opportunities and educational opportunities.

Certified Minority and Women-Owned Business Enterprises will receive an official certificate and designation as a "Certified Minority and Women-Owned Business" in the Directory. This will allow your company to have more visibility to State companies. 

Below are the eligibility requirements for your business:

  • The business must be at least 51 percent minority or women-owned, operated and managed on a daily basis.
  • The business must have been in operation for at least two (2) years prior to applying for minority or women-owned business status.
  • The business must have a legal presence (license) to operate in Arkansas.
  • The majority owner(s) must be a legal permanent resident of Arkansas.
  • The majority owner(s) must be a U.S. Citizen.
  • The majority owner(s) must be of a designated group: African-American, Hispanic-American, American Indian, Asian American, Pacific Islander, Service-Disabled Veteran or Female.
  • Applicants must have Federal Transcripts showing proof of business income tax filings with the Internal Revenue Service AND state income tax returns filed with the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration for the previous two (2) years.
  • The business must be a for-profit business and generate less than $10,000,000 in revenue annually.

How can you apply?

All requirements and contact information can be found at: or by contacting Karen Castle at

 Debra Garcia