Small Business First (SB1st) Program
Taking Care of Small Business First
The University of California is taking care of business with small, local and disadvantaged businesses by putting them first in our procurement process.
Faster, Easier, Empowering...
Small Business First (SB1st) calls for all non-construction contracts and procurements between $10,000 and $250,000 to be awarded to certified Small Businesses (SBs) and/or Disabled Veteran Business Enterprises (DVBEs), wherever applicable (see exempted categories below).
SB1st uses a streamlined quotation process to increase procurement opportunities for SBs and DVBEs. Our direct 'quote-to-award' ability speeds up and simplifies the procurement process and opens doors to larger opportunities.
To make an award, only one quote is required for purchases below $100,000, and only two quotes are required for purchases between $100,000 – $250,000. (Programs may vary slightly among campuses.)
Get ready to do business with UC:
- Get certified as an SB/DVBE by the State of California – it's easy and free, and offers multiple benefits!
- Register/create a supplier profile in SupplierOne – Supplier search platform that will identify you as a small/DVBE/diverse business to UC buyers
- Register/create a Supplier Profile in CalUsource – UC's eSourcing and public bid site allows you to participate in bid events across the UC system (to compete for contracts above $250,000)
- Familiarize yourself with UC's Terms & Conditions (pdf) requirements
- Check out UC's SB Vendor/Contractor Insurance option – only $750
- Visit UC's Supplier Diversity webpage to access more small & diverse business resources
- Subscribe to get more information about the SB1st program
Find small business opportunities:
Most small business opportunities are at the campus level!
- Build relationships with UC Campus Small Business Officers/Supplier Diversity Coordinators (pdf)
- Visit local UC campus procurement websites and build relationships with UC campus procurement teams and university department buyers
Learn more about doing business with UC via events:
|DESIGN & CONSTRUCTION EVENTS||Dates|
March - Fall 2022
|GENERAL SMALL BUSINESS EVENTS||Dates|
|UC Davis Small Business Expo: general session, breakout sessions, etc.||
|How to Do Business with UC (pdf)||3.30.21|
(Click images and links above to access webinar recordings and slide deck pdfs)
Tap into State of California resources for more opportunities:
- Participate in ongoing small/diverse business events sponsored by the State of California Procurement Dept
- Reciprocity Partners listing: Cities, counties, agencies, or special districts that honor the state of California’s SB/DVBE certification as acceptance into their individual business enterprise programs.
- SB/DVBE Advocates listing: Advocates help SB/DVBEs pursue contract opportunities by working closely with buyers in their department to include SB/DVBEs in state procurement.
Read more about UC's Small Business First program: UC Targets Purchasing Power with Small Business First Program.
Working together, we can help each other thrive!
*Exempted purchase/contract categories:
- Purchases that are sole source, unique professional services, or emergency in nature
- Purchases through existing strategically-sourced agreements
- Federally funded purchases
- Design and construction (governed by UC Facilities Manual and associated policies)
- Interagency agreements
- Federal/local government agreements
- Research sub-awards
- Higher education institution agreements
- Revenue/reimbursement contracts
- Medical and patient care contracts
- Statutorily-exempt, policy-exempt, emergency, proprietary, and/or local assistance/subvention procurements