Tips for Aspiring Public Entrepreneurs: Accessing the Federal Marketplace


Entrepreneurs are often thought of as operating only in the private sphere.  However, there is quite a bit of room for public entrepreneurs who are prepared to take on the unique barriers of entry into the federal marketplace.

One of the largest demands public entrepreneurs must meet is becoming an approved vendor with the GSA. Prior to beginning any work with the U.S. government, an entrepreneur must be approved by the General Services Administration (GSA) as a government vendor.  The GSA serves as the sole purchasing agent for the United States government and only works with approved vendors.  Although this helps simplify the buying process and ensure the government pays the lowest price possible for requested goods, it can be difficult for a new entrepreneur or startup to meet the restrictive requirements of a GSA vendor.

To become an approved vendor with the GSA you must complete stacks of paperwork, or spend quite a bit of money to hire someone to do it for you. You’ll also need to show 2 years of related work history and at least $25,000 in annual revenue each of those two years.  Then, once your application is complete and has been submitted to the GSA, it generally takes 18-24 months for the approval process to be completed.

After you’re application has cleared there may also be inspections or clearances required depending on what types of projects you’re seeking.  Other government approved policies and procedures will also need to be in place in order to obtain and maintain contracts.

For those aspiring public entrepreneurs who want to work with the federal government but can’t afford the time and expense that’s required, the Innové Entrepreneur Platform offers a different option.  Members gain access to our in-place GSA contracting vehicles, lead generation, and proposal resources to eliminate the typical 18-24 month delay.  Joining the Entrepreneur Platform also affords members access to our Top Security Facility Clearance and our other government compliant resources to further facilitate participation in the federal marketplace.

To learn more about the Entrepreneur Platform and how it can help aspiring public entrepreneurs remove the barriers of entry into the federal marketplace and more, please contact Innové COO Blaine Lewis at