Networking with other small businesses at Marketplace could lead to short-term and long-term contracting partnerships. Here are a few tips to help you prepare for networking before, during and after the conference.



  1. Have your elevator speech down so if another small business owner ask what you do. You can recite what you do like the lyrics to your favorite song.
  1. Remember that there will be other small business owners attending Marketplace that sell similar or the same products or provide the same services. So, besides being able to talk about what you do, you need to talk about what sets you apart from your competition. This is your opportunity to toot your own horn.
  1. Leave your cell phone (anchor) in your room or car! If you have your face buried in your cell phone or spend all day texting folks are not going to engage you. Talk to other small business owners; find out what products and services they offer. Ask them if they have ever won a local, state or federal contract?
  1. Supply Chain? You might be able to become part of another small businesses supply chain or they may be able to recommend your business to other businesses.
  1. Know what you and others are talking about when discussions about teaming and joint ventures happen.


Subpart 9.6—Contractor Team Arrangements

9.601 Definition.

“Contractor team arrangement,” as used in this subpart, means an arrangement in which—

(1) Two or more companies form a partnership or joint venture to act as a potential prime contractor; or

(2) A potential prime contractor agrees with one or more other companies to have them act as its subcontractors under a specified Government contract or acquisition program.

9.602 General.

(a) Contractor team arrangements may be desirable from both a Government and industry standpoint in order to enable the companies involved to—

(1) Complement each other’s unique capabilities; and

(2) Offer the Government the best combination of performance, cost, and delivery for the system or product being acquired.

(b) Contractor team arrangements may be particularly appropriate in complex research and development acquisitions, but may be used in other appropriate acquisitions, including production.

(c) The companies involved normally form a contractor team arrangement before submitting an offer. However, they may enter into an arrangement later in the acquisition process, including after contract award.

9.603 Policy.

The Government will recognize the integrity and validity of contractor team arrangements; provided, the arrangements are identified and company relationships are fully disclosed in an offer or, for arrangements entered into after submission of an offer, before the arrangement becomes effective. The Government will not normally require or encourage the dissolution of contractor team arrangements.

9.604 Limitations.

Nothing in this subpart authorizes contractor team arrangements in violation of antitrust statutes or limits the Government’s rights to—

(a) Require consent to subcontracts (see Subpart 44.2);

(b) Determine, on the basis of the stated contractor team arrangement, the responsibility of the prime contractor (see Subpart 9.1);

(c) Provide to the prime contractor data rights owned or controlled by the Government;

(d) Pursue its policies on competitive contracting, subcontracting, and component breakout after initial production or at any other time; and

(e) Hold the prime contractor fully responsible for contract performance, regardless of any team arrangement between the prime contractor and its subcontractors. 


A joint venture is: An association of individuals and/or concerns engaging in and carrying out specific or limited purpose business ventures for joint profit to combine efforts, property, money, skill, or knowledge, but not on a continuing or permanent basis for conducting business generally.

No more than 3 contracts over a 2-year period starting from date of submission of first offer (3 in 2 rule). 13 CFR 121.103(h)

The same two (or more) entities may create additional joint ventures, and each is subject to 3-in-2 rule:




However, such a longstanding inter-relationship or contractual dependence between the same joint venture partners will lead to a finding of general affiliation between them.

A joint venture must:

–be in writing

–do business under its own name

–It may (but need not) be in the form of a separate legal entity, and if it is a

separate legal entity it may (but need not) be populated (i.e., have its own separate employees).


  1. Prior to attending Marketplace, review the exhibitor list so you can accomplish research on the primes and agencies that will have booths. Be selective and makes sure you are visiting those booth participants that purchase your products or services.