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City of Asheville Business Inclusion Office

P. O. Box 7148 Asheville, NC 28802



Minority and Woman Business Enterprise Certification Form

Thank you for your interest in becoming a Certified Minority or Woman Business Enterprise (MWBE) with the City of Asheville. Please complete this application in full. In order for us to process your application, you must submit all supporting and required documentation. The City of Asheville reserves the right to request additional information as needed to verify eligibility. A copy of your completed application will be emailed to you after you submit it, please keep that copy for your records. Please contact the Asheville Business Inclusion (ABI) Office if you have any questions or need assistance completing this form.

Note: Please be prepared to complete this application process in one session as you will not be able to save and continue later.

To start, be sure you are registered as a vendor with the City. To register, click below.

How to register as a Vendor for The City of Asheville 

Items You Will Need:

Completed W-9

Your NIGP Code(s)

Depending on your business structure, you may need your Social Security Number or EIN (FID)

***The information on this form needs to match the information on your W-9 

We highly encourage you to have your completed W-9 and your certification copy ready to upload; additionally, have your identification number and NIGP Code ready to be inputted into the application. 


Application Submission Steps:

Visit the Vendor Registration form

Inside the Form - Choose One Below:

New vendor if you have never been a vendor for the City;

or Existing vendor updating my information if you are already a vendor for the City of Asheville

While you're completing the form:

Under Identification, choose SSN or FID

1099 Information From W-9--- CLICK YES

Input your NGIP Code(s) 

Under General Contact Information, Accounts Payable Contact Information, and Purchasing Contact Information, you can list yourself unless you have someone else doing those things for you.

Is the business an MWBE (Minority and women-owned business enterprise) -- If applicable, CLICK YES

If yes, choose the Type of MWBE Minority-Owned Business Certified? If applicable, CLICK YES

If yes, submit certification documents (note, since you're registering as a vendor before completing City of Asheville MWBE Certification, you will not need to worry about submitting your City Certification at this time. This upload is just for HUB, NCDOT, or certifications from other agencies). You should still indicate that you are a minority-owned or woman-owned business.

Once your W9 has been uploaded, click Submit in the bottom right of the page. 

Other (Non-City of Asheville) Certifications:

There are several Minority and Woman Business Enterprises (MWBE) certifications that the City of Asheville recognizes. Here are the links:

North Carolina Historically Underutilized Businesses (HUB) Certification

NCDOT DBE Certification 

Please return to this MWBE Certfication Application after you have registered as a vendor.


About the Vendor Application:

About Certifications: 

END of vendor registration instructions. Continue to apply for the MWBE Certfication.

Is your business already HUB Certified (Historically Underutilized Businesses)?

That's great!

Since your business is already HUB Certified, there is a shorter form for you to fill out.

Please visit this link and complete the form for businesses already HUB Certified.

If you are applying as a Minority Business Enterprise* (MBE),         

  you will need to complete the affidavit at this link first. When you're finished, download it and you will attach it to this application later on. You will also receive a copy by email.

Please upload the "Ethnicity Affidavit". (If you have just filled it out, please check your email and attach it here.)

Click Here to Upload


  • All applicants will need to provide images of the front and back of their driver's license

  • In addition, please gather this information available as it applies to your business:

  • Please note that you may only apply for either MBE or WBE certification. If you are a business 51% or more owned by a woman who is a member of a minority group, you must apply as an MBE due to the State of North Carolina’s requirements and definitions of these categories. If you are a business 51% or more owned by a woman who is white, you should apply as a WBE.

  • Amounts of business revenue derived from other business entities, if any

  • Information about assets, spaces, or equipment shared with, leased, or borrowed from other business entities, if any

  • Amounts of loans or financing received from individuals or other business entities that are not banks or financial institutions, if any.

Minority / Woman Business Enterprise Certification Form (Page 1 of 2)



Asheville Relevant Market Area” means the Asheville regional area based on the most recent disparity study. Through November 1, 2023, this includes Buncombe, Haywood, Jackson, Transylvania, Henderson, Polk, Rutherford, McDowell, Yancey and Madison counties. Mecklenburg County is included for professional services (Architect, Engineer, Surveyor, and Construction Manager at Risk) only.

An “Eligible Owner”  (a) Owns a legal and equitable interest in the Applicant Business in his or her own name (with the ownership of all Eligible Owners being 51% or more); (b) Acquired the interest in a real and substantial arms-length transaction utilizing real and substantial consideration; (c) Acquired the interest with his or her own financial or equivalent resources or has put his or her own financial resources at risk in the operation of the Applicant Business; (d) Is not currently an official, officer or employee of the City; (e) Is either a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, or has a valid work visa from the U.S. government appropriate for the type of work the Business Enterprise performs

Minority” means only those racial or ethnicity classifications, identified by a study conducted in accordance with the Asheville Business Inclusion Policy, that have been subjected to discrimination in the relevant marketplace and that have been adversely affected in their ability to obtain contracts with the City of Asheville:

  • African American or Black, that is, a person having origins in any of the black racial groups of Africa;

  • Hispanic, that is, a person of Spanish or Portuguese culture having origins in Mexico, South or Central America, or other Caribbean Islands, regardless of race;

  • Asian, that is, a person having origins in any other Far East, Southeast Asia and Asia, Indian subcontinent, or Pacific Islands

  • Native American or American Indian, that is, a person having origins in any of the original Indian people of North America

Owner” means any person or entity having a greater than five percent (5%) ownership interest, whether as a shareholder, partner, limited partner, sole proprietor, etc. 

Significant Business Presence” means the business enterprise is headquartered in the Asheville Regional Area, where at least 25% of its total employees are regularly based, and where the business enterprise conducts its functions. A location used only as a post office box, mail drop or message center, or any combination along those lines is not considered a Significant Business Presence.

Eligibility for MWBE Certification

To be eligible for MWBE Certification, your business must meet the following requirements. Click "yes" next to each item if it applies to your business:

Are you a registered vendor with the City of Asheville?

Look up your Vendor number here. Please give the vendor lookup tool a minute to load.

Please register as a vendor before continuing with this application.

Return to the first page of this form for instructions, or complete the Vendor Registration Form here.

Does your business or institution have a Significant Business Presence* in the Asheville Relevant Market Area*?

Based on this answer, we will need further information. Please reach out in the next 48 hours via email to Please continue filling out this application.

Please enter the address where your business is headquartered.

Are your daily operations managed and controlled by an Eligible Owner(s)* of your business?

Based on this answer, we will need further information. Please reach out in the next 48 hours via email to Please continue filling out this application.

Is your business a for-profit business?

Based on this answer, we will need further information. Please reach out in the next 48 hours via email to Please continue filling out this application.

Eligibility (Cont.)

The following will indicate what your business is eligible for. Click “yes” next to each item if it applies to your business:

Is this business 51% owned by a member(s) of a minority group*

Please complete the ethnicity affidavit, if you haven't already done so, at this link. When done, download it and attach it (next question). Note, you will also receive a copy by email.

Please upload the "Ethnicity Affidavit". (If you have just filled it out, please check your email and attach it here.)

Click Here to Upload

Is 51% owned by one or more Eligible Owner(s) who is a white woman

If you have answered 'no' to BOTH questions above, please close this application and contact the ABI Office at 828-747-8168. 

General Owner Information

Contact information

Number of employees

Are there any other Eligible Owners*?

Minority / Woman Business Enterprise Certification Form (Page 2 of 2)



Key Personnel” means any owner, shareholder, partner, director, officer, or person in a management role of the applicant business. Key Personnel includes but is not limited to all persons who are counted as Eligible Owners for purposes of applying for SBE certification. 

Related Industry” means the same general industry or field as the applicant business, or a business that contracts with other businesses in the applicant business’ industry or field. For instance, plumbing would be a Related Industry to general construction.

Significant Connection” means any of the following: a) 5% or greater ownership interest (as shareholder, partner, etc); b) membership on the board of directors; c) employment relationship; or d) ability to control decisions.

Affiliate Information

Do any of the Key Personnel* of the applicant have a Significant Connection* with another business?

Do any family members of the Key Personnel* have a Significant Connection* with another business in a related industry*?

Has more than twenty-five percent (25%) of the applicant business annual revenue in any of the past three (3) years derived from either: (a) a single business entity, or (b) a group of business entities that share the same company?

Does the applicant business share any of the following with another person or business entity: a) office space, warehouse space, or other facilities, b) assets or equipment; or c) employees?

Has the applicant business, within the past 5 years, received any loans or other financing from any individual or other business that is not a bank or lending institution?

Additional Information

Are you interested in taking advantage of any training opportunities with the City of Asheville or other local business development organizations, such as applying for licenses, learning how to prepare a bid, financial training, marketing training, etc?

If you need help with licensing, we highly recommend you take advantage of these opportunities.

Are you interested in learning more about local loan and collateral pools for small business owners offered by local organizations?

Do we have your permission to keep you informed of upcoming opportunities by adding your email to the Asheville Business Inclusion Office’s newsletter contact list? You are free to unsubscribe from this newsletter at any time.

Required Documentation

Image of driver's license or state-issued identification card

Click Here to Upload

Please upload any licenses, permits, and/or professional designations if required.

Click Here to Upload



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