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The CNMI Small Business Development Center Network delivers professional, high quality, individualized business advising and technical assistance to existing small businesses and pre-venture entrepreneurs.

CNMI SBDC Network and Guam APEX Accelerator Successfully Complete Federal Contracting 101 Training


Tuesday, May 28, 2024

CNMI SBDC Network and the Guam APEX Accelerator 

Successfully Complete Federal Contracting 101 Training in Saipan

(Saipan, MP) The CNMI Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network and the Guam APEX Accelerator, formerly known as the Guam Procurement Technical Assistance Center (PTAC) Office, are pleased to announce the successful completion of its no-cost training titled “Federal Contracting 101”. This collaborative effort completes the second training on the Municipality of Saipan for the month of May, and has equipped an additional 20 local entrepreneurs with vital skills needed to navigate the federal contracting landscape.

Facilitated by Boris Hertslet, Program Manager of the Office of the Guam APEX Accelerator, the training session took place on Wednesday, May 22, 2024 from 4:30 PM to 7:30 PM at the Northern Marianas College campus, CNMI SBDC’s host institution. The training focused on the intricacies of the registration process of government procurement website and also provided an outline for developing an effective capabilities statement. These skills are crucial for local businesses aiming to secure service contracts with the federal government. 

Program Manager Hertslet highlighted that a significant number of small businesses in the Commonwealth qualify for various certifications such as the 8(a) Disadvantaged, HUBZone, Women-owned, and Veteran-owned program certifications under the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA). When certified, businesses have the ability to gain preferential points during the procurement selection process, increasing their chances of being awarded a contract under the federal government procurement system. However, despite Commonwealth-based businesses’ eligibility under these programs, many are not availing and taking advantage of such programs.

The Federal Contracting 101 training is particularly significant in the context of the ongoing military buildup within the Marianas. This initiative is designed to position local businesses to compete effectively for federal contracts, thereby contributing to the economic development of the CNMI. By enhancing the capabilities of our local entrepreneurs, the SBDC is not only fostering business growth, but also ensuring that businesses can fully participate, and successfully receive contracted awards as a direct benefit from availing of such opportunities presented by the federal government specifically, through Department of Defense open invitations to bid. 

Boris Hertslet, with his extensive experience and expertise, provided invaluable insights and practical advice to the training participants. His guidance has empowered these entrepreneurs to confidently approach federal contracting opportunities, vital for business expansion and success.

“We are pleased with the turnout and the positive feedback received from the participants,” said Nadine C. Deleon Guerrero, Network Director of the CNMI SBDC. “This training is a testament of our commitment to support and develop our local businesses, ensuring they are well-prepared to capitalize on the economic opportunities arising from the ongoing military buildup within our region.”

In April 2024, the Tinian SBDC completed its two-part training series on Federal Contracting 101 on the Municipality of Tinian as presented by business owner Phillip Mendiola Long. In May 2024, the Rota SBDC completed its inaugural Federal Contracting 101 training opportunity where the session was also presented by the Office of the Guam Apex Accelerator’s Boris Hertslet.

The CNMI SBDC Network and the Office of the Guam APEX Accelerator remain dedicated to providing ongoing support and resources to our islands’ local businesses. This training is one of many initiatives aimed at fostering a robust and competitive business environment in the CNMI. If you are an interested business owner interested in attending these past training sessions, but were unable to due to scheduling conflicts, please call our Lead Center to express your interest in attending a future session. The SBDC looks forward to hosting more federal contracting training opportunities before the end of the year, and welcome those interested in learning more to sign up to be an SBDC client through our website at

For more information about other upcoming no-cost training sessions and resources, please contact the CNMI SBDC Network at (670) 237-6888 or visit our website at For direct assistance from the Office of the Guam Apex Accelerator, please visit:

The CNMI SBDC Network promotes a business-friendly economic infrastructure in the community, builds entrepreneurial capacity and financial literacy within that community, and provides current and nascent small businesses with the technical assistance, counseling, training, and support they need to innovate, adapt, and grow. 

The CNMI Small Business Development Center Network (CNMI SBDC) Network comprises the CNMI SBDC lead center located in Saipan, the Rota SBDC, and Tinian SBDC. The CNMI SBDC Network is partially funded by a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and the Northern Marianas College. All opinions, conclusions, or recommendations expressed are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA. Requests for reasonable accommodations for persons with disabilities will be made if requested at least two weeks in advance. Language assistance services are available for limited English proficient individuals with at least two weeks advance notice. For arrangements, please contact your local SBDC at P. O. Box 501250 Saipan, MP 96950, Tel: (670) 237-6888, or email SBDC Administrative Office Manager Services are extended to the public on a non-disciplinary basis.

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