What is a joint venture and how is it counted towards minority business enterprise (“MBE”) participation goals in Baltimore City?

By:  James R. Benjamin Jr., Esquire                                     jbenjamin@pklaw.com

Under the Baltimore City Code, a joint venture is an association between at least two (2) business enterprises that provides for the sharing of economic interest. Generally, the joint venture is entered into for mutual benefit with the understanding that each business enterprise in the joint venture is to share in its profits and losses.

Should a business certified as an MBE seek to enter into a joint venture, the business owner should keep in mind that a bidder for a contract in Baltimore City may count towards the contract goal the portion of its expenditure to a joint venture that is equal to the percentage of the MBE’s participation in the joint venture.  The MBE member of the joint venture must have an interest in the control, management, risks and operation of the joint venture that is commensurate with the member’s percentage of ownership. In addition, the MBE member must be responsible for a clearly defined portion of the work to be performed with its own forces equal to its share in the ownership, control and management of the joint venture.

Certification of a business can be viable tool for developing and maintaining business relationships. Businesses seeking certification as an MBE in Baltimore City may want to consider obtaining legal advice concerning eligibility requirements for certification prior to applying for certification.


This information is provided for general information only. None of the information provided herein should be construed as providing legal advice or a separate attorney client relationship. Applicability of the legal principles discussed may differ substantially in individual situations. You should not act upon the information presented herein without consulting an attorney of your choice about your particular situation. While PK Law has taken reasonable efforts to insure the accuracy of this material, the accuracy cannot be guaranteed and PK Law makes no warranties or representations as to its accuracy.