SME Rating and Accreditation
About the SME Rating and Accreditation “SRA” 
SME Rating & Accreditation” is an initiative taken from Qatar Development Bank to:
·         Foster business partnerships between local SMEs and local buyer contractors.
·         Institute a robust model for SME Rating and Accreditation system to enhance access to finance for SMEs and strengthen business credentials for registration & Pre-qualification with large buyers.
·         Deploy a credible framework to assess and evaluate SMEs intending to execute contracts for government, semi-government and private entities.
 SRA is an Independent, third party validation and accreditation program. MINHA SRA service is being offered by QDB to existing Qatari SMEs in obtaining a subsidized and professional consultancy services. Through the provision of SRA certification it will assist SMEs in developing and enhancing their existing business to achieve sustainability and competitiveness to improve the business.
What is Rating?
Rating’ is a comprehensive analysis of the business and entails an assessment of the business model, the promoter and management, industry and the financials of the business. A Rating Certificate is an indicator of the probability of business success and is valid for one year from the date of issue. Rating certificate is given in the Scale 1 to 5 (1 being the best and 5 needs improvement in the business).  The following four areas are looked upon in detail for Rating:
1.      Management
2.      Industry
3.      Business Model
4.      Finance
What is Accreditation?
 Accreditation is an evaluation of the ‘Contract Execution Capabilities of the Business’. It involves an assessment of the business capabilities (Manpower , Infrastructure, Technology etc.), past experience and track record, health & safety, quality management  and other parameters impacting the contracting capability of the business.  Accreditation certificate will be given only when SME is rated with scale 1 or 2 rating.
There are five different variants of accreditation depending on type of contract:
1.      Manufacturing
2.      Supply
3.      Basic Services
4.      Technical Services
5.      Construction. 
The SME is accredited based on the following seven parameters:
1.      Capability
2.      Relevant Experience & Track Record
3.      Credibility & Reputation
4.      Health & Safety
5.      Financial Standing
6.      Quality Management
7.      Commitment
Steps for SRA Certification:
1.      SME registers with QDB.
2.      QDB completes the technical verification of SME and accepts the Application.
3.      QDB approved service provider (third party) will visit SME to complete the rating assessment as per the QDB SRA model.
4.      QDB validates and evaluates the assessment report and issue the rating Certificate.
5.      SME rated with 3, 4 or 5 will be recommended to various business improvement services offered by QDB.
6.      SME rated with 1 or 2 are recommended for Accreditation certificate which will be done by another third party for further assessment as per the QDB SRA model.
7.      QDB validates and evaluates the assessment report and issue the Accreditation Certificate.
What is the benefit of SRA?
1.      After SRA certification SMEs can access various privilege services like SME Tender Bond Exemption Service and bouquet of business & consultancy services offered by QDB.
2.      Exemption from paying the ‘Tender Bid Bond’, ‘Performance Bond’ and ‘Advance Payment Guarantee’ subject to the buyer’s acceptance.
3.      SME client Foster business partnerships between local SMEs and local buyers / International contractors.
4.      Institute a robust model for SME Rating to enhance access to finance for SMEs, strengthen business credentials for registration & Pre-qualification with large buyers.
5.      Deploy a credible framework to assess and evaluate SMEs intending to execute contracts for government, semi-government and private entities.
6.      Probability of higher tolerance advantage for pricing bids
7.      Automatic pre-qualification registration within buyer’s vendor lists
8.      Improve your business with more government procurement engagements.
9.      Improve the comfort level with prospective/existing lenders.
10.  Negotiate better terms on the basis of the credit quality reflected by the Rating.
11.  Reduce the time involved in obtaining loan approvals.
12.  Project a better image to prospective/existing trade partners.
13.  Carry out self-evaluation and take timely and corrective measures for improvement.
14.  Increase SME’s ability to negotiate on better procurement terms.
15.  Identify business gaps/business opportunities and growth potentials.
16.  Enhance SME’s financial situation to facilitate securing credit lines from financial institutions.
What is the impact of SME Tender Bond Exemption Service?
1.      It will encourage local SMEs to participate in more tenders.
2.      SME do not have burden of blocking the bond amount.
3.      It will encourage more market players.
4.      This Promotion service will increase the local content.
5.      Tender Bond Exemption Service will enable QDB to know the total spend retained in-country that can benefit businesses, contribute to skill enhancement and stimulate productivity in the Qatari economy.
6.      Facilitate SMEs access to procurement of large buyers through a single platform to access all government tenders.
7.      Tender Bond Exemption Service captures the share of products made and services offered by Buyers and local SMEs.
8.      To Increase of local supply sourcing mainly through tendering, long-term business agreements, and business enhancement programs.
9.      To develop adequate infrastructure to support local enterprise through government driven projects.
10.  To Implement Central Supplier Registration and Tendering System as a single window system.
 
As per Tender Law No 24 of 2015 regulating tenders and auctions in the State of Qatar, and subject to the buyer’s acceptance, the Certificate of Accreditation qualifies the beneficiary to be exempted from the requirement to submit a Bid bond, Performance bond and Advanced Payment Guarantee during its validity period. All assessments for Rating and Accreditation are conducted by Third party agency approved by QDB