Air Force Materiel Command hits record, spends nearly $10B on small businesses

Wright-Patterson-based command reviews fiscal year 2023 spending

Air Force Materiel Command, headquartered at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, said it ended fiscal year 2023 with record small business and contracting numbers.

The AFMC Small Business program had a record year in fiscal 2023, with $9.7 billion in awards, representing a $1 billion increase over fiscal 2022, AFMC said Tuesday.

The command’s previous record in this area was $9.3 billion.

AFMC controls a substantial chunk of the annual Air Force budget on operations and needs across the globe. The federal government’s fiscal year ends on Sept. 30.

Working with the Department of Defense is getting easier for small businesses, said Dennis Andersh, president and chief executive of Beavercreek-based Parallax Advanced Research, a non-profit research institute.

“It’s getting easier but it’s still a work in progress,” Andersh said. “There’s a lot of good technology out there that doesn’t make it to the Department of Defense.”

Overall, the AFMC contracting team obligated $64.3 billion this year and completed 58,600 federal acquisition regulation (FAR)-based contract actions in fiscal 2023, the command said.

These numbers represent 72% of total Air Force spending and 52% of all Air Force contract actions, the command said in a release Tuesday. The team also completed 3,400 non-FAR-based contract actions, obligating $3.09 billion in this area.

Both FAR-based and non-FAR-based actions represented increases over fiscal 2022 numbers, with FAR-based obligations growing by $6.9 billion in fiscal ‘23 and non-FAR-based obligations increasing by $1.7 billion, an 81% increase, the command said.

”This was a challenging year, but our team executed flawlessly, ensuring we would end the fiscal year in a solid position for FY24,” Brig. Gen. Frank Verdugo, AFMC comptroller, said in the statement released by the Department of Defense. “We have an amazing team of experts here at AFMC who work diligently throughout the year to ensure our no-fail critical missions for the Department of the Air Force succeed across all mission sets.”

The command said it also executed $3.1 billion in operations and maintenance funds in the most recent fiscal year, a 10.7% increase in funding over fiscal 2022.

The command also said $31.7 million was spent in support of Ukraine.

“I could not be prouder of our AFMC teams as they finished a challenging FY23 and face an equally, if not more challenging FY24. Regardless of the hurdles, I am confident we will ensure our warfighters have what they need to execute our critical missions for the Air Force,” Verdugo said in the command’s statement.

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