There are 21.2 million veterans in the U.S., of which 11% (2.4 million) own small businesses. These veteran-owned small businesses employ 5.8 million people and constitute 9% of all small businesses in America. Our veterans are a force to be reckoned with on the battlefields of war and business.
That’s why so many firms have decided to take an active part in supporting veteran-owned small business. Any vet looking to start a small business has a huge bevy of tools at his or her disposal to get the ball rolling.
Patriot Boot Camp, for example, will welcome 50 military veteran and spouse entrepreneurs from around the country to participate in its next technology entrepreneurship boot camp in San Antonio, TX from February 16-18, 2018. Vets will “participate in educational workshops, mentoring sessions with startup experts, and peer networking over three intensive days.”
Another foundation focused on education is the Institute for Veterans and Military Families. The IVMF opens the door to entrepreneurship for veterans by “developing their competencies associated with creating and sustaining an entrepreneurial venture.” They’ve helped nearly 50,000 veterans and military family members through their entrepreneurship training program.
Associated with IVMF is the EBV National Program, named by Inc. Magazine as one of the “10 Best” entrepreneurship programs in the U.S. in 2011. This program is designed to leverage cutting-edge educational practices to “open the door to economic opportunity for our veterans and their families.” EBV graduates have generated over $196 Million in revenue since completing the program.
Veteran Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship focuses on helping female veterans start businesses. V-WISE is a training program that “helps women veterans and female military spouses/partners find their passion and learn the business savvy skills necessary to turn an idea or start-up into a growing venture.” 93% of businesses launched or grown by V-WISE graduates are still in operation today.
Each of the aforementioned programs represents an concerted effort to bring vets into business. So far, it looks like nothing is going to stop our vets from building their American dream.