Top 5 Veteran-Owned Businesses to Inspire You

The success of veteran-owned businesses is an inspiration for entrepreneurs. One example of this is the story of Mark Doyle. A former U.S Navy serviceman, he started his own business as a service provider to other veterans after leaving the military in 2011. Since then, he has grown his company into one of the leading providers of services and products catering to veterans throughout the country. His successful venture serves as an example that any entrepreneur – regardless of background or experience – can make it if they put their heart and soul into it.

This article will look at five more examples of inspiring veteran-owned businesses which have enjoyed great success despite challenging economic times and tight competition. From small local operations to large international conglomerates, these innovative companies prove that with hard work and dedication anything is possible. The stories behind each venture provide valuable lessons on how to navigate difficult environments while maintaining high standards and customer satisfaction levels.

Finally, this article seeks to highlight the importance of supporting veteran-owned businesses by showcasing their successes and encouraging others to follow in their footsteps in order to create a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem that benefits all involved parties.

What is

A veteran-owned business is any company or enterprise that is owned and operated by a veteran of the armed forces. These businesses are typically started after military service, although some veterans have been operating their own companies prior to enlisting in the military. For example, Jennifer Huntley served as an Army medic before launching her apparel design business called “JH Designs” which specializes in designing t-shirts for active duty personnel and veterans alike. Her story serves as inspiration for other veterans who want to pursue entrepreneurship post-service.

There are many benefits associated with starting a veteran-owned business, including access to resources specifically tailored towards helping them succeed such as small business grants through the Veteran’s Affairs office, mentorship opportunities from established entrepreneurs, and specialized training programs. Additionally, these businesses often offer unique products or services that can fill specific needs within the community. Here are three reasons why supporting veteran-owned businesses is important:

  • They provide jobs for fellow veterans returning home from service who may struggle to find employment due to lack of experience or disability stemming from combat injuries.
  • Supporting veteran-owned businesses helps strengthen local economies since money spent at these establishments stays within communities instead of going elsewhere.
  • It allows people to show appreciation for those who have served our country without necessarily needing words; plus they get quality goods and services while doing it!

The success stories of veteran-owned businesses help pave the way for others looking to start their own ventures upon transitioning back into civilian life. From inspiring owners like Jennifer Huntley to lesser known but equally successful endeavors like Graphene Frontiers—a nanotechnology firm based out of Philadelphia founded by two Navy vets—there is no shortage of motivation when it comes to taking on new challenges after serving in the military. With this in mind, it is clear why giving support to veteran-owned businesses can make a real difference both economically and socially speaking.

Importance of Supporting Veteran-Owned Businesses

The importance of investing in veteran-owned businesses is undeniable. Businesses owned or operated by veterans contribute to the economy and provide jobs, allowing for economic growth and stability. Furthermore, these businesses often serve as a source of inspiration to other aspiring entrepreneurs looking to launch their own ventures. By supporting veteran-owned businesses, we can show our appreciation for those who have served our country with honor and integrity.

For example, many veterans are utilizing their skills and experience from serving in the military to start successful businesses that offer goods or services within their communities. These companies create job opportunities for others while also providing essential items or services that benefit society as a whole. The following three points offer insight into why it’s important to support veteran-owned businesses:

  • It helps strengthen local economies – Investing in small business owners allows them to expand their operations, hire more employees, and make investments back into the community they operate within.
  • It provides an opportunity for potential success – Supporting veteran-owned businesses gives individuals a chance to explore new career paths while contributing something meaningful towards the greater good.
  • It shows gratitude for all they have done – Veterans put themselves on the line to protect freedom and democracy; showing them our appreciation through financial investment is one way we can thank them for their service and dedication to our country.

By putting money into veteran-owned enterprises, consumers have the ability to influence change at the grassroots level in order to promote positive growth throughout entire communities. It’s clear that there is much value found in recognizing and rewarding those who dedicated part of themselves so that we may live freely today. As such, investing in veteran-owned businesses should be considered an act of patriotism for all Americans interested in helping build strong local economies nationwide. With this understanding, let us now move on towards exploring some inspiring success stories of veteran-owned businesses…

Success Stories of Veteran-Owned Businesses

As veterans transition from military service to civilian life, many choose to become entrepreneurs. To highlight the successes of veteran-owned businesses and inspire others, this section will discuss five examples.

Take for example Midland Credit Management (MCM). After several years in the United States Army Reserve and a successful career as an executive at two Fortune 500 companies, Joe D’Angelo founded MCM in 1989 with only three employees. Thirty years later, it has become one of America’s largest debt recovery firms with over 2000 employees – proving that determination and hard work can lead to success.

Other inspiring veteran-owned businesses include:

  • Warrior Rising – A professional development organization enabling veterans to find meaningful employment opportunities through personal and professional skill building workshops.
  • American Corporate Partners (ACP) – A nonprofit providing free career coaching services exclusively to post 9/11 veterans.
  • VetFran – An initiative created by the International Franchise Association (IFA) connecting qualified veterans with franchising opportunities across various industries.

These are just some of the ways veteran-owned businesses have been able to thrive despite the challenges they face. From MCM’s story alone we can see how dedication, motivation, and hard work can help any entrepreneur succeed regardless of their background or experience level. By looking at these inspiring stories from other veteran-owned businesses, anyone considering starting their own business may be encouraged by what is possible when you put your mind towards something great.

To truly understand why there is such a need for support among veteran-owned businesses requires further exploration into the unique set of challenges these entities face every day.

Challenges Faced by Veteran-Owned Businesses

Having explored the success stories of veteran-owned businesses, it is important to examine the challenges they face. Take for example Joseph Smith, a former military officer who runs an online clothing store. His business has been successful but he now faces many obstacles in trying to expand operations and grow his customer base.

The first challenge that veterans often experience is financing. Due to their unique background and lack of credit history, small business owners are often unable to secure loans from traditional lenders or government programs. This can place them at a disadvantage when competing against larger businesses with greater access to funding.

Another obstacle faced by veteran entrepreneurs is navigating regulations and bureaucracy. Many laws and processes are written without taking into consideration the specific needs of veterans or their businesses. As a result, veterans may find themselves stuck trying to figure out how best to comply with rules which do not always make sense for their particular situation.

Finally, veteran-owned businesses also encounter difficulty marketing their products and services due to limited resources. They have fewer options available than larger companies who can afford more expensive advertising campaigns and higher visibility on social media platforms. The following list summarizes the main issues encountered:

  • Accessing capital
  • Understanding regulations & bureaucracy
  • Marketing limitations

For these reasons, there must be ways developed to support and recognize veteran-owned businesses so as to ensure they receive equal opportunity in today’s competitive marketplace.

Ways to Support and Recognize Veteran-Owned Businesses

Despite the challenges faced by veteran-owned businesses, there are many ways to support and recognize their success. One example of this is the case study of Jeff Cella, a former United States Marine Corps Sergeant who founded his own business after service in Iraq, specializing in construction and home repair services. His company, JG Home Solutions LLC., has grown from a one-man operation to an organization with over 35 employees that serves both military and civilian clients throughout Maryland.

The key to supporting veteran-owned businesses is understanding what they need so they can continue on their path towards success. Here are three primary areas where recognition and assistance can be provided:

  • Financial Support – Veteran-owned businesses often face financial issues due to limited access to capital investments or loans. Providing resources such as grants or low interest loan programs can help these organizations get started or expand operations without having to rely solely on personal savings.
  • Education & Training – Many veterans have difficulty transitioning into the private sector due to lack of knowledge about how things work outside of the military world. Offering specialized training courses or workshops specific for those coming out of active duty could provide them with essential skills needed for successful entrepreneurship.
  • Networking Opportunities – Establishing relationships within the local community or connecting them with other veteran-owned businesses already established in their area could open up new opportunities and create synergy between similar companies.

These are just some of the ways we can support and recognize veteran-owned businesses in our communities. With proper guidance, education, networking connections, financing options, and even tax incentives, these courageous entrepreneurs will not only survive but thrive long after military life is behind them. By providing these types of necessary resources we show our appreciation for all they have sacrificed while serving our country at home and abroad.

Commonly Asked Questions

What percentage of small businesses in the US are owned by veterans?

According to the US Small Business Administration, veteran-owned businesses account for roughly 9.1% of all small businesses in the United States. This is an impressive figure considering the fact that veterans only make up 7.6% of the overall population. Veterans have a long history of entrepreneurship and many veteran-owned businesses are highly successful and inspiring.

One example of such success is that of EO Products, founded by former Navy submariner Bruce Schoenberg in 1995. Starting from his garage with just $5,000, he built it into a company worth over $100 million dollars today. His business has been featured on Good Morning America and CNBC’s Power Pitch as well as being named one of Inc Magazine’s Top 5000 Fastest Growing Companies eight times since 2009.

Veteran entrepreneurs bring a unique set of skills to their businesses:

  • A strong work ethic – Many veterans have years of experience working hard under pressure while serving in the military;
  • An ability to lead – Military service provides leadership opportunities that help develop organizational skills;
  • Experience solving complex problems – The military teaches problem-solving techniques which can be applied to different scenarios encountered in business operations.

These qualities contribute to making veteran-owned businesses stand out, especially when pitted against other nonveteran owned enterprises due to their dedication and commitment to providing quality products or services even during difficult economic periods. Additionally, these same qualities help foster creativity, resilience and discipline within any organization they join as owners or employees, further contributing to its success rate compared with others without this level of expertise or knowledge base.

The combination of entrepreneurial spirit combined with military training gives veterans an edge when launching their own companies, increasing their chances for success significantly over those who do not have access to such resources or guidance. As more veterans become involved in the world of business, we should expect to see even greater levels of innovation arising from this powerful group whose experiences will continue shaping our economy for generations to come.

How does the government support veteran-owned businesses?

In the United States, almost 5% of small businesses are owned by veterans. To support these entrepreneurs and their respective ventures, the government has implemented several initiatives that provide both financial assistance and mentorship.
For example, in 2019 The Department of Veteran Affairs launched its Small Business Mentor-Protégé Program which pairs veteran-owned small business owners with corporate mentors to help them build and grow their operations. This program provides resources such as advice from experienced professionals, technical training programs and access to capital investments.
To further encourage veteran entrepreneurship, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) offers various loan programs specifically designed for military personnel and families transitioning into civilian life after service. These loans can be used for start-up costs or day-to-day expenses like equipment purchases, marketing fees and payroll taxes. Additionally, some states have enacted legislation offering tax exemptions to eligible veteran-owned businesses.
Government incentives aside, there are other options available to promote veteran involvement in business ownership including education courses on topics related to accounting practices, legal services, online marketing strategies and more. There are also many organizations dedicated to celebrating success stories within the veteran community – providing invaluable inspiration for those who want to take a chance on owning a business but may not know where to start.
Ultimately, the combination of governmental support and ample entrepreneurial opportunities make it possible for veterans to pursue their dreams of becoming successful business owners without sacrificing all they’ve worked for during their time in service:

  • Accessible financing solutions
  • Guidance & expertise from seasoned professionals
  • A supportive network of peers & industry experts
    By leveraging these advantages – along with creative ideas and hard work – veterans have been able to launch profitable businesses across a number of industries while inspiring others at home and abroad through their achievements.

Are there any special tax benefits for veteran-owned businesses?

One example of a special tax benefit for veteran-owned businesses is the Disabled Access Credit. This credit, which was part of the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010, allows eligible small businesses to claim up to $5,000 in business expenses that are related to providing access for disabled individuals. The amount of this credit depends on the size and type of business as well as its total costs associated with improving accessibility.

The federal government offers several other tax benefits that can help veterans start or expand their own businesses. These include:

  • A deduction from taxable income equal to 10% of the cost incurred by an employer when hiring qualified veterans who have been unemployed for at least six months;
  • An exclusion from gross income and wages paid to certain family members employed by the veteran’s business;
  • Special credits available for increasing research expenditures; and
  • Tax relief for disabled veterans operating a trade or business.

These incentives provide a financial boost to those starting out in small businesses and allow them to focus more resources on growing their enterprises without worrying about the impact taxes could have on their bottom line. Additionally, many state governments offer additional tax incentives such as sales tax exemptions, property tax abatements, and reduced franchise fees in order to encourage new entrepreneurs. In some cases, these types of incentives may be combined with existing federal ones, creating substantial savings over time.

Veteran-owned businesses also benefit from contracting opportunities through various government departments and agencies including military branches such as the Department of Defense and Veterans Affairs. Through these contracts they are able to obtain goods or services needed while contributing back into local economies. Furthermore, there are organizations dedicated solely towards helping veterans gain access to capital via grants or loans specifically designed for them so that they may grow their operations faster than if going it alone would allow. By leveraging these kinds of programs alongside receiving any applicable tax breaks offered through both federal and state levels, veteran-owned businesses can maximize their potential growth rate far beyond what traditional means might otherwise accomplish.

Who is eligible to receive funding from veteran-focused organizations?

One example of an organization that provides funding to veterans is the Veterans Business Fund (VBF). VBF offers financial assistance and resources for veteran entrepreneurs who are looking to start or grow their business. This includes grants, loans, investments and more.

In order to be eligible for these funds from organizations such as VBF, certain criteria must be met. Generally speaking, you must be a U.S. military veteran in good standing with honorable discharge status, have a viable business idea or existing small business, demonstrate sufficient credit worthiness and income potentials, possess proper documentation related to your service record and present a sound business plan.

The following list outlines some common eligibility requirements for receiving Veteran-focused funding:

  • Must have served at least one full year of active duty in any branch of the military;
  • Must own 51% or more of the business;
  • Must be able to provide proof of military experience;
  • The applicant’s net worth should not exceed $500k including primary residence equity.

Additionally, some institutions may require additional qualifications such as being accepted into specific programs or other types of accreditations in order to qualify for certain benefits. It is important to research all available options when seeking out funding sources for your venture so that you can take advantage of every opportunity available based on your individual qualifications and circumstances.

It is also essential that applicants understand how different funding sources work before beginning the process – whether it’s through grants, loans or venture capital investments – so they can make informed decisions about what type of financing will best serve their needs. Knowing this information ahead of time can help ensure that businesses get off the ground successfully and receive long-term economic success while meeting their goals along the way.

What types of resources and networking opportunities are available to veteran entrepreneurs?

In order to support the success of veteran entrepreneurs and small business owners, there are a number of resources available. A great example is the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Office of Veterans Business Development which provides training, counseling and other services for veterans looking to start or grow their own businesses. Additionally, many organizations provide funding specifically geared towards helping veteran-owned businesses succeed.

Veteran entrepreneurs also have access to a wide range of networking opportunities that can help them build relationships with potential partners and customers. For instance, Bunker Labs offers an online network where military veteran entrepreneurs can connect with likeminded professionals who share similar goals and experiences. Other organizations such as VA WIN offer educational workshops and conferences on topics relevant to veteran entrepreneurship.

There are several advantages in taking advantage of these types of resources for veterans interested in starting their own business:

  • Networking – Veteran entrepreneurs benefit from having access to a large community of entrepreneurial peers who understand the unique challenges they face when launching a business venture.
  • Training & Education – Connecting with experienced mentors and industry experts allows novice veterans to gain valuable insights into successful strategies for managing a business efficiently.
  • Funding Opportunities – Organizations dedicated to helping veterans fund their businesses typically provide grants, loans or other forms of financial assistance designed specifically for this purpose.

With so many resources now available, it has never been easier for veterans to take control of their future by starting up their own enterprise. By forming partnerships with specialized agencies or attending networking events tailored specifically toward veteran entrepreneurs, individuals can make meaningful connections while gaining knowledge that will be invaluable throughout the life cycle of their business endeavor.

Comments are closed.