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Entrepreneurs Hub:
Strategies, Tips & Insights to Grow Your Business

Empowering Veteran Entrepreneurs

Grow your Business

The path to business ownership can be daunting, but the Small Business Administration (SBA) provides a helping hand to veterans seeking funding, training, and federal contract opportunities.

Office of Veteran Business Development

As a champion for veteran businesses, the Office of Veteran Business Development (OVBD) serves as a conduit for all SBA programs. These programs give veterans access to capital, as well as training and support for small business opportunities. Additionally, veteran-owned businesses can connect with federal procurement and supply chains.

Through the Veterans Business Outreach Program, the OVBD oversees the nationwide network of Veterans Business Service Centers (VBOCs). These centers provide valuable resources, such as business planning workshops, concept testing, mentoring, and training, to eligible veterans. Countless success stories have already emerged from this small business program.

Locate the nearest VBOC to you and discover the full range of support available.

Financing for Veteran-Owned Small Businesses

The SBA’s Lender Match tool can connect veteran entrepreneurs with credit institutions. Moreover, the SBA offers special programs that cater to the unique needs of veterans.

  • The Military Reservists Economic Injury and Disaster Loan Program (MREIDL) provides loans of up to $2 million to cover operational costs that may arise from the loss of an essential employee called to active duty in the Reserves or the National Guard.

Entrepreneurship Programs for Veterans

SBA offers a range of training programs that cater to the unique needs of veterans. From face-to-face classes to online courses, these programs are tailored to provide veterans with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in business. The SBA also offers access to resources and small business experts.

Boots to Business Veteran Entrepreneurship Program: A comprehensive program that is offered at military installations worldwide and the US Department of Defense Transition Assistance Program (TAP) training track. The Boots to Business Reboot Veteran Entrepreneur Training Program is designed to expand the business training offered at TAP to veterans of any generation in their own community. The six-week virtual Boots to Business Revenue Readiness program, available after completion of Boots to Business or Boots to Business Reboot, prepares participants to take their business idea from conception to execution.

Women Veterans Entrepreneurship Training Program (WVETP): Provides entrepreneurship training to female veterans, female service members, and spouses of service members and veterans. These business training programs, funded by the SBA, are available only to female veterans through grants. Check the following links in English:

  • IVMF: Women Veterans Ignite the Spirit of Entrepreneurship (V-WISE)
  • Lift Fund – San Antonio
  • ONABEN

Service Disabled Veterans Business Training Program (SDVETP): Offers business training programs to service-disabled veterans who aspire to own or already own a small business. The SBA funds English-language business training programs for service-disabled veterans through grants.

  • The Riata Center for Entrepreneurship at the Spears School of Management, Oklahoma State University, provides the Veterans Entrepreneurship Program (VEP) to support veteran entrepreneurs.
  • St. Joseph’s University offers the Veterans Entrepreneurship Booster Program to empower veteran entrepreneurs.
  • Warrior Rising is a charity dedicated to supporting veteran entrepreneurs and helping them succeed.
  • The Training and Resources Network for Veteran Entrepreneurs provides valuable resources to help veterans start and grow their own businesses.
  • The Veterans Federal Acquisition Entrepreneurship Training Program (VFPETP) offers comprehensive entrepreneurship training to veteran-owned and service-disabled veteran-owned businesses nationwide, with a focus on federal procurement.
  • The Veterans Acquisition Institute (VIP) helps veterans to acquire the skills and knowledge necessary to excel in the world of federal acquisition.

Federal Contracting Opportunities for Veteran-Owned Businesses

Every year, a portion of the federal government’s contracting budget is set aside specifically for businesses owned by military veterans. Additionally, veteran-owned small businesses may be eligible to purchase surplus assets from the federal government. 

Eligibility rules for these federal contracting programs can be found on the SBA website.

Supporting Military Spouses as Entrepreneurs

Military spouses are resilient and adaptable, and many choose to pursue entrepreneurship as a career. The SBA Office of Veterans Business Development (OVBD) offers military spouses the same resources and opportunities as service members and veterans, including counseling, training, access to capital, and disaster assistance. The OVBD recognizes the unique challenges faced by military spouses and provides specialized support to help them succeed as small business owners.

Education

Did you know that SBA-run business training programs are available to military spouses? These free programs are offered at over 180 facilities across the United States. Enroll in one of our English language training courses today and take the first step towards entrepreneurship.

  • Boots to Business.
  • Boots to Business Reboot.
  • Veteran Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship (V-WISE).
  • Lift Fund (San Antonio).
  • Veterans Institute for Procurement (VIP).

Advisory Services

If you are a military spouse looking to start a business and need guidance, the SBA provides personalized counseling in local communities through our SBA district offices, Veterans Business Service Centers (VBOCs), Women’s Business Centers, Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs), and SCORE Business Mentors. Connect with SBA resources in your area and get started today.

  • SBA District Offices.
  • Veterans Business Service Center (VBOC) Program.
  • Business Centers for Women.
  • Small Business Development Centers (SBDCs).
  • SCORE Business Mentors.

In addition, the Military Spouse & Entrepreneurship Group on LinkedIn provides a platform to connect with experienced business mentors, other military spouse business owners, and DoD-certified career counselors. Join this group to ask and answer questions, share and find information, and offer and receive advice in English about businesses in the military spouse community.

Financing

Have a great business idea but need financing? The SBA collaborates with lenders nationwide to help military spouse business owners secure small business loans. Discover the best option for you:

  • SBA Loan Programs.
  • Lender Match (find lenders).

Disasters can happen anytime, and even the most prepared business owners can be affected. SBA provides low-interest disaster loans to businesses of all sizes, private nonprofit organizations, homeowners, and renters. SBA disaster loans can be used to repair or replace the following items damaged or destroyed in a declared disaster: real estate, personal property, machinery and equipment, and business assets and inventory. Learn more about SBA disaster loans.

Employment

Interested in federal contracting opportunities? The government provides tools to help businesses succeed in the federal sector. The SBA can assist in preparing you for the opportunity to obtain federal contracts, build connections within business supply chains, and receive disaster assistance. Explore the type of small business classification that suits you best.

  • Women-Owned Small Businesses.
  • Small Business 8(a).
  • HubZone Certified Small Businesses.
  • Small Businesses at a Disadvantage.

 

 

Tags: Grow your Business

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