Donald W. Reynolds National Center For Business Journalism

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Veterans Day angle: Entrepreneurship

November 9, 2020

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Millions of veterans have launched businesses while serving or after moving into civilian life. Photo of a camouflage backpack, boots, and American flag by Benjamin Faust via Unsplash.

As Veterans Day approaches, consider profiling local veterans or military spouses who’ve launched businesses. The U.S. Small Business Administration reports that there is about one veteran-owned firm for every ten veterans and that veterans are more likely to be self-employed than non-veterans. These businesses also provide millions of jobs.

Some of these veterans run consulting companies that work with the Department of Defense or otherwise serve the military community, but veterans own all kinds of businesses from breweries to dog boarding that might be worth highlighting. 

What inspired this business idea? What skills have they transferred from the battlefield to their own business? What resources have they used to transition into entrepreneurship? Do they employer other veterans or spouses? What advice do they have for other veterans or spouses interested in starting a business? 

Where to Find Veteran or Military Spouse-Owned Businesses

There are a number of online directories that list these kinds of businesses, and you can search by city or state. These include Veteran Owned Business Association, VeteranOwnedBusiness.com, and Veteran Owned Business Network

You could also reach out to one of the many organizations that help these businesses and ask for referrals. For instance, the Center of Excellence for Veteran EntrepreneurshipPatriot Boot Camp, or Veteran Shark Tank. Some of these organizations run startup accelerators specifically tailored to the military and veteran community. If you’re running a feature on multiple veteran-owned businesses, you might include quotes from someone at one of these organizations to provide bigger picture commentary.  

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