In recognition of today being Veteran’s Day, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has announced a new initiative designed to increase the number of small business loans available to veterans. Starting January 1 and for the rest of the fiscal year, SBA will be setting the borrower upfront fee at zero for all veteran loans authorized under the SBA Express program, a program that supports loans of as much as $350,000.
The announcement caps off an entire week of activities that highlighted the immense contributions that veterans are making in their communities as well as in business, especially where starting their own small business ventures and becoming successful small business entrepreneurs is concerned. In fact, SBA estimates that nearly one in 10 small businesses is now veteran-owned and operated, employing close to 6 million people combined and with more than $1 trillion in annual receipts. Moreover, veterans are 45 percent more likely than those who have never served to be self-employed, making their role in the small business entrepreneurship economy extremely important and worthy of encouragement and active support.
“Our job at SBA is to make sure veterans know what tools and programs are out there to help them achieve their dreams,” said Acting SBA Administrator Jeanne Hulit in a statement last week. It’s with that primary goal in mind that SBA partners with various regional and nationwide organizations on educational efforts and to provide veterans with the mentoring and training they want and need to become small business owners.
SBA also provides veterans with access to business counseling and training and capital and business development opportunities through government contracts. In fiscal year 2013 alone, SBA supported close to $2 billion in loans for more than 3,000 veteran-owned small business enterprises, essentially doubling the dollar amount of SBA lending support to veteran-owned firms since 2009.
Veterans who want to become business opportunity, distributorship, licensee opportunity or other small business owners have access to a comprehensive network of nationwide support, including 68 local SBA offices and more than a dozen Veterans Business Outreach Centers. Additionally, they can feel free to contact any one of the more than 900 Small Business Development Center (SBDC) outreach locations across the country or take advantage of 12,000-plus SCORE mentor volunteers that are willing and able to share their entrepreneurial expertise at little to no expense.
Learn more about all of the many programs and support services that are available to you as an aspiring or existing small business vetrepreneur today. Visit our Veterans Section for more information now!
Most importantly, Happy Veteran’s Day from all of us here at BusinessOpportunity.com! We sincerely thank you all for your service today and every day.