Just in time for Memorial Day, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) has announced it is joining forces with more than twenty of the country’s largest banks in an effort to increase lending to veterans who are interested in starting their own businesses. Wells Fargo, JP Morgan Chase and TD Bank are just some of the key lending institutions who are on board.
The goal? To increase lending to veterans by a full five percent for a total of roughly $475 million in capital over the next five years, resulting in some 2,000-plus veterans being added to the current estimated total of 2.4 million veterans who are now small-business owners. The effort is part of the SBA’s recently launched Operation Boots to Business: From Service to Startup Initiative, which is a national entrepreneurship training program to help veterans transition back into civilian life.
With more than one million veterans expected to leave military service by 2015, the SBA and its partners are dedicated to ensuring veteran-owned small businesses can get the financing assistance, business training and mentoring and assistance with federal procurement programs they need to be successful. Currently, an estimated nine percent of small businesses are owned and operated by veterans, a trend that has grown in recent years. In fact, veterans are more likely than those with no active-duty military experience to be self-employed, making the fact that they face special challenges in raising capital following deployment of particular concern to the SBA and its partners, which also include the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and the U.S. Department of Defense.
"Our service men and women have made incalculable contributions and sacrifices for our country, and supporting them as they pursue their dreams to start or grow their own business is one of SBA’s highest priorities," said SBA Administrator Karen Mills in a recent statement. “Through this partnership with national lending partners and regional and community lenders across the U.S., we stand ready to serve veteran entrepreneurs with loan-guarantees, entrepreneurial training and resources that are critical tools to help them start businesses, drive the local economy and create jobs for themselves and their communities.”
If you’re a veteran who is looking to buy a home-based or any other business opportunity, distributorship, licensee opportunity or franchise and is looking for advice, loan options or any other information that can help you to start or grow your own small business, we encourage you to go to either http://www.sba.gov/content/veteran-service-disabled-veteran-owned or http://boots2business.org/ now!
To all the veterans out there, on this Memorial Day and always, thank you for your service from all of us here at BusinessOpportunity.com!