Help Vets Start, Grow Their Small Business: The Veteran Entrepreneurs Act can tear down the barriers to help veterans fulfill their dream of becoming entrepreneurs.

Author:Tenney, Claudia

US. service members are among our nation's most highly trained leaders, yet many veterans experience trouble transitioning into a post-military career. As Americans, we must ensure our veterans have the resources to find success in the private sector when they come home from serving our nation. Our service men and women upend their lives to serve our country. It is our duty to help them when they return to civilian life. Thousands of former servicemembers transition out of the military each year. It must be a national priorityto provide every opportunity for veterans to succeed in whatever career path they choose.

We have both supported legislation to help veterans transition from service to civilian life, including last year's Harry W. Colmery Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2017. This will improve and expand the GI Bill, enabling current and future veterans to pursue higher education.

For many veterans, their dream after serving is the pride and the freedom of owning their own business. Our service branches instill leadership, a strong work ethic, and a sense of duty to accomplish goals under tremendous pressures --all skills required to be successful as an entrepreneur. But for many veterans, starting a business from scratch can be daunting. It not only requires significant financial investment, but the likelihood of success can be quite steep as the owner is learning how to run a business for the first time.

Veterans programs exist to help veterans realize their dream of owning their own business. The Small Business Administration offers special lending, training and contracting programs to help veterans enter the world of business and ensure their business is a success.

Another way to mitigate the risk of owning a small business is by purchasing a franchise. Franchises offer training, a business model that works, marketing support, and a supply chain already in place that makes it easier for first-time business owners to succeed--especially for veterans who are accustomed to a chain-of-command structure. There are 733,000 franchise establishments nationwide, and a study by PricewaterhouseCoopers showed that franchise businesses owned by veterans are more successful than the average veteran-owned small...

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