Historically, Veterans do very well as small business entrepreneurs. Veterans interested in entrepreneurship and small business ownership should look to the U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Veterans Business Development for assistance. OVBD conducts comprehensive outreach to Veterans, service—disabled Veterans and Reserve Component members ofthe U.S. military. OVBD also provides assistance to Veteran- and Reservist-owned small businesses. SBA is the primary federal agency responsible for assisting Veterans who own or are considering starting their own small businesses.
Among the services provided by SBA are business-planning assistance, counseling and training through community based Veterans Business Outreach Centers. For more information, go to this website.
More than 1,000 university-based Small Business Development Centers; nearly 400 SCORE chapters with 11,000 volunteer counselors, many of whom are Veterans; and 100 Women’s Business Centers.
SBA also manages a range of special small business lending programs at thousands of locations, ranging from Micro Loans to the Military-community-targeted Patriot Express Pilot Loan, to venture capital and Surety Bond Guarantees. Visit this website for more information.
Veterans also participate in all SBA federal procurement programs, including a special 3 percent federal procurement goal specifically for service-connected disabled Veterans, and SBA supports Veterans and others participating in international trade.
A special Military Reservist Economic Injury Disaster Loan is available for self-employed Reservists whose small businesses may be damaged through the absence of the owner or an essential employee as a result of Title 10 activation to Active Duty.
A Veterans Business Development Officer is stationed at every SBA District Office to act as a guide to Veterans, and SBA offers a full range of self-paced small business planning assistance at this website for Veterans, Reservists, discharging service members and their families.
The Small Business Administration has numerous programs designed to support Veterans. The latest is Operation Boots to Business: From Service to Startup, a program to teach returning service members the nuts and bolts of how to start and grow a business. The program is currently available to Marines at four locations, with the goal of providing the program to all branches of the military in the coming year. For more information please visit this website.