The following article was written by PeopleFund staff as a guest post for the new SCORE blog on entrepreneurship, financing, lending, and business practices.
“Show Me the Money”
“Vetrepreneurs” Want to Know
We routinely hear that “veterans make great business owners,” because they do— specialized training, job experience, teamwork and discipline and are all part of military service and also essential characteristics of successful entrepreneurs. For example Nike, Chik-Fil-A, Fedex, and Little Caesars were all started by veterans with a dream and determination to succeed. Veterans are twice as likely as their civilian counterparts to become entrepreneurs, frequently referred to as “vetrepreneurs”.
The real question is: if veteran-owned businesses are more likely to succeed than civilian-owned businesses, why aren’t they getting financed?
Transitioning veterans may have limited credit history, cash or collateral as a result of modest pay, family separations due to deployments, and frequent moves . Many veteran businesses are start-ups and do not qualify for bank loans. All these factor combined, make veterans want to know who will “Show me the Money”
PeopleFund has a proven lending and education program designed for veterans. PeopleVET provides six three-hour sessions covering personal credit, financial statements, business planning, marketing, product
pricing, capital needs and other relevant topics needed for business success. Subject to very basic criteria, graduates qualify for a $20,000 loan at fixed 5% interest rate. In fact, all veterans automatically qualify for a 5% interest rate at PeopleFund, whether or not they participate in PeopleVET. Currently 20% of PeopleFund loans are to veterans, with average loan size of $40,000. Visit https://peoplefund.org/education/peoplevet/ to find out more.