The SBA offers support for veterans as they enter the world of business ownership. Look for funding programs, training, and federal contracting opportunities.
Office of Veterans Business Development (OVBD)
Devoted exclusively to promoting veteran entrepreneurship, the OVBD facilitates the use of all SBA programs by veterans, service-disabled veterans, reservists, active-duty service members, transitioning service members, and their dependents or survivors.
SBA programs provide access to capital and preparation for small business opportunities. They can also connect veteran small business owners with federal procurement and commercial supply chains.
The Veterans Business Outreach Program is an OVBD initiative that oversees Veterans Business Outreach Centers (VBOC) across the country. This small business program features a number of success stories and offers business plan workshops, concept assessments, mentorship, and training for eligible veterans.
Funding for veteran-owned small businesses
You can use SBA tools like Lender Match to connect with lenders. In addition, the SBA makes special consideration for veterans through several programs.
- SBA Veterans Advantage. Offers guarantees on loans approved to businesses that are at least 51-percent owned by veterans or military spouses.
- The Military Reservist Economic Injury Disaster Loan Program (MREIDL). Provides loans of up to $2 million to cover operating costs that cannot be met due to the loss of an essential employee called to active duty in the Reserves or National Guard.
Veteran owned entrepreneurship training programs
SBA programs feature customized curriculums, in-person classes, and online courses to give veterans the training to succeed. These programs teach the fundamentals of business ownership, SBA resources, and small business experts.
- Boots to Business: An entrepreneurial program offered on military installations around the world and a training track of the Department of Defense (DOD) Transition Assistance Program (TAP). Boots to Business Reboot extends the entrepreneurship training offered in TAP to veterans of all eras in their communities.
- Women Veteran Entrepreneurship Training Program (WVETP): Provides entrepreneurial training to women veterans, women service members, and women spouses of service members and veterans as they start or grow a business. SBA funds these entrepreneurship training programs available exclusively for women veterans through grantees:
- IVMF – Veteran Women Igniting the Spirit of Entrepreneurship (V-WISE)
- Bunker Labs – EPIC and BUNKER IN A BOX
- Lift Fund – San Antonio
- Service Disabled Veteran Entrepreneurship Training Program (SDVETP): Provides entrepreneurship training program(s) to service-disabled veteran entrepreneurs who aspire to be small business owners or currently own a small business. SBA funds entrepreneurship training programs for service-disabled veterans through grantees:
- IVMF – Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV)
- Veterans Entrepreneurship Program (VEP) – Riata Center for Entrepreneurship, Spears School of Business at Oklahoma State University
- Veteran Entrepreneurship Jumpstart Program – St. Joseph’s University
- Dog Tag Inc.
- Veteran Federal Procurement Entrepreneurship Training Program (VFPETP): Delivers entrepreneurship training to veteran-owned and service-disabled veteran-owned businesses nationwide interested in pursuing, or are already engaged in federal procurement.
Veteran owned contracting
The Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business Concern program (SDVOSBC) gives procuring agencies the authority to set acquisitions aside for exclusive competition among service-disabled, veteran-owned small businesses. Sole source awards will be delivered if certain conditions are met.
Check out the rules of eligibility for this program.