The training, experience, and discipline of armed services can be a real asset in business. Veterans have what it takes to become great entrepreneurs from leadership skills and teamwork to make quick decisions. It’s no surprise that 9.15% or more than 2.25 small businesses in the U.S. are veteran-owned.
While capital remains a significant barrier to entry for most veterans, things have changed in the digital era. For instance, a new crop of fintech lenders like Camino Financial offers small business loans to minority entrepreneurs.
7 profitable business ideas for Veterans
1-. Private security firm
Veterans inspire a lot of confidence when it comes to security matters. People trust that they have the skills, the physical frame, and the intelligence required to secure their property. Veterans should capitalize on that trust and their military experience to start private security firms.
It’s quite a profitable venture if you run your security outfit to offer security services to local businesses, high-profile citizens, civic events, festivals, and other places. And the good thing is, Veterans can always use service contact to hire fellow veterans and build a strong security team.
2-. Become a franchise owner
Over 5,608 veterans chose to become franchisees between 2011-2014. According to Mark Rockefeller, a U.S. Air Force veteran, and businessman, most veterans opt for franchising because it mirrors a military structure. Instead of starting a brand from scratch, veterans are handed down a plan and a checklist of systems and procedures to execute.
And the good thing is, most franchisors are always willing to offer lucrative discounts to veterans. For instance, Sport Clips and 7-Eleven offer veterans a 20% discount on their franchises fees, while UPS Store slashes its fees by $10,000. Veterans can then obtain small business loans to cover the remaining cost.
3-. Tour guide business
There’s a general attitude that military people have what it takes to do anything and go anywhere. Since off-road excursions have become popular in most states, a tour guide business is an excellent option for veterans.
Thus, veterans should capitalize on their experience in the field and the confidence people have towards them to build profitable tour guide businesses. It is a great way to combine work and play, especially for ex-military who love off-road or four-wheel-drive tours. Vacationers will feel very confident on a 4×4 jeep with a veteran.
4-. Government contractor
By law, 3% or more of the value of government contracts and subcontracts must go to businesses owned by disabled veterans. Government contracts span many areas, including IT, logistics, medical, network security, construction & engineering, transportation, administrative work, and live support.
Veterans who have worked in any of those fields in the military should capitalize on their expertise, insight, and relationship to becoming government contractors.
5-. Firearms dealership
Because of their experience with firearms, veterans stand a chance to be eligible for a Federal Firearms license. Whether you run a gun shop or a shooting range, you’re pretty sure to get handsome profit selling or training civilians on how to deal with firearms.
6-. Open a retail shop
According to the U.S. Census, retail is the fourth-most-popular industry that most veterans retire into. It’s a good business for veterans who have good marketing and supply management skills. It’s even better if you identify yourself as a veteran and sell products with a military theme.
7-. Niche Blogging
Most veterans have very excellent storytelling skills and the ability to convey information in a straightforward, relatable manner. That’s great for blogging.
If you don’t want to get into capital-intensive businesses, running a niche blog is a great idea to spend your retirement years doing something you love. For instance, you can start a cybersecurity blog or a news blog that covers military-related activities. You only need a computer and a stable internet connection.
Fund your Veteran startup with small business loans
To pivot your business, you’ll need to work with suitable lenders who can offer you working capital within a short call. Banks and credit unions tend to have stringent requirements, bureaucratic paper-laden applications, and lengthy approval periods. They may not work for you if you lack an excellent credit profile or need cash quickly.
Your best bet is to access small business loans from online lenders. They have a simple application process, and you can get funded within 24 hours. Visit the link in the intro section to learn more about small business loans.