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For the 250,000 American military personnel who retire from service every year, returning to civilian life is considered a major challenge. Honoring them on Veteran’s Day may be a heart-warming tribute to their bravery, but helping them succeed after retirement is also crucial. 

With their specialized skill set, military background, and leadership skills, US veterans are qualified to take on jobs in the private sector. These qualities are the reason why companies such as Coca Cola, PenFed, and Home Depot have developed hiring programs for these former soldiers. 

Displaced Heroes 

Despite such opportunities, retirees, especially the young ones, are finding it difficult to get jobs. The US Department of Veterans Affairs anticipates that by 2020, the US will have around two million veterans below 34.

 Many potential employers do not realize that hiring these veterans could be one of the best business decisions they can make. The skills, training, and attitude of these retired soldiers make them the best candidates for positions in key sectors, according to top veteran news articles. 

Over the years, it has been a tradition among retirees to set up their own business once they leave the service. Government data show that 50% of World War II veterans and 40% of Korean War veterans transitioned to becoming entrepreneurs. 

 Moreover, out of the 5.5 million business establishments in the US, 7% of them are veteran-owned. These figures, however, are going down. Out of the 3.6 million who served the military since September 11, 2001, only 4.5% have invested in a company. 

 Studies have shown the reasons for the decline. Among the factors identified were the veterans’ inability to find employment after their retirement, and the absence of opportunities in networking based on top veteran news articles. 

No Access to Funds

Another major factor that is limiting the ability of these veterans to set up enterprises is the lack of business history. Currently, around $25,000 is needed as initial capitalization to jumpstart a business. Such an amount may be too much for a recent retiree.  

This situation became the inspiration for the creation of the PenFed Foundation’s Veteran Entrepreneurship Investment Program (VEIP) in 2018. Its main goal is to help veterans establish their business by providing them with much-needed seed capitalization. 

With the VEIP’s network of 1,700 business partners, it has raised $1.4 million that is now being used to assist veterans in building their businesses. It’s worthy to note that these retired servicemen are now benefitting from the program.

For instance, VEIP provided funding to retired Navy pilot Abe Kamarck, enabling him to launch True Made Foods in 2015. Abe, a father of four, was worried about the unhealthy foods his kids were eating. He knew that something had to be done to address the situation. 

The first thing he did was study how ketchup and other sauces were produced. Based on their findings, True Made Foods developed recipes using vegetables as one of the primary ingredients. The company now has 1,400 outlets throughout the country. 

 With the success of True Made Foods, Americans can help US veterans by utilizing their vast social networks to share the company’s experience. They can also use LinkedIn to connect with veteran organizations that can provide mentoring to these veterans.

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Successful business owners can attest that the journey of entrepreneurship is never easy and requires commitment and strategic planning. If you have an idea to market a product or service and you’re thinking about launching your company, be sure to set realistic and measurable financial goals.

It is the best decision an entrepreneur will make to build its foundation into a structural organization for raising the capital to launch and run its daily operations. When an entrepreneur prepares financially short-term and long-term, mistakes are avoidable and milestones are easily reachable. It will help you make a financial assessment of whether you need more capital through angel investments or a loan.

To get started, beginner entrepreneurs should do their research and find reliable resources to help them with planning, launching, managing, and expanding their businesses. Having a great idea is good, but it isn’t enough to build a successful company.

You can find helpful information about starting a business on the Small Business Administration website. While it’s easy to come up with business venture ideas, established business owners will tell real-life stories about them making terrible financial mistakes. Listed below are indispensable financial tips to create your own startup.

Financial Tips for Starting a New Business

Establish realistic and measurable financial goals by determining your desired revenue and expense obligations on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis with milestones. This data is essential to ensure you have enough capital to launch and run your company for a year or longer.

Create a budget and stay committed to it. Avoid frivolous spending habits before you get your startup off the ground. Your focus, in the beginning, should be on generating revenue and not the purchase of extravagant furniture, for an example.

Invest in simple accounting software or the best lease accounting software to track your expenses, income and leases, meaning all the money coming in and out of the startup. This is your first business venture, therefore keep expenses low and to a minimum

Make preparations for reporting and paying taxes to local, state, and federal governments. First-time business owners seem to forget to include this in their financial planning. The results can be costly to entrepreneurs resulting in late fees and penalties.

Eliminate high fixed costs including rent and hiring permanent employees. If you don’t need a huge office suite, consider other alternatives that are less costly. Limit your employee hiring to help reduce administrative expenses.

Seek capital by getting a business loan from a reputable lending company. Some of these companies offer the best small business loans at low-interest rates.

Open personal and business saving accounts as soon as your business earn income. You can select a Roth IRA and safe investments to set aside for retirement and expanding your company.

If you have to rely on additional funding to launch and run your business, choose a lending institution run by entrepreneurs and experienced investors. Most of these companies offer a business line of credit and term loans up to $20 million. If you follow the tips mentioned above, you are on the right path of your journey to building a prosperous business.