Today, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced $3.5 million in grant awards to support outreach organizations focused on veteran small businesses. The grants provide critical funding to create new Veterans Business Outreach Centers (VBOCs) in Alaska, California, Colorado, Iowa, Nebraska, Nevada, and South Carolina, strengthening training and counseling services for aspiring and existing veteran and military spouse small business owners. In the United States, there are nearly two million veteran-owned small businesses, employing over five million people and generating over $1.3 trillion in annual revenue.
“Our servicemembers have protected our Nation with selfless honor and sacrifice, and the Biden-Harris Administration is committed to supporting them with resources and opportunities as they pursue their American dreams of business ownership,” said U.S. Small Business Administrator Isabella Casillas Guzman. “With this expansion of our veteran-focused network of small business centers, we can help more transitioning service members, veterans, National Guard and Reserve members, and military spouses start and grow their businesses and advance our economy.”
“VBOCs are a one-stop shop for business training, counseling, and resource partner referrals to transitioning service members, veterans, National Guard and Reserve members, and military spouses interested in starting or growing a small business,” said Timothy Green, Acting Associate Administrator for the Office of Veterans Business Development. “The new centers will provide additional resources to increase support and access for nearly 2 million veteran-owned small businesses. The expanded locations aim to enhance the veteran small business owner experience with more opportunities for training and less appointment wait times.”
Today’s announcement expands the VBOC program from 22 to 28 locations, fully servicing all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, and American Samoa. Organizations receiving grants from the SBA have demonstrated a commitment to addressing challenges that veteran-owned small businesses face and helping them succeed through the Department of Defense’s Transition Assistance Program. Grants will support a range of services, including:
- Business planning: Provides veterans with training and counseling on accounting, financial planning, and management.
- Assistance accessing capital: Provides veterans help in understanding the multitude of sources of capital available to them, as well as helps them in accessing financing, loans, and grants.
- Marketing and outreach: Provides marketing and outreach services to promote veteran-owned businesses in their communities and beyond.
- Transitioning: Provides Boots to Business instruction to help active duty servicemembers transition out of the military.
Grant awardees are as follows:
- Seattle Economic Development Fund – Business Impact Northwest
Coverage Area: Alaska
- University of Texas Arlington College of Business
Coverage Area: Nevada
- Mt. Carmel Veterans Service Center
Colorado Springs, CO
Coverage Area: Colorado
- Nebraska Enterprise Fund
Coverage Area: Nebraska and Iowa
- The Citadel
Coverage Area: South Carolina
- Long Beach City College
Long Beach, CA
Coverage Area: California – Los Angeles County, San Bernardino County, Ventura County, Orange County, Santa Barbara County, and Riverside County
For more information or to find a VBOC near you, visit www.sba.gov/vboc.
To learn more about SBA’s programs for veterans, visit www.sba.gov/veterans.