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Veterans Business Fund Created to Help More Veterans Qualify for Small Business Loans

Fund provides capital to veterans on highly favorable terms to assist in meeting equity requirements for small business loans.

 
PRLog - Nov. 12, 2012 - New York, N.Y. – The Veterans Business Fund (VBF), a not-for-profit organization created to provide financial assistance to veterans, today announced its formation, and the issuing of the Fund’s first low-interest loan to a veteran. The Veterans Business Fund was established in response to the high unemployment rate among veterans, many of whom are skilled through their military experience to become successful small business owners but lack sufficient equity capital to qualify for a small business loan.

VBF provides capital to veterans in the form of a low-interest loan with favorable terms. All principal and interest paid to the Fund are made available to future veteran entrepreneurs requiring assistance in meeting the equity requirements for a small business loan. The initial capital for the Fund has been provided by BoeFly Chairman and CEO Robert Tannenhauser and Board of Directors member Alvin Sarter. BoeFly is a service that makes it easier to obtain small business loans by reducing the time, cost, complexity, inefficiency and frustration associated with small business lending. It connects small business borrowers with multiple lenders from among its more than 2,400 participating banks, based on the lending profiles provided by the banks and the information provided in the borrower’s loan request. Its vantage point as a service provider connecting borrowers and lenders provided the insight that led to the development of VBF.

U.S. Army veteran and Wounded Warrior Shilo Harris, a new franchisee of WIN Home Inspection in San Antonio, Texas, was introduced as the first recipient of funds from VBF during a Veterans Day event in San Antonio. The event celebrated the opening of local veteran- and active duty-owned small businesses and the efforts to support the expansion of veteran-owned businesses amid an unemployment rate above 24 percent for some veteran age groups. SBA Administrator Karen Mills was among the event’s speakers.

“Since returning home from Iraq five years ago, I knew I wanted to apply the skills I picked up in the military toward owning and operating a small business, and opening a WIN Home Inspection franchise provides the ideal opportunity for me,” Harris said. “However, owning this business would not be possible without the money I secured from the Veterans Business Fund, and I’m very humbled to be the first veteran to be chosen for the Fund.”

The VBF is designed to help veterans achieve small business ownership through franchising or through independent business alike. The Fund has aligned with the International Franchise Association’s VetFran program to help encourage franchising – with its focused training opportunities, defined structure and systems, and requirement for operational excellence — as a viable path for veterans.

“BoeFly has a solid understanding of the equity requirements required by small business lenders and the challenges many veteran entrepreneurs face in meeting them, and we realize small business ownership is out of reach for too many veterans who lack the capital,” said Mike Rozman, co-president of BoeFly and a member of the VBF Board of Directors. “We created the Veterans Business Fund to provide veterans with the supplemental capital required to satisfy the equity requirements for a small

business loan, and ultimately help make it possible for them to apply their military experience to owning a business while creating jobs and helping to boost our economy.”

VBF sources its funds from charitable contributions from generous donors, individuals, corporations and foundations.

“In my position at TD Bank and as an Air Force and Navy veteran myself, I understand the challenging environment many veterans face when looking for small business loans and I am keenly aware so many are immensely qualified to run their own businesses,” said Richard Bradshaw, head of SBA programs at TD Bank and a member of the National Association of Government Guaranteed Lenders Board of Directors. “The VBF’s goal to help veterans get the equity needed for a bank loan is a key initiative to bridge this gap and help veterans get on track to secure loans under highly favorable terms, and it means a great deal to me to lend my support to this valuable organization.”

Members of VBF’s Advisory Board include:

● Peter Blanck, Chairman, Syracuse University’s Burton Blatt Institute
● Richard Bradshaw, Head of SBA Programs at TD Bank, NA; Captain USAF (Ret.), Graduate of USAF Academy
● Steve Caldeira, CEO, the International Franchise Association
● Julie Houston, SBA Division President, U.S. Bank
● Darrell Johnson, President and CEO, FRANdata
● Gordon Logan, CEO and Founder, Sport Clips, Inc.; USAF pilot 1969-1974
● Jeff Nager, SBA Division Executive, SunTrust
● Penn Ritter, President and CEO, Business Lenders
● Deryl Schuster, President Midwest Community Bank
● Steve Smits, General Manager, Live Oak Bank; former SBA Associate  Administrator
● David Starfield, Managing Partner, Starfield and Smith, PC
● Tony Wilkinson, CEO & President, National Association of Government
Guaranteed Lenders
● Ken Yancey, CEO, SCORE

For more information about VBF, please visit http://www.veteransbusinessfund.org.

About the Veterans Business Fund

The Veterans Business Fund (VBF) is a not-for-profit organization. It was established in response to the high unemployment rate among veterans, many of whom are well qualified through their military experience to become successful small business owners but lack sufficient equity capital to qualify for a small business loan.

VBF assists veterans by providing them with the supplemental capital required to satisfy the equity requirements for a small business loan. VBF provides capital to veterans in the form of a low-interest loan with very favorable terms. All principal and interest paid to the fund are made available to future veteran entrepreneurs requiring assistance in meeting the equity requirements for a small business loan.

VBF was created with the support of Syracuse University’s Burton Blatt Institute, the International Franchise Association’s VetFran program, SunTrust, Business Lenders and others. For more information, please visit http://www.veteransbusinessfund.org.

Media inquiries:

Bill Fallon | keating/co. | 212.925.6900 | bfallon@keatingco.com

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Source:Veterans Business Fund
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Industry:Small business, Finance
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