FSBDC, UCF, Business Consulting

Florida Ranks 3rd for the Greatest Number of Veteran-Owned Businesses

imageMedia Release

Release Date: November 1, 2012
Contact: Cheryl.Kirby@FloridaSBDC.org


FSBDCN State Office: On November 11, Americans celebrate those who have served our country. There are over one million service men and women returning over the next five years, many having served multiple tours of duty. These veterans have the leadership, skills, and experience that have the ability to transfer into strong, job-creating businesses.

Currently, veterans own 2.45 million businesses in the United States, about 9% of America’s total businesses. These businesses employ approximately 6 million Americans. According to the March 2012 Report by the U.S. SBA Office of Advocacy highlighting veteran-owned businesses, Florida ranks 3rd for the greatest number of veteran-owned businesses. Florida has 176,727 veteran-owned businesses with revenue of $61.9 billion. Of these, 35,548 provide jobs for 310,154 people with an annual payroll of $10.6 billion.

The Interagency Task Force on Veterans Small Business Development, created in 2010 by President Obama, identified in their 2011 Report several areas in which veterans needed assistance. These areas included increasing opportunity for growth through capital and federal contracting opportunities; expanding consulting and training services; and reducing barriers to growth.

“America’s veterans deserve every opportunity possible to benefit from resources that could help them build successful small businesses and create jobs,” said Jerry Cartwright, State Director of the FSBDC Network. “The FSBDC Network provides targeted programs and services to help veterans successfully transition into owning and operating their own small business.”

Over the last 10 years, the FSBDC Network served 26,758 veterans through consulting, training and information, resulting in 1.1 million jobs created and saved; $284 million in sales revenue growth; $913.3 million in government contracts awarded; $53 million in capital accessed; and 795 new businesses created.

With the help of the SBDC at the University of South Florida in Tampa, veteran Giovanni Suarez was able to grow his one-man operation to a company averaging $2 million a year. Suarez’s business, National Information Assurance Corporation (NIACORP), offers information assurance, communications security and operational support to the federal government and national defense organizations. In 2012, Suarez was selected as the U.S. SBA’s South Florida Veteran Small Business Champion of the Year due to his efforts in advancing business ownership opportunities among veterans. Read Full Story