Veterans Get a Dedicated Franchise Expo March 13-14, 2020

Mid-Atlantic Veterans Franchise Expo Advantage Franchisors

Everyone in the franchise development world knows that Veterans can be great franchisees that provide a high degree of discipline and commitment (among other positive traits) to make franchise concepts successful.

In fact, over 650 franchisors are members of the VetFran Program of the International Franchise Association (IFA).  These premier franchisors offer special incentives to attract Veteran candidates to their franchise systems. VetFran, teaming with VETToCEO and the Small Business Center at the Fayetteville Technical Community College (FTCC) is offering some unique advantages for franchisors who wish to access quality veteran franchise candidates.  Additionally, they will reach thousands of soldiers while they are transitioning from military to civilian life.  Over 27,000 veterans transition out of the service from bases in North Carolina every year.

The Expo will be located only 6 miles from the main gate of Fort Bragg, the largest military installation (by population) in the free world.  Fayetteville/Fort Bragg was also chosen because of the 5 other military installations nearby, and a population of over 390,000 Veterans within a 90-minute drive. The event will draw from database solicitations of over 50,000 from Expo partners and will be open to the public. The Expo will be backed by a strong campaign and will be featured in Fort Bragg Life newspaper.

One of the key sponsors of the Expo is VETToCEO, an entrepreneurial community with training resources and guidance that assists veterans in leveraging their skills to start or buy a business or franchise and run it successfully. VETToCEO is a nonprofit whose programs are designed and facilitated by experienced entrepreneurs who are also veterans, exclusively for veterans of all branches. They offer their program free of charge to qualified/verified members of the military and veterans. Since 2005, VetToCEO has been able to assist thousands of veterans through the generosity of leading corporations, grants, and individuals who have a passion for helping veterans.  The VETToCEO long goal is to replicate the Expo near multiple military transition points around the country.

According to Kent Hill, the Director of the FTCC Center for Innovation, Entrepreneurship & Small Business, “this Expo will be the first to leverage Fort Bragg transition programs such as ‘Boots to Business’ and the USO-NC ‘Pathfinder’ program which helps start hundreds of Veterans on their entrepreneurial journey each year.”

In addition, the Veterans Administration (VA) benefit liaisons on every base, can provide assistance qualifying and enrolling in the Vocational Rehabilitation & Employment (VRE) Self-Employment Program.  This Program is limited but offers support, such as business training and feasibility studies, for small business ideas, including franchises.   The program can’t fund franchise fees, but the costs associated with franchise training can be eligible.  To qualify, Veterans must have a disability rating of 20% or greater, and the ability to navigate the franchise discovery process for their preferred franchise.

Franchisors can sign up for a booth as several spots may still be available. There will also be information-only tables available from those Franchisors that can’t attend. But if you can attend you’ll get to have fun too.  The facility offers a unique virtual shooting contest that will challenge the best marksmen and award prizes for the best results.

For more information please click on the link above or call Kent Hill at (910) 678-8496.

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