CARY N.C. — Representative Garland E. Pierce recently participated in a roundtable discussion about fostering veteran entrepreneurship in North Carolina.
As vice chairman of the Homeland Security, Military and Veterans Affairs House Standing Committee at the North Carolina General Assembly, Representative Pierce thought it was necessary to join in on this important discussion.
The host of the roundtable was the Carolina Small Business Development Fund. The roundtable was a discussion of how veteran-owned small businesses have been a key part of the nation’s economy.
It was noted at the roundtable that many members are excited about the opportunity to expand their programs for veterans, as they strive to inspire economic empowerment and business capacity to help veteran small business owners to build the businesses of their dreams.
Pierce noted that one million service members will transition out of the military over the next five years. Nearly a quarter of these men and women will try to start their own businesses, but only 4.5 percent will succeed due to lack of access to capital and networking. Nine percent of all businesses in the United States are veteran-owned, representing nearly six million employees and $1.2 trillion in sales.
In North Carolina, a state with a rich military history, veteran-owned business account for 8.2 percent of all employment, and maintain an annual payroll of $4.7 billion.
“I’m hoping that veterans in Richmond, Robeson, Scotland and Hoke counties will take advantage of this very important opportunity,” Pierce said. “Particularly those who have the entrepreneurial spirit.”
For more information, contact Malee Kirk, CSBDF veteran entrepreneurship program director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 919-867-5280.