Veteran and milspouse entrepreneurs: level-up your startup
Top Cities: Each year, VEIP teams up with Edelman Intelligence and the Pritzker Military Foundation, to identify the Top US Cities for Veteran Entrepreneurs. The study ranks cities based on several key factors critical to the success of Veteran entrepreneurs including public support for Veterans, ease of doing business, economic growth, and quality of life. The highest ranked cities are recognized for their rich Veteran entrepreneur ecosystems. Knowing where to establish a business and livelihood is a big decision – the Top Cities report is here to help.
We also host webinars throughout the year that engage entrepreneurs with education, access to resources, and networking connections. These webinar labs cover topics such as:
- Start-up Financials and Accounting
- “Investors: Who, What, When & Where”
- Pitch Preparation Boot Camps
- Leadership & Access to Capital
- Types of Funding to Scale Your Business
2023 Top U.S. Cities for Veteran Entrepreneurs
Despite current economic uncertainties, many Veteran-owned small businesses have continued to thrive. How? Cities that have cultivated a strong ecosystem for Veteran and milspouse founders to succeed.
Did YOUR city make the list?
Fundraising Accelerator Exclusively for Veteran and Milspouse Founders.
The Master’s Program is the nation’s top accelerator program for Veteran and milspouse founders. The accelerator will prepare highly-scalable, venture-backable startups to raise investor funds and scale. The Master’s Program is a no cost, expenses covered, zero equity accelerator program. VEIP brings together thought leaders, experts, entrepreneurs, and investors who are eager to support you access capital.
The program kicks off with a four-day, in-residence retreat in Virginia, followed by a six-week virtual due diligence boot camp. A typical week of bootcamp includes virtual classes, mentor meetings, and one-on-ones with both subject matter experts and a coach.
After week six, founders return to Virginia to pitch to leading investors and funds at our in-person Demo Day. Afterwards, VEIP continues to play an advisory role to support you access capital, growing, and scaling.
This is an industry agnostic accelerator: the Master’s Program is open to all Veteran and milspouse founders with highly-scalable startups. We’re looking for startups that are legally-established, have a venture-backable business model, and are staged for substantial growth.
MASTER’S PROGRAM ACCELERATOR | Key Elements
The Master’s Program provides 3 offerings designed to prepare entrepreneurs for growth:
- Opening retreat for founders
- Fundraising coaching & bootcamps on topics such as pitching, media training, financials, and legal
- Networking with investors and entrepreneurs at the Master’s Mixer and Demo Day events
VEIP’s Investment operation is a full venture fund with an investment thesis that veteran founders are most capable of building world class enterprises. Our fund, which follows the program-related investment (PRI) model, provides capital to select veteran-owned businesses. Gains from our portfolio investments are reinvested into the foundation and fund – all at the benefit of future veteran entrepreneurs.
Since 2018, the PenFed Foundation VEIP program, through its two funds, has invested over $7,000,000 in 20 Veteran-owned companies.
What Makes Us Different
- We only invest in Veteran-owned and Veteran-led companies.
- We are industry agnostic.
- Capital gains are invested back into the foundation
- We coinvest with other prominent vet-oriented VC’s and angel groups – we introduce all founders to a wide network of service driven investors
Our #1 goal is to help Veteran and milspouse entrepreneurs access capital.
Investment Decision Process
Through participation in the Master’s Program accelerator or referrals, companies are determined eligible for our due diligence process. Those with strong business models, excellent economics, and outstanding founders are put before the investment committee. The committee comprises PenFed Foundation leadership and close investor partners, who make the final determination whether to invest. If investment is approved, the VEIP team then works closely with founders on investment deal terms (if not already set by a lead investor).
Through a founder’s entire lifecycle, the VEIP team offers:
- Business coaching and advising
- Help with accounting, audit, and reporting procedures
- Introductions to additional sources of financing
- Offer marketing, advertising, and public relations expertise to increase brand awareness