Veteran Franchisee is The Voice for Veteran Franchisees Everywhere

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On May 7, 2014 Arlington, VA UPS Store Veteran franchisee Wade Franklin testified before the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Small Business.

Franklin and the other panelists discussed “Military to Entrepreneurship: Private Sector Initiatives to Help Veterans Pursue “The idea of owning a business seemed appealing, but he did not know how to get the ball rolling.”

Business Opportunities.” Franklin testified on behalf of The International Franchise Association’s VetFran, which supports Veterans and military spouses to enter the franchise industry as both business owners and employees.

From Honor to Owner

After leaving the Navy in February of 2012, Franklin was looking for employment opportunities. Franklin explains that the most prevalent prospects were corporate management jobs that many former junior officers are drawn to. He saw many of his friends take jobs in various corporations, but he did not necessarily want to go down that path.

However, he also was not sure where else to look. The idea of owning a business seemed appealing, but he did not know how to get the ball rolling on starting a business, or have an original idea or product to form a business around.

While searching for veteran opportunities, he came across VetFran, the International Franchise Association’s veterans transition program, and saw the financial incentives that hundreds of franchise systems offered to veterans who opened franchise businesses. One of the franchises that most appealed to Franklin was The UPS Store,

who also offered to waive their $30,000 franchise fee for the first ten veterans approved as franchise owners in 2012.

In addition to their generous financial incentive for veteran franchise owners, The UPS Store also partners with the USO, IFA, and Georgetown University to offer the Small Business and Franchise Management program to educate franchise executives and owners on franchising. Franklin noted that, a brand with an excellent reputation that was so actively recruiting veterans as franchise owners was obviously an appealing choice.

Franklin applied to become a franchise owner of a The UPS Store in January 2012 and was approved for a franchise the next month. He was one of the ten veterans that had their initial franchise fee waived.

With nearly one million veterans transitioning out of military service over the next five years, it is more important than ever that we help veterans re-integrate into the civilian economy. Our service men and women are looking forward to rejoining their families, going back to school, or starting their own businesses. It is both an economic necessity and a moral obligation for our country to facilitate this transition.

Veterans and Franchising – A Good Fit

Franchise systems have complex yet effective operations guidelines, and the franchise owners that can best execute the system are the owners who can realize the most success in their businesses. Many

of the qualities that make successful franchise business owners are found in our nation’s service men and women, while the training techniques used in the military provide a significant skill set that is especially valuable in franchise owners. The attention to detail, situational awareness, and communications skills I learned in the Navy also translate very well to business ownership, and I don’t think I could have learned those skills better in any other environment. Above all else, veterans possess the leadership skills necessary to run a successful small business, and to persevere through tough times to keep that business running.

For these obvious reasons, franchise companies actively recruit veterans as franchisees, knowing that veteran-owned franchises tend to out-perform other locations. Wade Franklin’s full testimony can be found at the following link:

http://smallbusiness.house.gov/uploadedfiles/5-7-2014_franklin_testimonyfinal.pdf