Veterans and service leavers have always had restrictions placed upon them when apply to access funding and particularly business loans.
Setting up and running your own business requires courage, determination and a strong work ethic. These are attributes which service leavers have in spades, and why self-employment is a route well worth considering by those coming towards the end of their time in the Armed Forces.
Research suggests there are currently approximately 340,000 small enterprises across Great Britain run by veterans.
We share funding options for business owners to get the help and commercial loans for veterans they need to start and grow their businesses.
Who are Veterans in the UK
According to Annual Population Survey UK: UK Armed Forces Veterans residing in Great Britain in 2017 there are thought to be around 2.5 million UK-based, armed forces veterans. At the moment around 4% of ex serviceman and women will go and start their own business; this number could definitely quickly rise.
Veterans in the UK are classed as those that have received at least one day’s pay from the armed forces, serving in any of the following: The Royal Air Force, The Royal Navy or The Army.
We aim to help veterans and service leavers to go onto building their future businesses with the use of our loans and methods of funding. We have specially designed programs for ex serviceman and women to received business boosting funds.
Your military service doesn’t necessarily need to have come to an end, you may still be serving in the forces and are simply looking ahead to your future life. Either way, you can contact PDQ Funding today in order to receive further information and get a free quote on your potential business loan.
The Office for Veterans’ Affairs (OVA) is a new Ministerial unit in the Cabinet Office with responsibility for championing veteran interests at the heart of government. It is designed to highlight the outstanding contribution veterans from all walks of life are already making to our economy and society and ensuring no individual who needs help is left behind after they leave service
Who is classed as a Veteran in the UK
Veterans are defined as anyone who has served for at least one day in Her Majesty’s Armed Forces (Regular or Reserve) or Merchant Mariners who have seen duty on legally defined military operations.
A “Service Leaver” is a term for someone who is in transition from or has ceased to be a member of HM Armed Forces. The term “Service Leaver” is typically used in legal documents, as understanding and use of the term “veteran” does vary, not least amongst those who have served. Many former Armed Forces personnel in the UK do not define themselves as “veterans”.
- There are estimated to be 2.5 million Armed Forces veterans residing in households across Great Britain.
- Veterans are estimated to make up five per cent of household residents aged 16+ in England and Scotland, and six percent of household residents aged 16+ in Wales.
- Veterans are estimated to be predominantly male (90%) with the majority aged over 65 (nearly two- thirds). This will change in the coming years.
Settling back in Civvi Street
It’s sad that many of our brave service men and women struggle to settle back into society and maintain a regular workflow after their service comes to an end. This is why we hope that more veterans will begin to go into business after being in the military. Starting a new business can give you something to aspire towards and shift your focus onto, allowing your mind to be once again occupied with a positive motivational way of thinking.
For any further personal help needed, the NHS have now confirmed that every part of the country has dedicated mental health services set up for veterans and announced the first 25 hospitals to have become ‘Veteran Aware’. These will deliver specialist help and healthcare to those who have served in the past.
Business Plan Help for Veterans
We have devised a business plan for veterans this is an annotated version of the Business Plan template to issue to with Business Advisers about what type of information, examples and evidence to include in order to help us understand you and your business. While we encourage you to use this template, it is not mandatory and you are welcome to submit your own Business Plan template provided it details similar information.
Please note, the following documents should open on any device with a document viewer and editor but for the best user experience, we recommend editing this template on a desktop.
Why is a Business Plan important?
There are many great reasons why it is worth your time creating a Business Plan – even if you’re not quite ready to apply for a Veteran Start Up Loan. Here are just seven:
A Business Plan:
- Provides a structured way of organising your thoughts and clarifying your idea.
- Helps you set out your goals and spot any potential problems in achieving these goals.
- Gives you a clear strategy to follow when things get busy.
- Is often essential for securing external finance for your business (and is required if you’re applying for a Veteran Start Up Loan).
- Allows you to measure your progress as you go along.
- Ensures all of your team are working towards the same vision.
- Helps you plan for the future.
Financing Options for Veteran Owned Businesses
As we mentioned earlier, you will want to cast a wide net when looking for small business financing, the more options you look at, the easier it will be to find a solution to your need. We understand that one loan will never suit all, so we’ve provided a solution that can help all types of business owners.
1. Merchant cash advance
Merchant cash advances many many positives for businesses to take advantage of. Every business owner runs into the need for working capital from time to time. But where do you go to get it, especially when your bank won’t even consider your funding request? There is a finance solution for businesses that take credit cards & debit card payments.
In fact, you could get cash from the sales you haven’t even made yet. Turn tomorrow’s credit & debit card sales into today’s cash flow. There is no faster, safer or easier way to get unsecured business funding. The business cash advance is classed as a short term working capital loan. This is because they have a term time of a maximum 18 – 24 months.
The amount of money you are offered from a lender will be based on your average monthly card sales. Typically the more money you make each month, the more money you will be able to borrow.
When it comes to paying the money back, repayments are taken automatically as a small percentage of future card sales. For each customer card transaction your business processes using a designated terminal, a small amount will be automatically withdrawn.
This type of funding offers businesses an instant cash injection between £5,000 and £200,000. You can then repay the money comfortably, using a small percentage of future customer card payments.
- Access £5k to £200,000
- Funding in as little as 48 hours
- Get up to 150% of your monthly card turnover
2. Business Credit Cards
Business credit cards can be an appealing option for startups as well as more established businesses that want the flexibility of a credit line they can tap when needed. We cited earlier this you that Veteran business owners are more likely to tap business credit cards, like capital on tap than their non-veterans counterparts.
Ever wondered what Crowdfunding is? this type of funding option allows you raise money online from backers who are interested in supporting small businesses.
There are several types of crowdfunding available, including:
- Commission-based: You offer a tangible commission for those who contribute to your campaign
- Equity-based: You give others the opportunity to invest in your company, often by offering shares in your company.
- Lending-based: You borrow money that will be repaid back.
Finding the right platform and crafting an effective campaign to win investors takes work, but the fact that you have served in the UK Armed Forces may be appealing to some backers on these platforms.
4. Small Business Loans
A small business loan should be on your list of financing options to consider for your veteran-owned business. These loans attractive competitive rates of interest and terms for those who qualify for this funding option which does not require security, such as valuable business assets. Term loans are offered over a fixed period of up-to five years.
This means a veteran owned businesses can secure business financing without risking the loss of important assets such as equipment, property, or land.
This type of business loan provide greater flexibility, giving veteran business owners the opportunity to quickly fund their company hassle-free.
- Borrow between £5,000 and £200,000
- Receive quick funding in just 24 hours
- Repay in scheduled monthly instalments
- Short to medium repayment terms
Why apply for a veteran business loan?
For veterans that are looking to set up a business, one of the first things they’ll come to realise is the large amount of costs that come with a new venture. Starting a company from scratch is very costly in today’s current climate and you’ll need excessive funding to do so. The veteran business loan can give you the financial push a new business owner needs, without going through the stressful and often disappointing experience of applying for high street banking business loans.
Though, the funding you receive from a veteran business loan can in fact be used in any way you desire. Perhaps you already have your business up and running and are now looking to expand on it in other ways. You may want use the funds you receive for things such as hiring new staff, boosting your stock levels, finding a new location for your company, or even making improvements to an office space you currently work in. As long as you believe it will advance your business, we will support you in the process.
Veteran entrepreneurs are slowly but surely becoming more common across the UK, with many choosing to become small business owners themselves. So, if you’re a veteran and you’ve come up with a sustainable, new business idea, contact PDQ Funding today to see what your options are, finding out what suits your aspirations best.
Female veteran business loans
Only around one in five businesses are female lead in the UK today, but there is more than enough room for huge potential success for women in business. Gender should undoubtedly not have any effect on the success of a business and PDQ Funding appreciate that fact. Our female business loans are designed to close the gender gap that is currently surrounding UK business, and attempt to make the British market fairer for all.
Disabled veteran business loans
Suffering from a mental or physical disability can most certainly add challenges to any hopeful entrepreneur’s business life. Severe injuries can make it very challenging for service disabled veterans to fall back into the daily life of modern society. Though, there are many loans for disabled veteran business owners out there, and now thankfully, many options for all people to choose from.
Start-up small business loans for veterans
If you’re considering self-employment or starting a business the likelihood is that you will need funding at some point. As long as your business has yet to start, or you’ve been trading for less than two years, then we may be able to provide support via the Government’s Start Up Loans programme.
Working with Government to change policy to make this fund accessible to the armed forces community who were unable to get traditional or unsecured finance. As a result, we are now an official Delivery Partner of the Start Up Small Business Loans for Veterans scheme, administered by the British Business Bank, offering an unsecured personal loan at fixed interest rate, together with free mentoring and support to get your business idea off the ground.
- Loans of up to £25,000 (average of £11,000)
- Unsecured, personal loan for business purposes
- Borrow for up to 5 years
- 12 months’ free mentoring
- No early repayment penalties
- Access to free events and workshops
- Dedicated Business Advisor
Small Business Grants for Veterans
There are few ways to boost your prospects as a prospective or existing business owner than to access the grants that are available to ex-military personnel.
The Royal British Legion and RFEA – The Forces Employment Charity have partnered up to provide employment grants that help military veterans gain the skills they need to start a business. Two grants are currently available:
- Licenses grant – One-off grants of up to £250 are available to help ex-military personnel find work by obtaining a sector-specific licence e.g. obtaining a security licence.
- Training, travel, accommodation and equipment grant – If you want to take a training course to acquire the skills to run your own business, this one-off grant of up to £1,000 could be available to you.
Small business loans for veterans with bad credit
We are also able to support veterans in their ventures with our business loans. Our loans are unsecured, meaning you’ll not be expected to secure the finance you receive against any collateral or valuable assets. This is a clear positive for you because it loses the risk factor of a secured loan.
The company you run can borrow anything between £5,000 and £200,000, which will provide you with extra support and financial flexibility when you need it most.
As a veteran you can expect to have the funding supplied to your account very quickly, within as little as 24 hours. Once you have received the money, you will then be expected to start making repayments in monthly instalments, with interest rates included. These rates will be confirmed to you before the agreement for the funding is finalised. The application process is quick and simple, and can be completed entirely online in the space of just a few short minutes.
To be sure that your business is eligible for funding from us, you’ll need to be sure that it is all of the following:
- Registered in the United Kingdom
- Has been actively trading for a minimum of 6 months
- Takes a monthly turnover or monthly card sale transactions of at least £5,000
- Run by a business owner over the age of 18 years
- Run by a limited company and/ or a sole trader
When applying for an unsecured business loan, you’ll find it much easier than with a traditional high street bank loan, as it is a much speedier process and the risk factor is virtually none existent. If you believe your veteran-run business is in need of some extra funding and your venture matches the qualifying criteria listed above, apply for a business loan today and be matched with a member of our expert team that will help to guide you through the process.
Best Military Veteran networks for business owners
A supportive community filled with like-minded veteran business owners regardless if you run a blog or dream of becoming an entrepreneur, you should have a look at the following blogs and networks that offer meet-ups, networking events and provide readers with relevant and relatable advice to expand your business.
Here are four websites to we recommend that you check out if your are military veteran led business.
It maybe over the pond in the states, but still offers a great help to veterans in the UK, their mission and aims is to facilitate veterans doing business.They want to help with promoting your own business with a supportive community of people who have been in your shoes and still are!
Veteran owned is a UK based platform that offers support to businesses owned by serving members of the Armed Forces, Veterans and Spouses. it aims to provide members of the public with a user friendly directory to locate Veteran Owned Businesses.
The officers association is there to provide officers and their families with the support they need to thrive outside the Armed Forces.They also support officers in their transition into civilian employment or starting in business.
X-Forces Enterprise (XFE) supports the entire military community, so in particular: Service Leavers, Veterans, Spouses, Reservists, Family Members and Cadets. The offer training, funding and support for ex-military, veterans, service leavers and their families.
How to apply for a veteran small business loan
The following is a step by step guide to applying for a veteran small business loan or merchant cash advance:
Visit our application page and provide the relevant information. This will ensure that we match you with an ideal lender. We will then ask you for further information about your business. You’ll need to be ready to tell us the following:
- The name of your business
- How long you’ve been in business
- Your average monthly card sales
- The amount you are looking to borrow to cover your VAT bill obligations
Will will then require a few personal details, so please be ready to tell us:
- Your title, along with you first name and surname
- Position you hold within the business that is seeking a loan
- Email and telephone number, so that we can stay in further contact with you
Read through our terms and conditions carefully, and if you’re happy to continue, click ‘get a quote’. From here your application will be processed and reviewed by a member of our business finance suppliers team, who will help you find the correct lender for your emergency business loan.
We will then be in touch with you to confirm the conditions of your business loan agreement.
Once the application is complete, it will be sent off and approved by a lender. You can then have a discussion with them regarding the terms of the PDQ Finance. These terms will include interest rates, as well as how much the borrower will repay each month. The loan is then provided to you on an agreed and transparent basis. Final words don’t get jack off by other none veteran owned businesses! #SFSH
Do I have to be a Veteran in the UK to get a business loan?
We only provide funding to UK based veterans, ex British Army, Royal Navy & The Royal Airforce.
Can a Veteran get a business loan with bad credit
Yes we will try to help veterans with bad credit to get business loans, we understand that peoples credit history may not be the strongest.
Business grants for Veterans in the UK
There are business grants available for veterans in the UK, sadly we do not provide them. The Be the Boss campaign was announced by the Department for Business Innovation and Skills and has been developed in partnership with the Royal British Legion.