The PenFed Foundation’s Veteran Entrepreneur Investment Program (VEIP) propels veteran-led companies to new heights. We offer a variety of programs that support veteran entrepreneurs of companies ranging from the idea stage through to Series A and beyond. At any stage, VEIP will better prepare founders for fundraising efforts and bring clarity to the elusive process of accessing capital.
Top Cities: Each year, VEIP teams up with Edelman Intelligence, a global survey analytics firm, 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. These include public support for veterans, ease of doing business, economic growth, and quality of life. The highest ranked cities are placed on the map for their rich veteran entrepreneur ecosystems. For any founder, knowing where to establish a business is a big decision and our Top Cities study is here to help.
We also host webinars throughout the year that aim to engage military and veteran entrepreneurs through education, access to resources, and networking connections. With the aim of inspiring and preparing founders to grow their businesses, these webinar labs will cover one or more of the following topics: Start-up Financials; “Investors: Who, What, When & Where”; Pitch Preparation Boot Camps; Leadership & Access to Capital; and Types of Funding to Scale Your Business.
The year-long Master’s Program is the nation’s top accelerator program to prepare growth-stage, veteran-owned start-ups to raise investor funds to scale their company and tackle the hurdles of accessing capital. In contrast to other incubator and accelerator programs, the Master’s Program is at no cost to founders. The success of this program comes from bringing together thought leaders, experts, entrepreneurs, investors, and others. The 50+ alumni of our Master’s Program, who have made important contributions to the business landscape all over the world, are committed to supporting America’s military veterans.
The program kicks off with an in-residence retreat, followed by a six-week due diligence boot camp. A typical week includes a weekly virtual class, mentor meetings and one-on-ones with both subject matter experts and a coach throughout the rest of the week. After week six, founders pitch in-person to leading investors and funds at our Demo Day. The journey does not stop after Demo Day, as VEIP continues its support in advisory roles to help you through successfully accessing capital, grow, and scale.
VEIP’s Investment operation is a full venture fund, which is structured off the program-related investment (PRI) fund model. The investment fund provides a steady stream of capital to select veteran-owned businesses. Gains from our portfolio investments are reinvested in the fund for future veteran entrepreneurs.
Since 2018, the PenFed Foundation VEIP program, through its two funds, has invested nearly $10,000,000 in 20 veteran-owned companies.
Access to capital is of the most difficult parts of entrepreneurship. There are an overwhelming number of shades of money from friends, family, angel, and institutional financing. In addition to seed capital investments, VEIP provides founders access to a broader ecosystem of capital investment programs and funders. Vets are good bets – we offer a dynamic network to equip veteran founders with all financing needs.