Congratulations to our top four finalists!
All four companies will participate in a pitch competition on October 15 to determine who receives the top grant prize of $25,000!
ABOUT THE IGNITION CHALLENGE
Amidst the pandemic, the PenFed Foundation Veteran Entrepreneur Investment Program (VEIP) realized the opportunity to prepare and strengthen veteran-owned small businesses to better serve the economy and create meaningful jobs. Military entrepreneurs are perfectly poised to act on this opportunity, as they have the resourcefulness, grit, and flexibility needed to succeed.
VEIP’s Ignition Challenge is a competition in which military entrepreneurs with a new business or an idea for a business can identify their business impact and goals, compete for votes, and winners will receive both funding and mentorship.
MILITARY ENTREPRENEURS OF COLOR
Veteran-owned businesses made up about 5.9 percent (337,934) of all businesses, with an estimated $947.7 billion in receipts, approximately 3.9 million employees, and about $177.7 billion in annual payroll. (U.S. Census Bureau, 2021).
- Nine percent of Hispanic, Latino, and Asian/Pacific Islander veterans are self-employed.
- Fifty-one percent of Black veteran entrepreneurs started their business to be a financially independent. (IVMF, 2020-2021).
Veterans face challenges building professional networks and accessing capital, and these challenges are compounded for veterans of color. The PenFed Foundation is committed to supporting these vitally important members of the community and economy.
All Ignition Challenge applicants must agree and adhere to Terms & Conditions.