FASTSIGNS International Inc., the worldwide franchisor of FASTSIGNS® visual communications, signage and graphics centers, has maintained an active strategy to help veterans open their own businesses. In an ongoing effort to educate USA military veterans about the franchise industry, the company will be exhibiting at the upcoming National Veteran Small Business Conference and Expo.
The largest conference of its kind is scheduled to take place between 26th and 29th June 2012 at The Cobo Center in Detroit. Mark Jameson, FASTSIGNS Senior Vice President of Franchise Support & Development, will be hosting a booth at the show to speak with veterans about the company’s franchise opportunity.
“As a supporter of our country’s efforts to help our soldiers find jobs upon their return home from war, FASTSIGNS is committed to helping veterans realise their dream of opening their own business, Jameson said. “It is our goal to provide our franchise owners with the ongoing support that they need to achieve financial security for them and their family.”
Currently, 10 percent of the company’s U.S. franchise system is veterans. All veterans joining FASTSIGNS, such as Nathan Blythe, who is a former Captain in the U.S. Army and opened his FASTSIGNS franchise in December 2011, can take advantage of specific incentives, such as a 50% reduced franchise fee and reduced royalties in their first year of operation.
“Upon returning home from Iraq, I decided that I wanted to take on the adventure of being a business owner, so I started researching various franchise opportunities that were available,” Blythe said. “FASTSIGNS is an excellent choice for military veterans because the company provides a well-organised, proven system that helps set us up for success. The entire franchise system is a tight knit community and there is a true commitment from the owners and the corporate headquarters to support one another.”
Furthermore, as an activist to help veterans find jobs, starting in November 2011, FASTSIGNS committed to recruit nearly 200 veterans as part of a national hiring plan called Operation Enduring Opportunity. The plan is backed by the White House Joining Forced Initiative and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. The company also recently launched a strategic alliance with Sprigster, the nation’s only donation-based crowdfunding platform focused exclusively on franchising. Sprigster is currently working with franchisors like FASTSIGNS to qualify veterans for the “Boost a Hero” programme. The website also provides resources and coaching to assist the featured veterans in promoting their projects using social media tools. To honour FASTSIGNS for its continuous efforts in supporting veterans, the company has been recognised as a Top 50 Franchise for Veterans by the World Franchise Network.
“As we continue to work hard each and every day to extend career opportunities to our nation’s veterans, we commend FASTSIGNS and our members who are participating in the Detroit conference – they are setting the right example for our industry and our entire nation,” Beth Solomon, IFA’s Vice President of Strategic Initiatives & Industry Relations, said. “As July 4th approaches, the unemployment rate among some groups of veterans, who have literally fought for our independence, is as high as 18 percent. That’s why FASTSIGNS’ effort is so important, and so appreciated.”