StreetShares, an online lender providing access to capital for SMEs, announced this week its new self-titled foundation announced its Veterans Small Business Awards. The organization teamed up with JP Morgan Chase to provide up to $10,000 each month to vets who own a business. StreetShares revealed it conducted a similar award program last year and just donated $35,000. The award winners notably increased their revenues by more than $1 million, hired 24 new employees and were featured on Shark Tank.
Prior to announcing the awards, StreetShares announced the formation of the foundation. The lender explained that StreetShares Foundation’s mission is to inspire, educate and support veteran small business owners. Mark L. Rockefeller, CEO/Co-Founder of StreetShares and also an Iraq War Veteran, stated:
“The goal of the Foundation is to provide a new generation of veteran small business owners with the support they need to thrive.”
The StreetShares Foundation’s current plans is to give three Veteran Small Business Awards each month to eligible small businesses: First place ($5,000), Second Place ($3,000), and Third Place ($2,000). Small businesses owned by military veterans, current reserve or active duty members and qualified military spouses are eligible to apply. The types of small businesses include government or defense contracting, retail, restaurant owners, e-commerce and more are welcomed to apply. The funding portal then added:
“To apply, veteran business owners must write a summary of their business and create an original video telling the Foundation what they plan to use the award for and why we should choose them. Judging criteria is based on their business idea, what customer need they are filling, their team and company history, how they plan to use the award and the influence of the business on the military and veteran community.”