As a peer-to-peer lender, we fund veteran small businesses with small business loans and lines of credit that are backed by investors who support veterans. Here's the story of one of our many veteran investors who proudly supports veteran-owned small businesses. Furthermore, his member username is ISupportVets. He explains why he invests in businesses on StreetShares, as written in his own words.
What is the significance behind your username “ISupportVets”?
The ISupportVets username accurately describes the primary reason that I invest as a StreetShares Pro member, because I do support veterans. I assist veterans through several organizations and see StreetShares as another way to support them. I really like being able to give veterans a hand up by promoting their veteran owned small businesses.
Why do you prefer investing in veterans?
I have a lot of respect for veterans and the sacrifices they and their families make and have made to defend America. I am a veteran and have an affinity toward veteran business owners. I believe the mutual affinity between a veteran investor and a veteran business owner increases the probability that the loan will be paid back.
What about veterans makes them great entrepreneurs?
Creating a successful business requires a number of good qualities such as discipline, ambition, hard work, the drive to successfully accomplish the mission, refusing to quit when to going gets tough, etc. Military training and experience develops these types of qualities into veterans. I believe that success in the military is a good indicator for success as a small business owner. I am currently a small business co-owner and understand many of the challenges that small business owners face.
Can you tell us a bit about your military service?
I started my military service at age 17, attending the United States Military Academy at West Point. After graduation, I served 22 years in the Army. I served in the Infantry branch, Military Intelligence branch, and the Army Acquisition Corps in the U.S. and overseas at ten different military installations. After retirement from the Army, I supported the military as a contractor for ten years.
How did you hear about StreetShares? What was it about StreetShares that captured your attention as an investor?
I learned about StreetShares from Peter Renton, the founder of Lend Academy. In my opinion, Lend Academy is the premier website for education about peer-to-peer (P2P) investing, person-to-business investing (P2B), and other marketplace investing.
What captured my attention about StreetShares was the opportunity to support veterans with a hand up by lending money to help veteran owned small businesses. I also like the “personal” side of StreetShares where I have to opportunity to learn more about what each business does and the background of the veteran business owner. I first read about P2P and P2B investing in 2007 and totally believed in the concept. I liked the opportunity it gave me to help others and make a good return on investment. I also liked the concept of disintermediation, cutting out the middlemen, which, in this case, are the large banks. I have invested at Prosper and Lending Club for a number of years, so investing at StreetShares to support veterans is a good fit for me.
Is there anything else you would like to share about your experience as an investor on StreetShares?
Before I invest, I do my own due diligence. StreetShares Co-founder and CEO Mark L. Rockefeller invited me to visit the office. I took him up on his offer so that I could perform my own evaluation of the people behind StreetShares. I met Mark, COO Mickey Konson, and all the staff. I was very impressed with their enthusiasm, intelligence, education, and drive to make StreetShares better and more successful. I definitely felt more comfortable investing at StreetShares after the visit.
Know Before You Invest
Deciding where to put your money is a big decision. We're here to help you understand what's involved when investing in veteran small business at StreetShares as a StreetShares Pro member or when purchasing Veteran Business Bonds. We're not here to tell you where to invest your money, we're not an investment management firm, and we do not have registered investment advisors. But we are dedicated to providing helpful resources. "Mission: Retirement" gives three steps to take when creating a sound strategy for retirement. Download it now for a quick three-step process.
This article is an interview from a StreetShares Pro member. It is also generic in nature and should not be regarded as investment advice.