From the Mayor's Office of Communications
Houston was named one of the top cities in the U.S. for veterans to start a small business by Thumbtack, an app and website that connects customers with local service providers.
“We appreciate our veterans for not only defending our country, but they are also a vital part of the fabric of our business community,” said Mayor Sylvester Turner. “We have thousands of veterans who have been able to use their military training while learning new skills in order to become successful entrepreneurs and role models.”
Top Five Cities for Veterans in the U.S.
3. Charlotte, North Carolina
4. Fort Worth
5. Los Angeles
Veterans continue to do more than their fair share after leaving the military: More than one-in-four veterans in the workforce are running their own business, a rate that is 7.7 percentage points greater than the national average, according to the Census Bureau.
“We know what a lot of employers know – veterans make great employees. It is also true that veterans are natural entrepreneurs and make great business owners. For the past few years, our office has worked a variety of local partners to build programs in Houston to help Veterans launch their own businesses. This collaborative effort is bearing fruit and we are seeing more and more Veteran startups, which is helping to drive a strong local economy. My office will continue to do everything possible to guide and nurture Houston veteran entrepreneurs,” said Carl Salazar, Director of Veteran Affairs, Mayor’s Office.
As part of Thumbtack's 2017 Small Business Friendliness Survey, they asked 1,371 veteran-small-business-owners on Thumbtack to evaluate their local governments’ support for businesses like theirs to determine the best communities for veterans to start, manage and grow a small business. The veterans interviewed for this study noted a military background alone isn’t sufficient to develop a thriving business; another factor they pointed to is a supportive community. While every business’ needs are different, the study indicates operating in a place where veteran-owned businesses are valued by clients, bankers, suppliers, and others can provide a leg up in the harrowing process of starting and growing a small business.
Sean Williams, a fence installer in Houston, called out the city for fostering a strong network of veterans. “The veteran community here is great," he said. "I have many friends who are veterans and own businesses. There are a lot of events and benefits that we participate in and meet a lot of people doing it.”
Top Occupations for Veterans on Thumbtack (as of November 2017)
2. Landscaper / Lawncare Professional
3. General Contractor
6. Outdoor Cleaner
7. House Cleaner
8. Junk Remover
10. Window and Door Specialist
11. Flooring Professional
14. Fence Installer
17. Personal Trainer
18. Furniture Assembler
19. Concrete Professional
20 Computer and Device Repair Specialist
*To locate veteran entrepreneurs to highlight, please reach out to Carl Salazar at Carl.Salazar@houstontx.gov and Darian Ward at Darian.Ward@houstontx.gov.