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By Debbie Gregory.

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Part 2 of 3


Below are some Census statistics related to which industries, job functions, business types, state concentrations are more likely to be filled with veterans as well as some information on the characteristics veterans starting and running these businesses.


Veteran Owned Employer Establishment Numbers:

The 442,485 veteran-owned employer firms in 2012 operated 501,003 separate establishments. Those operating in only one industry (by two-digit NAICS code) represented 99.3 percent of all firms and 91.8 percent of all establishments. Veteran owned employers operating in multiple industries represented only 0.7 percent of firms but had 8.2 percent of establishment’s sales and receipts.

  • More than half of all veteran-owned firms (55.8 percent) had annual sales of less than $25,000, and over one-third (34.9 percent) had annual sales of less than $10,000. These shares mirrored those for all firms, and they include all firms that reported business income of $1,000 or more in 2012. Accordingly, many part-time business activities were included.
  • 6 percent of veteran-owned employer firms had sales of $100,000 or more, and 37.6 percent had sales of $500,000 or more.
  • Among veteran non-employers, 10.1 percent had sales of $100,000 or more, while only 0.9 percent had sales of $500,000 or more.


Number of Employees:

Most veteran-owned employer firms are very small.

  • 5 percent of all veteran-owned employer firms have one to four employees;
  • 3 percent have from one to nine employees;
  • 6 percent have from one to nineteen; • 9.0 percent have twenty or more; and
  • 2 percent have more than fifty.


Veteran Owned Firms by Gender, Ethnicity & Race:  

The majority ownership of veteran-owned firms was overwhelmingly male (84.3 percent), non-Hispanic (92.9 percent) and white (85.1 percent). Women owned 15.2 percent of all veteran-owned businesses, and self-identified minorities owned 20.6 percent.


Majority Ownership Shares by Ethnicity & Race:

  • African American (10.7 percent);
  • Hispanic (7.0 percent);
  • Asian American (2.1 percent);
  • American Indian or Alaska Native (1.3 percent)
  • Native Hawaiian or other Pacific Islander (0.3 percent); and
  • Some other race (2.2 percent).


States with the Most Veteran Owned Firms in Order:

  • California (252,377),
  • Texas (213,590),
  • Florida (185,756),
  • New York (137,532) and
  • Pennsylvania (97,969).


States with Highest Veteran Owned Sales:

  • California ($135.1 billion),
  • Texas ($109.9 billion),
  • Florida ($57.7 billion),
  • New York ($55.8 billion), and
  • Pennsylvania ($50.3 billion).


States By Percentage:

Ranking states by their percentage of veteran-owned firms controls for differences in state population size. The states with the highest percentages of veteran-owned firms were:

  • South Carolina (13.0 percent),
  • New Hampshire (12.2 percent),
  • Virginia (11.7 percent),
  • Alaska (11.7 percent), and
  • Mississippi (11.4 percent).


States with Highest Percentages of Sales by Veteran Owned Firms:

  • New Hampshire (6.2 percent),
  • Nevada (4.8 percent),
  • South Carolina (4.7 percent),
  • Mississippi (4.7 percent), and
  • Tennessee (4.6 percent).


Veteran Owned Firms Contribute to the economies of many states and our nation.