Two northeastern Wisconsin towns make the list with most veteran-owned businesses


WISCONSIN, (WFRV) — Two local communities in Wisconsin ranked highest in a recent report highlighting the number of businesses owned by veterans.

According to the US Department of Veterans Affairs, approximately 19 million veterans live in America. A HireAHelper report said about 8.4 million veterans were part of the “civilian workforce” as of October 2021.

The company explained that there are differences between veteran and non-veteran business owners. Here are some of the highlights of the report:

  • Veteran business owners seem to value three things: being their own boss, working for themselves, and wanting to start their own business more strongly.
  • HireAHelper points out that non-veterans are more likely to have flexible hours and a better work-life balance.

The report shows veterans own nearly 6% of employing businesses overall – some of the top industries with veteran entrepreneurs include oil and gas, finance, professional services, manufacturing, construction and transportation.

Do the math – where the data comes from

To determine which locations had the most veteran-owned businesses, HireAHelper researchers said they calculated the share of employer businesses (businesses with paid employees) owned by veterans. The researchers said they also included statistics on the total number of veteran-owned businesses, employees, and revenue at those businesses, as well as the share of veteran population in each location.

The data they used comes from the US Census Bureau’s Annual Business Survey 2020 and the US Census Bureau 2020 American Community Survey.

Most veteran-owned businesses

HireAHelper explained that California, Texas and Florida are the top three states with the highest total number of veteran-owned businesses in the country.

Specifically in Brown County, HireAHelper said analysis showed the Green Bay metro area had 4.2% veteran-owned businesses — a total of 272 businesses employing 3,793 workers. It ranked 41 in the small metro group.

Annual revenues of these veteran-owned businesses range from $500 million to less than $1 billion, with the share of the veteran population at 7.3%.

In a recent map, the report showed that Appleton was the only small metro area in Wisconsin to make the top 15 with the most veteran-owned businesses — ranking 11th at 8.2%. Higher than Green Bay.

Where some are in northeast Wisconsin

Wisconsin as a whole showed it ranged from 5% to 6% in veteran-owned business shares on another map. Ranking 28th out of all states.

The Wisconsin State Department of Veterans Affairs website features several veteran-owned businesses in the area. Below is a small sample list:

Data from Start-up statistics from the US Census Bureau also showed that the top overall new business types from 2020 to 2021 were in retail trade (including e-commerce), professional services, construction, transportation and warehousing.

Overall, the report found that veterans were the least likely to own businesses in the arts, entertainment, education and restaurant industries.

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