Local Business - Conspire! Waiving Franchise Fee For A Veteran

Friday, November 11, 2011

The Colorado Springs-based drug screening company Conspire! is among a group of franchisors nationally leading a new effort to boost employment and business ownership among veterans.

Conspire! CEO Lynette Crow is offering a free franchise to a qualified veteran, a roughly $100,000 savings. Several other franchisors, such as the UPS Store, are also waiving franchise fees for some veterans.

"Whatever area they decide to put the franchise in, we're going to make sure it's one that is going to work well with our model," Crow said. "We want to have them ready to go by the first of the year, so we're going to move pretty quickly." The Veteran's Day push is part of a new initiative from the International Franchise Association's VetFran program dubbed "Operation Enduring Opportunity" that aims to boost veteran hiring with recruitment goals, as well as getting vets to open franchises themselves. The association, which represents 1,100 franchises, is committed to hiring 80,000 veterans and spouses by 2014. That number includes 5,000 wounded warriors.

Unemployment is particularly high among veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Labor Department estimates that 12.1 percent of veterans who served in the military since the Sept. 11 attacks were unemployed in October. That compares with the national rate of 9 percent. Among veterans under the age of 24, the rate was closer to 22 percent.

The International Franchise Association is also pushing for new legislation to allow veterans to put GI bill education funds toward opening a business. The group says more than 66,000 veterans already own franchises.

Crow is setting up a website, conspire4vets.com, for the franchise giveaway. Applicants need to submit a three-minute video.

Veterans have a good track record of successfully operating franchises, Crow said.

"People are saying, ‘You're doing this to sell franchises,' that's true but we have so many unemployed veterans and they're such great franchisees," Crow said. "With a franchise, you're in business for yourself, but not by yourself." Read more: http://www.gazette.com/articles/franchise-128219-veteran-conspire.html#ixzz1dcjYZDg0

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1495 Garden of the Gods Rd.
Suite # 102
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Phone: 719.355.1403

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