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Commerce’s U.S. Census Bureau Provides First-Ever Look at Veteran Business Ownership

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New data released today by the U.S. Census Bureau for the first time provides detailed information on veteran-owned businesses in the United States. It shows U.S. military veterans owned 2.4 million businesses in 2007, which accounted for 9 percent of all businesses nationwide. Veteran-owned businesses generated $1.2 trillion in receipts, or about 4.1 percent of all business receipts in 2007, and employed nearly 5.8 million people.

Businesses in which veterans were majority or half-owners numbered 3.7 million, representing 13.5 percent of all businesses nationwide and accounting for more than $1.6 trillion in receipts in 2007. These 3.7 million businesses employed 8.2 million people.

This new data come from the Survey of Business Owners: Veteran-Owned Businesses: 2007, which reports the number of veteran-owned firms in the United States, their sales and receipts, number of paid employees and annual payroll. Today’s release is the first of its kind to track business ownership by America’s veterans.

The three states with the largest number of veteran-owned businesses in 2007 were California, Texas and Florida. California had 239,422 veteran-owned businesses, representing 9.8 percent of all veteran-owned businesses in the United States. Texas had 199,476 businesses, or 8.1 percent, and Florida was home to 176,727 businesses, or 7.2 percent. Nearly one-third of veteran-owned businesses operated in the professional, scientific, and technical services and construction sectors.

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