Free Mentoring And Networking For Military Entrepreneurs

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Sharks And Stripes 2: Camp Pendleton, CA, 13 June and live online.

Do you need a little help with your business idea? Are you growing your revenue but not sure how to reinvest it for growth? Are you worried about financing or interested in talking with an investor?

Image of Mr. Rey Ybarra standing on stage behind a podium to host the Sharks And Stripes entrepreneur conference |

Scenes from a previous Sharks And Stripes

Rey Ybarra has worked with entrepreneurs for years, and he even wrote the book about it. These days he tours the country with the entrepreneurs who have appeared on the television show “The Shark Tank”. Their next live event is in southern California, and it’s exclusively for military entrepreneurs.

Last year he piloted a similar, smaller event in Los Angeles. Its success convinced him to expand everything for this year. The 2017 gathering will host over 60 vendor tables for entrepreneurs who know what they want to do but who might want a little help to make it happen. Vendors will offer their advice and services in franchising, crowdsourcing, small-business loans, bookkeeping, pitching to investors, and even how to get on a reality show.

In addition, the meeting center will host seminars and appearances all day for audiences of 750-1000 people. (Confirmed speakers include military veteran Jerry Hancock, the Shark Tank Entrepreneur who founded Subzero Ice Cream.) The events will stream live on social media and the speakers will also talk with smaller groups and answer questions.

Sharks And Stripes 2 is free to active duty servicemembers and military veterans. A military ID card is needed to get in to Camp Pendleton, of course, and veterans will need a visitor’s pass to get through gate security.

General admission for everyone else is $19. 150 VIP passes are also available (for $99) to those who want more networking with personal access to the Shark Tank entrepreneurs in the speaker areas and during the two meal events.


More entrepreneur resources

What if you can’t be there?

If you’re not in southern California in June, then subscribe to RY Media’s mailing list (the “Register” section in the speaker image at the top of the page) for updates and other entrepreneur’s events. The Camp Pendleton event could easily sell out, and that means Mr. Ybarra will be running even more of them around the country.

If you’re not able to join these entrepreneurs then seek more resources in your local area. Read about more organizations and programs for military and veteran entrepreneurs and look for a chapter in a nearby city. The link at the bottom of that post opens a Google Doc with over 60 different national and local options for coaching, accelerators, financing, and even finding investors. If you’re a startup co-founder then please take a look at an accelerator program near you, or consider Blue Startups for their next 13-week program in Hawaii.

If you’re building your business online, perhaps with digital products or online sales funnels, then read through Pat Flynn’s Smart Passive Income site (including videos and podcasts with hundreds of entrepreneurs) and get quick answers to your short questions at his “Ask Pat” podcast.  You can also assess your idea (and develop your products) with his advice in his recent book “Will It Fly?” and a new online course “Smart From Scratch”.

Yes, Pat really is that nice.  I’ve met him at several FinCons.   It’s part of his business model to attract customers and clients, of course, but it’s also simply who he already is.  He’s helped thousands of entrepreneurs over the last eight years, and you can learn what’s worked for other entrepreneurs as you build your own business.

Then maybe someday soon you’ll be able to attend the next Sharks and Stripes event in your area!



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Entrepreneur Resources For Veterans
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WHAT I DO: I help you reach financial independence. For free. I retired in 2002 after 20 years in the Navy's submarine force. I wrote "The Military Guide to Financial Independence and Retirement" to share the stories of over 50 other financially independent servicemembers, veterans, and families. All of my writing revenue is donated to military-friendly charities.

  1. Having been retired now 10 years from the active military my take on the current generation of those serving would not be accurate. But having to work with a large cadre of Millennials (ages 25-35) in my bridge career in health care I encounter many commonly held concepts that generation brings to the workplace. 1. That a degree or education alone, means you are ready and have all you need for success in the workplace. 2. That affirmation or acceptance of one’s social/political/social ideas trumps group workplace cohesiveness or effectiveness. 3. “teamwork is OK, but the end of the project or job or task means looking out for #1 and the next project, in or out of that organization or company. 4. In the endless dynamic of “work-life” balance, if you ask me to be on online or ready to respond 24/7 via social media or smartphone, don’t ask me to stay a bit later, and “my” time is my time and no body else business.

    OK. do those traits or work philosophies translate well to risk taking, being your own boss, the pain and sacrifice needed to get an entrepreneurial business off the ground? My guess is no, from the cross section I have seen from civilian educational systems and backgrounds. Which is why most successful entrepreneurs tend to be over age 45 and tend to come from organization that promote certain work related ethics that tend to translate well into being your own boss. Like the military.

    • Thanks, Peter. I’m pretty sure that Generation X and the Baby Boomers had their share of people who behaved that way in their 20s and 30s. The same GenX/Millennial culture produced a crowd of people like author Adam Grant, who wrote “Give And Take”, so perhaps the generational concepts are stereotypes.

      Although I’ve seen the statistics about entrepreneurs in their 40s, they overlook the rise of entrepreneurs (in their 20s and 30s) who have tech and cost advantages that were never available to the older entrepreneurs. As the rise of accelerators and incubators across the nation shows, it’s become easier and cheaper than ever before to start a business. The vast majority of the founders who come through our local accelerators (Blue Startups, XLR8UH, and Energy Excelerator) are in their 20s and 30s.

      I completely agree that the skills learned in the military translate well to being entrepreneurs and startup founders! Creativity, awareness, teamwork, tenacity, and persistence lead to success at all ages…

    Comment? Question? What's on your mind?