|By PR Newswire||
|August 18, 2014 05:30 AM EDT||
NEW YORK, Aug. 18, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- American veterans have a strong entrepreneurial spirit, and according to a study released by the SBA Office of Advocacy titled "Entrepreneurship and Business Ownership in the Veteran Population," 22 percent of veterans are either purchasing or starting a new business, or considering purchasing or starting one. Soupman, Inc. (Public Trading Symbol: SOUP), the parent company of the best-tasting soup brand in the world, The Original Soupman®, through its veteran program, is committed to supporting veterans in their pursuit of entrepreneurship, and announces today its first veteran Soupmobile™ franchisee, Sergeant Daniel Gilyeat from Kansas City, Kan.
"For many veterans, the return home from service is not an easy transition, leading many of these young men and women to seek an entrepreneurial opportunity that is fulfilling, allows them to set their own schedule and enables them to take care of their family," explains Lloyd Sugarman, CEO of The Original Soupman. "Our Soupmobile franchise allows veterans to do just that with a full corporate support team assisting with menu development, operations, marketing and more. Sergeant Dan is a true American hero and we look forward to helping him bring our one-of-a-kind soups and sandwiches to Kansas City."
The Original Soupman's Soupmobile Franchise Veteran Program offers a 10 percent discount to veterans and assists with financing programs for the franchisee. The plans are to service the community and military bases in the local market where the veteran lives.
Sergeant Dan the Soupman
Sergeant Daniel Gilyeat's story is one of heroism and bravery. After two tours in Iraq, Gilyeat was wounded on July 3, 2005, losing his left leg to an IED above the knee when his vehicle struck an anti-tank mine. After surviving overwhelming odds, Gilyeat learned to walk again and moved to Kansas City, Kansas, where he began to support other wounded veterans. His inspiring story was featured in a 2008 episode of Extreme Makeover Home Edition. In 2014, Sergeant Gilyeat was introduced to The Original Soupman brand and team. After tasting the soup and meeting the corporate team, he decided that owning his own Soupmobile would allow him to support his dream of owning his own business, as well as continue his passion for helping veterans.
"After visiting with The Original Soupman team earlier this year in New York City, I immediately felt the passion the organization had for assisting veterans, such as myself, and knew that it was the perfect franchise for me and my wife, Ana, to bring to Kansas City," says Sergeant Daniel Gilyeat. "The Soupmobile trucks have a low cost of entry, food that sells itself and provides access to the full Original Soupman support team. I look forward to owning my own Soupmobile, as well as continuing to empower and inspire other veterans by employing them to help run the business."
Food Industry Serving Heroes: FISH
The Original Soupman is dedicated to assisting veterans with their needs, whether it is through business ownership or through helping them to achieve physical or educational assistance. As such, the organization has partnered with Food Industry Serving Heroes (FISH), a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization focused on making a positive impact on the lives of troops, veterans and their families. As part of The Soupmobile Veteran Program, for each veteran franchisee that signs a development agreement with the brand, a percentage of the franchise fee will go directly to FISH and its programs, including health, guidance, recognition and support. This partnership is intended to enable FISH to support more veterans across the country.
"For many veterans we work with, finding a job can be difficult when they leave the military, which can often cause hopelessness, directly affecting most veterans' emotional and physical healing," says Paul Chapa, the founder of FISH. "By partnering with The Original Soupman, we are able to increase our efforts and support more veterans as they return from active duty. With veterans' work ethic, attitude and structure, we believe the food industry is ideal for veterans looking for their next career."
Soupmobiles Hit The Road
The Original Soupman announced All-Star Shaquille O'Neal and Marcus Crawford earlier this year as joint venture partners of the Soupmobile franchising program, with plans to have 100 trucks on the road by 2017. "As a franchisee, I can say firsthand that The Original Soupman's Soupmobiles are ideal for those seeking a growing, unique and quality franchise opportunity in their local marketplace, with low capital investment, recognized brand and an operating system that enables you to service $2,000 or more in sales per day in a mobile format," adds Marcus Crawford.
About Soupman, Inc.:
In 1984, The Original Soupman opened its doors at 55th Street & 8th Avenue in Manhattan. The tiny storefront quickly became a worldwide destination. Rated number 1 by Zagat and praised by the New York Times as "Art, not Soup", it set the standard for innovation and excellence long before the famous Seinfeld episode made it a cultural icon. The Company sells The Original Soupman soups in Tetra Pak cartons to grocery stores across America in the soup aisle next to Campbell's and Progresso. It also sells soup to its franchised restaurants and the New York City public school system. Shaquille O'Neal serves as an advisor to, and equity partner in the Company, as does Mr. October, Reggie Jackson and Emmy® and Golden Globe® nominated and Tony Award® winning actor Jason Alexander. Tim Gannon, the co-founder of Outback Steakhouse, is the Soupman Culinary and Business Director and Chairman of the Board of Directors. Soupman, Inc., parent company of The Original Soupman, Inc., is a fully reporting public company trading under the symbol SOUP. For additional information, visit www.originalsoupman.com, follow us on Twitter @OriginalSoupman and "Like" us on Facebook.
Safe Harbor Statement:
This press release may contain forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. The forward-looking statements are based on current expectations, estimates and projections made by management. The Company intends for the forward-looking statements to be covered by the safe harbor provisions for forward-looking statements. Words such as "anticipates," "expects," "intends," "plans," "believes," "seeks," "estimates," or variations of such words are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements contained in this press release include statements regarding our veterans program, our partnership with FISH to support more veterans across the country and the plans to have 100 trucks on the road by 2017. All forward-looking statements in this press release are made as of the date of this press release, and the Company assumes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements other than as required by law. The forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those set forth or implied by any forward-looking statements such as our ability to attract veterans as franchisees, sell Soupmobile franchises or otherwise to implement our marketing plan, including raise necessary capital, and the risk factors discussed in the Business and Management's Discussion and Analysis sections in our Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, Annual Reports on Form 10-K and Current Reports on Form 8-K. Copies of these filings are available at www.originalsoupman.com
SOURCE The Original Soupman
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