Military Veteran Partners will invest $20 million into seven franchisees of JDog Junk & Hauling, a fast-growing Berwyn-based moving and junk removal company started by and for veterans, MVP said Tuesday.
MVP, a venture capital and investment management firm based in Malvern, launched in January of this year, was founded by Steve Cloetingh and Kevin Traynor, who saw it as a way to invest in businesses employing veterans.
As part of the deal, MVP will lend capital to the seven new franchisees in new markets, and help them invest in training, technology and expansion.
Cloetingh is chief executive of MVP and serves on various boards including as a trustee of Malvern Preparatory School in Malvern. He and his brother sold their wireless insurance company, Signal Holdings, in 2008 for a reported $250 million.
MVP will invest in only the seven JDog franchise owners, simultaneously providing capital and services to these franchisees, and not in JDog, the franchisor, itself.
In line with the MVP's goal of improving veteran employment, their investment will support the hiring of 250 veterans, military spouses, and military family members by the end of 2018.
"By 2020, this number will grow to 5,000 veterans, military spouses, and military family members hired," Cloetingh said.
So far, JDog franchises are the firm's first investment, but "we'll have others," he said.
"JDog represents the perfect case study in how MVP plans to accelerate the growth of veteran-owned businesses along with the entrepreneurial development of their owners," said Traynor, president of MVP, in a statement.
Founded by Jerry Flanagan and his wife, Tracy, JDog Junk Removal began with two Philadelphia-area franchises in 2012 and has grown to more than 200 active franchises nationwide, Flanagan said.
"Steve Cloetingh was an original investor in our franchise company," Flanagan said.
That was a personal investment by Cloetingh in 2014, separate from the new $20 million investment, which Cloetingh called "a brand new model of investing."
JDog has signed an additional 350 territory agreements with new franchisees, and "there's still 700 additional territories we've identified around the country," Flanagan said.
JDog also recently launched a new price model for smaller markets, a $10,000 franchise fee for markets under 50,000 people, $20,000 fees for markets up to 100,000 people, and the current franchisee price of $35,000 for markets of more than 100,000.
"We created the smaller price models because it works well for people who want extra income. We also partner with V.A. hospitals to help mom-and-pop franchisees to hire veterans," he said.