James Reese served in the U.S. Army for 25 years. His time was spent serving in Delta Force, the legendary elite special operations force. During his time in service, he was a troop commander and operations officer. He retired as a Lt. Colonel in 2007. During his service, he became a decorated combat leader.
While on his last rotation in the military, James Reese and another soldier came up with the idea of establishing a company. This would come to be known as TigerSwan. A big problem, though, was that they didn’t have any outside capital to get a company up and running. However, they soon found out they qualified for the Service-Disabled Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB) plan. The U.S. government sets aside money for contracts that are awarded to SDVOSB.
To qualify for this plan, the majority of a company needs to be controlled by a disabled veteran. Since James Reese is 80% disabled from his time serving, TigerSwan qualifies as an SDVOSB. He said his motivation in starting TigerSwan was to put veterans and others to work in a way that made the world a better place.
TigerSwan is a company that provides security consulting services, operational risk management, and other services to the military, corporations, law enforcement, and individuals. Based in Apex, North Carolina, it operates globally on behalf of customers in the United States. Founded in 2008, it now has over 300 employees.
When TigerSwan was awarded its first contract with the Department of Defense, James Reese reinvested the profits in it to build the company and hire more people. He says the operational side of TigerSwan is easier for him to lead since it operates similarly to how the military does. As the chief executive officer, he also needs to deal with the business side of TigerSwan. He says that is more difficult but he has a good team of civilians that he trusts to do their jobs. When hiring and expanding as the chief executive officer, he has to take into account budgets and human capital unlike when he was in the military and someone else handled those things.
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