Michigan-based Hungry Howie's Pizza, which was named a 2012 "Military Friendly Franchise" by G.I. Jobs Magazine, is actively targeting veterans for franchising opportunities.

The company recently signed two new veteran franchisees and has announced new initiatives to attract additional military veterans to the business.

Mark Ward, of San Antonio, Texas, plans to open his first Hungry Howie's Pizza in early 2013. He comes to the company after 27 years in the Air Force. He said his military service was excellent preparation for restaurant franchise ownership.

"Both systems utilize operations manuals and written procedures. Hungry Howie's developed a tried-and-true business strategy that works well, and that appealed to me," Ward said. "Managing groups of that size teaches you to interact with a wide variety of people who have different learning styles."

Alpharetta, Ga., franchisee Brian Brown also served in the Air Force. He became a Hungry Howie's franchisee through VetFran, the International Franchise Association's program that encourages military veterans to become business owners. In addition to his military background, Brown also has experience in the restaurant industry, having managed several brands including Little Caesars Pizza and Wendy's.

"The corporate office provides franchisees with a lot of support and training in the startup process and beyond, and they offer great benefits for military veterans," Brown said. "In addition, my family loves Hungry Howie's. We order it whenever we visit family back home in Michigan so it's an unbeatable business opportunity."

Hungry Howie's is offering a special $10,000 discount to veterans — 50 percent-off the initial franchise fee.

"We have a strong veteran presence at Hungry Howie's Pizza," said Brian Ognian, vice president of franchise development. "In addition to our two veteran franchisees, one of our directors is also a veteran of the National Guard. Veterans make excellent franchise owners and we are always looking to add them to our system. Offering these incentives is a great way to entice the entrepreneurial-minded veterans we are looking for."

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