ORANGE, Calif.–Home Franchise Concepts (HFC), one of the largest business franchisors in the U.S., has transformed the life of a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and family from Charlotte on Veterans Day with the gift of a business package valued at up to $300,000.
Sohel Gilani, a 15-year U.S. Marine and former Marine Staff Sergeant, was proclaimed the winner of the HFC “There’s No Place Like Home Veteran Partnership and Giveaway” during Nov. 11 ceremonies at HFC offices in Orange, Calif.
HFC’s three, direct-to-consumer brands in the home-related goods and services space, Budget Blinds®, Tailored Living® and Concrete Craft®, are consistently rated at the top of their categories and supported by almost 1,400 franchisees in the U.S., Canada and Mexico.
One of four finalists in the year-long program, Gilani was presented with a Concrete Craft franchise territory, extensive business-development training and up to $80,000 in first-year operating capital by Shirin Behzadi, CEO of Home Franchise Concepts. He was one of multiple veterans nominated by existing HFC franchisees to receive the award.
“On behalf of everyone at Home Franchise Concepts, I was beyond honored to proclaim Sohel as the next Concrete Craft franchisee,” explained Behzadi. “He joins a proud family of Budget Blinds, Tailored Living and Concrete Craft franchise owners who have served honorably in the U.S. and Canadian military. Our hope is that this presentation will inspire other veterans to a new beginning after deployment.”
Gilani enlisted as an U.S. Marine Corps Single Channel Communications Operator in 2000, was promoted to Lance Corporal and deployed to Kuwait, Iraq and Afghanistan. That service led to a stint with the Office of Legislative Affairs (OLA) at the Pentagon and promotion to rank of Staff Sergeant in 2011, where he mentored other U.S. Marines.
After a medical discharge in 2015, Gilani qualified as a Charlotte Police Trainee but was prevented from continuing because of his medical condition. He is now an operations manager at Concrete Craft of Charlotte in Waxhaw, N.C.
Saturday’s presentation follows years of HFC support for veteran programs including Homes for Our Troops, Wounded Warriors Canada, Military Makeover, NBC’s George to the Rescue and the HFC Million Dollar Franchise Event which awarded $1 million in franchise discounts to former servicemen and women.
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