George Cohon, renowned businessman and founder of...
How often have you thumbed through a franchise magazine or online directory and noticed a franchise opportunity advertisement, and felt you'd really like to get in on that...if only you had the money? If you're like most who are seeking greater opportunity and wealth, this probably happens with you more often than you care to admit, except perhaps in strictly private conversations.
When the average person sees one of these opportunities, or comes up with a similar idea of his own, the problems of start-up capital may seem formidable. But in reality, they may not be. In fact, just about anyone with a good credit record and an 'insider's sense of business' can get the capital he or she needs, whenever it's needed. The secret is in knowing how to put together a proper proposal, and to present it to the right per son. These are the 'how-to' instructions we're going to give you in this report.
The first thing you're going to need is a complete business plan. This is a complete and detailed description of exactly how you intend to operate the proposed business. Your business plan should detail precisely the product or products you plan to sell; how you're going to produce or manufacture the product; your costs (inventory costs if you're purchasing them from a supplier); who is going to sell those products for you; how they're going to be sold; the attendant costs; when you expect to recoup your initial investment; your plans for growth or expansion; and the total dollar amount you're going to need to make it all work according to your plan. Your business plan must be detailed - complete with projected income and expense figures - through at least the first three years of business.
Now, assuming you have your business plan all worked out, put together and ready for presentation with your request for capital, let's talk about your capitalization proposal.
First, keep in mind that whenever you ask somebody for money, whether it's for a small personal loan or a large amount of money to finance a business, you're involved in a selling situation. You have to prepare a "sales presentation" just as if you were getting ready to sell an automobile or refrigerator. Within this sales presentation you must have all the facts and figures; you must anticipate the questions and the possible objections of the prospective lender with answers or explanations; and you must "package" it as impressively as you would yourself for an audience with the president of IBM or General Motors.
The more money you ask for, the more "in-the-know" will be the people you want to borrow from, and so the more detailed and organized your proposal must be, this shouldn't cause you too much worry however, because you can hire a CGA to help you put it together properly, once you've got the facts and have a business plan he can work from.
Look at it this way: The more money you request for your business, the more your lenders or prospective investors are going to want to know about you, what you are planning, and your business. They want to be impressed with the fact that you've done your homework; they want to see that you've researched everything and documented your facts and figures; they want to be assured by your presentation that investing in your business will make money for them. It's just that simple at the bottom line. Unless you can instill confidence in them with your business plan and loan or investment proposal, they're just not going to give much positive thought to your request for capitalization.