How To Prepare a Business Plan To Obtain Money
It is almost impossible to obtain a loan or investment capital unless there is a very clear explanation of what you want to do, and how those supplying money will be repaid. Those supplying money not only want you to be successful, they also want to have the opportunity to get their money repaid as promised, plus generate a return on their investment as measured by monetary profit and/or public benefits (e.g. jobs, taxes, community enhancement).
There are usually multiple people that participate in a decision to provide you with money but not all will have the opportunity to personally meet you, thus they must rely upon written information given to them to make a decision. As a result, it is vital that your plan be well written so that it easy to understand, accurate, and complete so that it clearly conveys your opportunities and potential for success. Most lenders and investors have far more requests than they can accomodate and do not have time to waste on incomplete or difficult-to-understand plans. The Ohio Department of Development program guidelines for various programs state that the following business plan information must be included in loan requests.
1. History and description of the business
The federal Small Business Administration suggests that the following information be in a written business plan.
1. Executive summary
Business startups that have little or no history upon which to base forecasts or judge management abilities must expend much effort to explain the market opportunity, industry, and competition. Some lenders require that a non-affiliated third party review such business plan information for accuracy.
At the top and bottom of this page is a link to a chapter (in a PDF format) from a book by Douglas Stemen titled "Steps To Business Success" that provides valuable insights into preparing a business plan. Doug is uniquely qualified to present this information. He was a professional salesperson in computer and telecommunication technologies prior to becoming a full time entrepreneur 1986. He has provided in-depth management consulting to hundreds of businesses, prepared many business plans, obtained millions of dollars from private and private lenders for clients, evaluates loan requests for community loan funds, taught college level finance courses, develops business software, and has undergraduate and graduate degrees in finance and an undergraduate degree in marketing.
Financial Resources For Northwest & West Central Ohio Entrepreneurs