Venture capital funding is often used loosely to define private funding. While it can be argued that private investments usually take the form of equity investment rather than pure debt, what gets overlooked is the detailed planning and structured approach that is essential for a business plan to meet the high standards set by such funders. The team at BPlan Experts.com has worked with a large number of client’s, in supporting them approach venture capital funders. This gives BPlan Experts.com unique insights into understanding the key segments and essential features that make a plan stand out as a winner .
The diagram below gives a schematic view of how BPlanExperts.com will engage with client’s and the outcomes to be delivered against each milestone. To know more about how the engagement process works, click on the diagram. To get an understanding of what a typical business plan of this scale will contain, click on the “View Sample” tab located on this page. It will open a new window, containing a sample business plan. While most business plans are similar in nature, there will be variances based on certain parameters, for example the industry and location of the business, to name a few. Customization of the plan is what will differentiate one from the other.
BPlan Experts.com offers free consulting sessions, where clients can discuss their project and engage with a highly qualified consultant at no cost. Click the Free Consulting Session tab placed on this page, fill in the details and a consultant will contact you. Are you ready to order? Click on the tab called “Order Now” and follow the simple well laid out steps to complete the buying process. BPlan Experts.com assures client’s of its complete commitment and support and will strive hard to ensure that each business plan is well structured, relevant and fit for purpose.
An executive summary gives a snap shot of a business plan. In essence, it is a brief description of the venture along with its key elements. This segment highlight’s the rational of the business, the management team, the industry in which it will operate and a brief financial statement. To get a quick over view of the overall business plan, the executive summary is often considered a good starting point.
The company overview segment is usually dedicated to describing the principle organization along with its vision, mission and objectives for the business. The reasons for setting up the business i.e. market demand, in-house expertise etc, and its phased roll out approach also form part of this segment. A brief description of the founder/management team, their expertise and experience of similar or complimentary activities form part of this overview.
Products & Services
Every business serves a market need, be it through manufacturing of a product or by providing a service to fulfill market demands. This segment defines the exact nature of the business and its related activities, which will be undertaken. Every product and service will be explained and detailed to ensure that there is no ambiguity around what the organization is offerings to its customers.
A business model is a “hands-on” description of how a business runs. It looks at the inputs that help drive a business and outcomes in the form of products or services. Simply put, it demonstrates how an organization creates and delivers value for all its stakeholders. The inputs to a business model include technology, supply chain, partners and collaborators, while outcomes cover products, services, new processes and technology, market capitalization etc.
How does a company run its business, what are its key touch points and how do stakeholders engage with an organization through its products and services. All these issues form part of the operations model. It is a process through which an organization gets its offerings into the market, engages with its customers and gets paid for the product or service delivered . This segment provides an “end to end” view of how the business will operate and its strong correlation with the overall business strategy.
In this segment the overall market is analyzed, where factors like business trends, growth potential, etc are looked into. Typically, the research conducted is done either through secondary sources i.e. via the internet, articles and publications that are available in the public domain or a primary research is conducted. (Secondary research is a standard offering for all business plans. Primary research can be conducted as additional services at an extra cost.) A well researched and analysed business venture gives an investor a clear understanding of the potential market size and scope of the opportunity.
As an additional segment of the overall market research, the industry analysis provides a sharp focus on the core business segment being undertaken. For example, in an internet based e-commerce venture selling consumer electronics, or applications, while growth of on- line users and internet penetration form part of the overall research, demand for specific electronic products or types of applications bought on-line and their market potential will be included in the industry analysis segment.
Identifying key players in a select industry and analyzing their performance is a critical aspect during the planning phase. A competitor is someone to learn from and win against. Getting a clear understanding of the competitive landscape, identifying the leading players, analyzing competitor products and service delivery models, provides a strong learning platform for an organization while formalizing its own strategy. As a dynamic part of the business plan, this segment consolidates all of the above information in a text or tabular format.
This segment looks at ways of analyzing an organizations potential of being profitability, efficient and effective. Based on the concept of market effectiveness, it provides a qualitative assumption to an organization and helps to identify where the balance of power lies in the industry. The analysis includes both the supply side and demand side of a business and looks at the distinctive market forces that can impact the sustainability of a business.
Strengths, Weakness, Opportunities and Threats, also known as SWOT analysis helps a business understand its position in the market place and devise strategies to increase market share. In building a SWOT analysis, both internal and external issues need to be factored. While strengths and weaknesses are internal organizational factors, opportunities and threats are market driven and dependent on the overall environment. Some of the internal factors that a SWOT looks at include organizational culture, team, product, IP, market share and financial capability. The external factors include customers, competitors, regulatory requirements, change in technology etc.
The marketing strategy is a vehicle through which a company’s product or services are made visible to customers. While a marketing strategy does contain models like 4P’s etc, customization based on product or service specifications, demography, segmentation of customers and buying patterns are some of the critical components that are factored in while mapping the overall picture. The ability to demonstrate application of on-line models is as important as using high visibility print media models. Clearly defined activities with measurable outcomes form part of our best practice marketing methodology. Representation with diagrams and charts form part of the deliverables for this segment.
Very often businesses choose to take a phased approach while launching their products and services, or while entering new markets. A big bang approach h is often not the most desirable model, especially for smaller businesses. This segment of the business plan identifies the phased roll out approach and the fundamental thinking behind it for a business. This model is helpful from an investment perspective also, as measuring outcomes against smaller milestones reduces risks and allows for relatively low impact change in direction, should there be a need to do so.
The management structure as the name suggests defines the leadership team of an organization, their roles, responsibilities and hierarchy. External support in the form of consultants, 3rd part suppliers etc., are also mapped through this model. In addition, detailed resumes of the management team form part of an annexure in the business plan.
Milestones & Timelines
Expressed in the form of Gantt charts or other mechanisms, this segment identifies the roll out period and milestones across a project. This could include time lines for activities like project initiation, setting up of infrastructure, marketing roll out, pilot phase and final product launch. However, it is to be noted that this segment is dependent on the business type, industry and maturity phase of the business.
Risks & Mitigations
Every business is exposed to some form of risk, be it financial or market oriented. Risks can be either market generated or internal to the business. Having a well defined strategy helps an organization to identify potential risks, build a mitigation plan and develop their business strategy around it. Analyzing potential risks is critical to business continuity and allows an organization to build internal measures to soften any impact. This segment identifies the potential risks that a business may encounter and recommends mitigation options for them.
Our methodology provides a well defined and detailed financial structure for each business plan. Profit & Loss, Balance Sheets, Cash Flows statements etc, covering a 5 year period are some of the key elements of the financial section. Each business is carefully analyzed and projections made are based on realistic and achievable targets. We place ourselves in the shoes of an investor to ensure that each number is backed by strong fundamentals, that are robust and in line with market trends.