You are an entrepreneur that dreams big. You are as sharp as a tack when it comes to business, and as a boss, you know you MUST find a way to get hold of sufficient funding for your business. You were fascinated by other successful entrepreneurs when you pay attention to their tips on how to achieve success in various seminars you have attended over the years. You know what you need to accelerate your business to the next level: a solid business FUNDING. You started paying attention to various funding alternatives and you envisioned the success of getting all the funding you need. You know your estimated profits; so all you need to know now is just how much you need, i.e. your new capital, right? You need more blood to keep pumping your business’ expansion. You are positive, you can do this, you can easily get all that money you need to accelerate your business!
Your determination is on fire. You are willing to do all you need, spend whatever money you have, just to be able to get the funds from investors for your business. So you attended a course which put a hole in your pocket, to learn to write a business plan that will be used to pitch to investors. You thought this would be the answer to your problems, the money you spent on the course would be all worth it; but you were wrong. It was nothing but a waste. The Trainer of the course did not have clear ideas about your business. So the business plan writing knowledge you have learnt was merely general in nature. It was not business-specific. You hired a consultant to do the business plan, the writing plan was too thick, too thick that even yourself wouldn’t want to spend time going through it page by page. If that is the case, imagine being in the investors’ position? They might have thousands of business plans to go through in a day! Would they want to read YOUR business plan if it is that thick?
Of course, being loved by investors sounds like something so easy to do when you are just doing your pitch in verbal form. However, investors do not only listen the way you pitch – they actually pay close attention to what is written on paper! So, you must not be able to convince them not only through your presentation, but you must have some form of written proof that outlines your entire plans and processes to convince them even better! Believe me, writing a business plan may sound like such a tricky thing to do, but there is actually a specific formula to that which could reduce your burden more than you can ever imagine.
Vincent is an insurance agent who owned an agency with nine downlines. He has a strong will to learn, especially when it comes to expanding his business. Vincent wanted to make his business grow even bigger with faster acceleration within a short span of time. He knew it was high time for him to get new sources of funding so that he could get rid of the name tag of the insurance reseller. So, being a, a million dollar round table winner, Vincent decided to participate in a master class to learn more about equity funding. The class was held for a duration of four days. As the four days have ended, Vincent learnt that funding is such a simple process. It was so easy that he could even use the knowledge to teach his client about it.
While teaching others is fairly easy and his client successfully did it, Vincent started to wonder how to integrate this knowledge into his business. So he started studying what he had learnt even further. While being busy in this process, one of the CFO’s was in the same course as Vincent has connected to him. They communicated ideas, exchanged opinions, and Vincent learnt a golden knowledge from this exchange – the CFO taught Vincent how he could use the knowledge to structure a well-defined business plan and simpler steps for his business to obtain all the funding he needed!
Remember when I said, there is a formula to writing a good business plan, which makes things much simpler for you? Say hello to your new best friend, the Cash FundedOn™. Use this formula and your business would definitely gain the competitive advantage of appearing more attractive in the eyes of investors! This formula consists of three main components: Company, Figures, and Offer; all of which are explained as follows:
Then, tell them your business background, such as what you do or even what makes you unique. Remember, try to stand out as much as possible.
This will let the investors know more about your business. Tell them your vision, mission, values, aspirations to achieve your goals, and what are your product and services. You want investors to know you have a road all mapped out, to enhance their confidence in investing in your business.
Star Story Solution
Now, tell the investors something about the founder. The specific person, his story, his entire journey that led him towards the establishment of the business. In this case, it is you. Make yourself shine!
Investors want to know about your Chief-Suit Management Team, the backbone of your business – the Board of Advisors, Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Chief Operating Officer (COO), Chief Financial Officer (CFO), Chief Marketing Officer (CMO), Chief Legal Officer (CLO), Chief Technology Officer (CTO), Chief Sales Officer (CSO), etc. Introduce these respective individuals as short and sweet as possible.
Tell your investors about your company structure, the holding company, its subsidiaries, the aspirations you have in the future for franchising, licensing, or any joint-venture plans. This is a Finest Business Model, which will be elaborated more in Blog 13.2.
Show your investors you have done your research by analysing its Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats to help you in your business planning. This is further explained in Having an Analytic View of Your Profit with SWOT.
Have in place a Business Model Canvas, a plan in which your business intends to make money. It gives investors an idea on how you are planning to create value for your company, and in return, whether they could benefit from this as well. The BMC is explained in The Business Model Canvas: Attracting SMART Investors and Creating Value for Your Business.
The revenue forecast is an estimation of your revenues over a period of time, in this case, a 3-year revenue forecast is sufficient. You should also show your expenses estimates to have a picture of your business’ net profits.
If your business has a dividend policy, let your investors know. This is the percentage of profit that will be distributed to the shareholders. At the end of the day, your goal is not only to make your business grow and make good money, but to also benefit the shareholders by maximising their wealth.
Usage of fund
Investors are interested in knowing what your funds will be used for. Let them know, in categories, where the money will be invested.
The Funding Roadmap gives investors an idea of which direction your business is heading towards financially, and what approaches you will be taking to achieve this financial target. This could be prepared using the Cash FundedOn™ formula for FRM, explained in my book NEXT LEVEL BOSS – THE SECRETS.
The Term Sheet is a form of letter of intent, where the specifications or terms and conditions to the agreement will be clearly stated out. Let your investors know the percentage of equity you are ready to offer, how much venture debt you require, and even what the investor could benefit from investing in you. It is, however, non-binding and subject to changes if investors require you to do so.
The last and also the most important step to get the attention of your investors – give them a winning summary! Keep it short but solid but focusing on seven key points. This is where you remind investors of what you said and keep them in close consideration of taking the investment with you.
With all of the above points written in a maximum of one page each, your business plan shall have a total of 15 pages. Not too long, not too short, but still, packed with all the necessary information for investors. You could even just use this for your pitching session; where a pitching session is usually 15 minutes, so one minute per page – and there you have it, 15 solid minutes!
With every component understood, now you shall learn how to execute the process of constructing your business plan using the Cash FundedOn™ formula. All you need to do is just download the template, and fill it up accordingly! Five key questions will be the guideline for you in filling up this template: Why, Who, What, How much, and How we do. It is important to be able to express your business in written form because this will be used as a reference by investors once your pitch is over.
WHY you do it?
You are answering this question in relation to your company History.
Background Story : Start with ‘Why’ or a joke to hook the investors.
WWU : Who are you? What do you do? What is your unique selling point?
V2MAP : Vision – What do you dream of becoming?
Mission – What thing you must do before you die?
Value – What are your two core values?
Aspiration – What is your goal?
Product – What are your product and services?
WHO are you?
You are letting investors know your company Profile.
Star Story Solution : Who is the founder’s STAR? The reluctant hero.
What is the founder’s STORY? The journey of the hero.
What is the founder’s SOLUTION? The offer to change the world.
CMT : Who makes up the Chief-Suit Management Team?
– Board of Advisors
– CEO, COO, CFO, CMO, CLO, CTO, CSO
WHAT you do?
You explain to investors more about your Business.
Company Structure: The Finest Business Model.What are your future plans for franchising? Licensing? Joint venture?
BMC : The Business Model Canvas. Provide 3 key points for each section:
– Key Partner
– Key Activities
– Key Resources
– Cost Structure
– Value Proposition
– Customer Relationship
– Customer Segment
– Revenue Stream
SWOT analysis : S – What is the STRENGTH and unfair advantage that you have?
W – What is the existing WEAKNESS and challenges you face?
O – What is your benefit and OPPORTUNITIES that you could grab?
T – What is the risk or THREAT that may cause you to fail?
HOW MUCH you do for?
The Financial breakdown of your company. Numbers, numbers, numbers.
Revenue forecast : Estimate a 5-year revenue, expenses, and net profit generated by your business. By this, you shall know your target cash inflows and outflows.
Dividend policy : How much percentage will you redistribute to your shareholders for three years? This however, may not be applicable in all companies. You may not have a dividend policy when your company’s policy is to reinvest the profits as working capital.
Usage of fund : After funding, how much money will be used to fund your business, and what are they? Give four to five categories on where the money will be used.
FRM : The Funding Roadmap. How much is the valuation of your company, and roadmap of IPO plans or exit model?
HOW do YOU DO it?
Let investors know your Plan, and what you have to offer them in return for their investment!
Term Sheet : What is the percentage of equity you are offering investors?
Any venture debts needed?
What is it in for Investors, that makes investing in you worth it compared to others?
Winning summary : WIN the investors’ hearts! Give a recap of seven key points of the above. Keep it clear and concise!
Having your doubts on the Cash FundedOn™ in preparing your business plan? This method has actually been tested by me with my clients, and yes – it has been proven to be successful! My clients were able to raise funds to help their business grow. So, do not hesitate and there is no harm in trying, just download the template here, and get yourself working on your information-packed business plan! You will be one step closer to getting your dream funding!
Another piece of advice, is for you to use METAPHORS, not only in your presentation, but also in the writing of your business plan. What is a metaphor? Well, it is a figure of speech that makes your explanation even better. It gives your audience a clearer depiction of what you are trying to say. Trust me, people, especially your investors, LOVE stories – they get attracted to it, they get influenced by it, and eventually, their hearts are won by it. I have clients who used metaphors a lot in their presentation and business plan, and guess what? They too, successfully raised funds!
Before we wrap things up, let’s not forget about Vincent. What happened to him? Did he manage to get what he wanted? Vincent did an extensive brainstorming process for one whole week, and he managed to come up with a model for his insurance company using the Cash FundedOn™ formula. He pitched it to investors, he won their hearts, and he was roaring with success! He got the funds he needed, he made his business grow, he got new customers, and subsequently generated more profit! With all the knowledge he has, Vincent became an Insurance cum Education Entrepreneur. He bundles insurance products with financial planning courses to DEEPEN his business model and gain new investors. With all the training, Insurance and investment product commission, and business advisory Vincent has, his company successfully generated more and more profit over the years. He is now highly-skilled in preparing business models which as a result, accelerated his business.