highly recommend that all ten of the following sections be included
in your detailed business plan. Failure to address any given section
may lead to investor disqualification for funding.
Executive Summary: This
two page summary of your business plan may be all that is ever
read by an investor. Therefore it is critical that it captures
the reader's interest by being persuasive, concise and well written.
You should address briefly all of the following sections of the
business plan, but especially, why you are convinced that your
concept is uniquely positioned to succeed.
Present relevant industry and target market data and trends.
Show the market size and growth potential for YOUR business. For
example, if you are selling peanuts, your market is not total
global food consumption, but rather snack foods in your region.
Identify the opportunities for your business's dominance of the
market via barriers of entry.
List the key competitors and their market share. Analyze the
strengths and weaknesses of the market leaders. State how your
business is poised for winning versus the competition.
or Service: Show how your product addresses the customers'
needs. Advise how your product is differentiated from the competition's
product. Provide a product development history and future plans.
and Sales: Cover all aspects of marketing: pricing,
distribution and promotion. Present the key communication messages
to potential customers. Provide a marketing budget and sales plan.
Team: For all key members of the management team, prepare
concise summary of their achievements and expected contribution
to the business. Show how they will work together. Identify any
System and Organization: Provide a description of the
business process for each product or service. Show your organization
chart, with headcount numbers. Identify your board of directors
and advisors. State your strategic alliances and their terms.
Schedule: Determine a realistic schedule for implementation.
Identify key milestones.
and Risks: Outline any extraordinary opportunities
for growth, and potential risks to your business model.
Provide realistic assumptions for revenues, cost and expenses.
Prepare forecasted income statements, balance sheet and cash flows
for three to five years. Identify capital structure, funding requirements
and exit strategies. You may wish to consult with an accounting
or financial consultant for the preparation of the statements.