Georgia Investment Network

Business Plan Tips

What Investors Are Looking For In A Plan

Investors, whether angels or VC's, are looking for the same things when reading a business plan. They want to know how big the opportunity is, whether this is the right team to exploit the opportunity, who the competition is, what the risks are, and why they can expect this team to implement successfully. Your job in writing the business plan is to address these questions convincingly and clearly.

Emphasize Your Real Strengths

Highlight what your team brings to the table. If your business hinges on a particular competency (for example, understanding the procurement process), your plan will be more persuasive if one of your team members knows something about it and that is brought out in your plan. Rather than including generic resumes of team members, tailor the resumes to draw out the experience each member has that will make him or her a valuable contributor.

Get To The Point And Make It Clear And Comprehensive

Investors see many business plans. A 20-page plan which clearly lays out your business is far more likely to be read than a 100 page plan. Today, some entrepreneurs are using a 15 slide Powerpoint presentation. If your text is short and punchy, you won't need to repeat yourself, because the reader won't be bogged down keeping ten chapters in their head. Reading the same thing over and over, even if it's in different words, can get really tiring. The more you use brevity and give each concept a single home in your document, the more people will want to read it.

Write In Plain English

If you can't explain your idea in English, either you don't understand what you're talking about (What is a transaction enabled atomic journaling database server, anyway?) or you haven't simplified the idea enough. Think, revise, and try again.

Get Rid Of The Hype

Yes, we know you will be the "premier insert product category here of the Internet, achieving 99% market penetration with 60% customer retention in 3 months". Your product will reach "new heights in customer experience through the use of personalization and one-to-one profiling and customization". It will be "user friendly" because you will be creating a truly "ecstatic customer experience". It is a "quantum leap forward" in the marketplace for product category here. Um, yeah. Believe me, we've read it before. About a dozen times today, in fact. (And by the way, the phrase "quantum leap" really doesn't mean anything.) Stick to a tight, simple explanation of your idea. Convince your reader you'll be the best because your idea is the best, not because you can string a dozen buzzwords together.

Use Quantifiable Information

In each section, back up your assertions with solid facts. Even if you are a new venture and cannot give specific figures on the performance of your business, quote figures for the industry or your competitors. These real figures carry more weight than your assumed projections and give more reality to your plan.

Choose A Huge Market

Especially in the internet world, investors are looking more at the market than at the detailed specifics of your financials. Choose a market that is big enough to be an obvious good opportunity. A business which targets teenage girls who listen to music and has a reasonable chance of capturing 90% of the girls that are online is a huge opportunity. A business which targets net-savvy SAAB mechanics who need prosthetic limbs is not.

Georgia Investors

United States > Georgia

Individual Investor. 15+ years in IT industry. Looking to build out additional investments. Level of involvement can vary based on investment/industry.

$5,000 to $200,000

United States > Georgia

We are a Premier Private Lender for Construction and Development in the Southeast Locally-based, 1st lien, direct lender for projects in Georgia, North Carolina, and Tennessee We are an all cash real estate lending fund specializing in new construction, development, and bridge financing. Project types include single family (spec & custom), multifamily, commercial, mixed-use, subdivisions, townhomes, and land. Typical Lending Criteria: Loan Size: $100,000 to $2,500,000. Loan-to-cost (LTC): No requirement. Loan-to-value (LTV): Up to 65%. Term: 3 to 18 months, with renewal option Prepayment penalty: none Commitment: 48 hours after receipt of underwriting package. Approval and Funding: 5 days after commitment. Construction Draws: Dedicated Draw Team, construction draw funds wired within 24 hours of inspection.

$100,000 to $2,500,000

United States > Georgia

Private investor that grew up in the Atlanta area graduating from both UGA and UVA (finance and accounting). I am currently an owner in an accounting firm assisting fast growing companies with their processes and procedures oftentimes in preparation for an IPO. Consult with owners as to the appropriate accounting/finance structure and review business models that will make their company successful. In addition, I work with many small businesses to assist through growth pains which I have seen in the ten employee level as infrastructure is often needed and the business owner doesn't know how to scale. Looking for an investment where I can actively provide guidance if needed or working capital to support the current business plan. Expertise in service, technology and distribution industries. I would act as a passive investor but strengths would relate primarily to CFO type guidance.

$100,000 to $500,000

United States > Georgia

I am 53 years old and my investment partner is 56 years old. Both of us are married and I am located in Atlanta, Ga. My partner lives near Jacksonville, Fl. and comes to Atlanta on business once every 5 weeks. I have a masters degree and my partner graduated from Georgia Tech and currently runs a real estate company that buys and sells houses, issues hard money loans while I have invested in Stocks and Internet companies. Between us we bring over 40 years experience in growing small businesses into muli Million Dollar revenue companies. We are willing to act as an advisor or silent equity partner. If we are involved and the business grows we can obtain additional capital so that growth will not be slowed due to lack of funds. Once we invest, we'll be a phone call away if there's a situation you need to talk through.

$30,000 to $500,000

United States > Georgia

I am a private investor looking for the right opportunity for passive income outside of my current ventures. I have funded startups in the technology, entertainment, and telecom industries. I also have 10 years of executive experience in telecommunications industry.

$50,000 to $1,000,000

United States > Georgia

Supply chain consultant with masters and bachelors in supply chain management. Previous business experience in a variety of industries

$1,000 to $30,000

United States > Georgia

We are a 20 year old company that assists small businesses with accounts receivables financing. We are also a real estate firm that buys non-performing mortgages where the homeowner wishes to stay in their home whereby we will seek to buy the mortgage and provide new financing for the homeowner. We also seek to purchase performing mortgage notes from private sellers.

$50,000 to $50,000,000

United States > Georgia

In short words, I live in Atlanta, GA. I'm a business man. I'm also an individual investor.

$50,000 to $500,000