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

Private investor just starting out. Looking for opportunities within the film/enterntainment industries.

$0 to $50,000

United States > Georgia

Angel Investor with an extensive IT Management background in the financial market, currently investing in ConstruTechs, PharmaTechs and consulting services. Looking for Innovative solutions and investment opportunities in other areas like AgriTech, or any other innovative business using Technology.

$25,000 to $50,000

United States > Georgia

I am a 28 year old third year law student in Athens, Georgia. I will be a corporate lawyer in Atlanta in the coming months. Prior to law school I worked in IT staffing for three years. In law school, I've focused on corporate and real estate law. My summer jobs gave me the opportunity to work on such deals in law firms. Currently invested long in the stock market. I am an individual investor.

$1 to $50,000

United States > Georgia

Tech and business savvy resident of Georgia. Currently an online startup coach business owner and corporate accountant. Mostly experienced with the tech industry but quick to learn and build solutions to problems. I have a Masters & Bachelors in Accounting. I have invested in public companies i.e. stock market as well as private equity in myown online company. I can add value through social networking, revenue improvements, consulting, accounting, swot analysis, and business growth. Preference for silent investment but open to advisory depending on the investment amount. I am an individual investor.

$10,000 to $100,000

United States > Georgia

A trust with assets in excess of $5 million, income exceeding $200,000 in each of the two most recent years or joint income with a spouse exceeding $300,000 for those years. Looking for investment opportunities.

$50,000 to $100,000

United States > Georgia

I'm completely new at this and just wanted to see what kind of opportunities there are for investment. I like the idea of helping someone else while making a small profit in return.

$10 to $20,000

United States > Georgia

I attended Ashford University for BA - Entrepreneurship. I have over 20 years in sales and management as a Sales Manager, Director of Business Development, VP of Strategic Alliances, real estate agent, and now an Investor. I'm the Chairman, CEO, and President of a Holdings company.

$50,000 to $150,000

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, Florida, North Carolina, South 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: $200,000 to $50,000,000. 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 $50,000,000