Looking for Amusement Funding? Writing your business plan is a key first step.
When Rick Aleman decided to start his food-services company, one of the first places he stopped was the local district office of the Small Business Administration. Guidance from the SBA helped Aleman build Selrico Services Inc. of San Antonio into a company with $60 million in annual revenue and international operations.
The SBA has many resources for anyone ready to explore starting a business, including the important task of writing a business plan. Putting a plan on paper forces you to think through important issues your business will face.
The plan becomes a valuable tool as you set out to raise money or seek technical assistance, and it provides milestones to gauge your success.
The SBA advises that a plan contain details about what the business will do, marketing, financing and management.
The plan should include an executive summary and supporting documents, such as tax returns, personal financial statements and resumes of the principals,copies of any proposed lease or purchase agreement for building space, copies of licenses and other legal documents; and if itâs a franchise, a copy of the franchise agreement.
There are several SBA-related Web sites to help:
SCORE, an SBA resource partner, has business-plan templates (www.score.org/template_gallery.html) that can help you navigate the process and samples of plans and financial statements created by its counselors.
SCORE also has an online workshop (www.va-interactive.com/score) on writing a business plan.
SBA offers many resources online about startup basics, including workshops (www.sba.gov/starting_business/startup/guide.html) and articles that can help you assess whether entrepreneurship is for you.
You don't need a handout, but a helping hand, says Aleman.
What lenders want to see in a loan proposal
After youâve written your business plan, if youâre seeking funding from a bank or other lender, a well-crafted loan proposal is your next step.
A loan proposal must answer:
Who are you?
How much money do you need?
How are you going to repay the loan?
What happens if you canât repay it?
The SBA advises that a loan proposal contain:
A summary. This should be clear, concise, accurate and inviting. Summarize how the loan will be used and repaid.
Top management profiles. You will need resumes, a summary of experience, and the qualifications and credentials for owners and key members of management.
Business description. Include a brief overview of the history and a summary of current activities. Demonstrate that you understand your field. It is also helpful to include letters from suppliers, customers and other business references.
Projections. Include projected income and cash-flow statements for two to three years. Your assumptions should be clearly stated and realistic.
Financial statements. Include business and personal financial statements. Make sure you understand the story that your financial statements tell. (amusement specific financial statements)
Purpose of the loan. Present a detailed statement of how you will use the loan proceeds. Include proceeds of the loan in your cash-flow projections (and the interest in the projected income statement).
SBA loan program details
Amount. When determining the amount, ask, âHow much money do I need, and how much will they lend? and not, Will they lend it?
Repayment plans. In the first package, you will propose the terms you want, but ultimately this will be a point that will be negotiated with the bank.
This information is from www.sba.gov. Read more about loan proposals and other finance topics at www.sba.gov/starting_business.