Our company has expanded and we need a new good business plan that would be accepted by larger financing organizations. What should the format look like and what information should be included?
Business plans come in all different formats and levels of detail depending on how they are to be used. Those that are for internal management purpose may reflect greater or lesser detail than one to be used for securing a bank line of credit or to be included in equity Private Placement Memorandums. Here are some suggestions that will get you started; to help even more, I have a Business Plan Template that you can download for free at www.collaborationhq.com/papers, I hope you will take advantage of this offer.
Key segments of the Business Plan should include the following;
1. Executive Summary-one or two pages summarizing the main points of the more detail plan.
2. Table of contents- if the plan is more than 10-15 pages.
3. Business description-describes key business operating strategies and tactics (e.g. markets, competition, products/services, marketing plan, etc.).
4. Company description-describes the company and its history (e.g. background, organizational structure, on-going business activities, leadership and management, etc.).
5. Financial overview- providing numerical financial strategies and data in a summarized form over the business planning horizon chosen (examples included in the template).
6. Exit strategy-description of what goals or approaches are considered a means for the investor/owner stakeholders to receive a return on their investment.
7. Appendices- other discussions or details that support the other areas included in a more summarized level.
An added benefit of preparing a business plan is that it may cause you to explore certain aspects of your company or business that you have not addressed in the past. This review may provide opportunity for greater clarity and possibly show areas where performance can be improved.
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