Ashford 2: – Week 1 – Discussion 2
Your initial discussion thread is due on Day 3 (Thursday) and you have until Day 7 (Monday) to respond to your classmates. Your grade will reflect both the quality of your initial post and the depth of your responses.
Over and over again, entrepreneurs make the same mistakes when planning for venture financing. Experienced investors are alert for the pitfalls. Identify three financing pitfalls and what an entrepreneur can do about them. Respond to two of your classmatesâ€™ postings.
Carefully review the Discussion Forum Grading Rubric for the criteria that will be used to evaluate this Discussion Thread.
Ashford 2: – Week 1 – Assignment
To prepare for the examination of financing sources, write a two- to three-page (not including the title and reference pages) Executive Summary for a Business Plan. This process involves the describing the market, describing your capital needs as well as defining and describing your business. This plan should focus on the entrepreneurial idea you identified in BUS 604 (if you have not completed BUS604, please contact your instructor for approval of your entrepreneurial idea). Use the template below to develop your executive summary. You must include a minimum of two scholarly or professional resources to support your summary.
The Executive Summary must include:
Here you will provide some information about your company and its primary objective. This information is designed to give your target audience an idea of the services or products that your company provides. This section should be two to three paragraphs.
- Describe the background of the company. Be sure to address the following questions: What is the companyâ€™s principle objective? Where is the company located? When was it founded?
- Describe the uniqueness of idea: Is the idea an opportunity?
Business/Product or Service
Describe your product or service in greater detail. If multiple products or services are offered, describe them in the order of significance. This section should be one to two paragraphs.
- Explicitly, what products or services does your organization offer?
- What is the order of significance of the products or services?
- What is the product or serviceâ€™s stage (introductory, growth, maturity)?
(Note: If your company is new, it would be introductory; if itâ€™s ongoing but looking to expand, it will be in the growth phase. If your product or service has reached maturity, it indicates market saturation, and you are seeking funds to change or alter your product to remain competitive.)
- What are your future plans to further develop your product or service?
- Protectability of idea: Is a patent needed?
Define and describe your market (i.e. athletic apparel, consulting services, business software, and restaurant equipment). You will need to do research and justify to your perspective investors that your product or service is meeting a need that is currently missing in the industry. You need to establish this justification by describing the gaps in the industry and how your product or service closes those gaps. This section should be your largest section because it requires research; three to nine paragraphs.
- What is the current size of the market?
- How much of the current market size can you capture (i.e. what percent)?
- Does your business have current customers or customers that have expressed interest in your product or service? (This is optional but beneficial if there are customers)
Discuss your financial requirements and plan in this section. You will need to provide a clear description about required finances and how your company plans on using funds. Itâ€™s always best to overestimate by 30% to cover the cost of areas initially missed.
- Financial requirements: Are the financial requirements consistent with the business opportunity and targeted market?
- Funding: Is the idea worthy of external funding; what external funding source are you considering (bootstrapping, angels, venture capital, bank financing, etc.)? How will you use the money?
Carefully review the Grading Rubric for the criteria that will be used to evaluate your assignment.
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