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How To Write A Great Business Plan Berkeley


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How To Write A Great Business Plan Berkeley

  1. 1. How to Write a Great Business Plan Steve Tennant Tennant Consulting
  2. 2. About the Speaker Steve Tennant, Managing Director, Tennant Consulting <ul><li>After PeopleSoft, Steve was VP Business Development at Ninth House Network, a broadband Internet e-learning company; then VP Marketing at Planitax, a startup software-as-a-service application financial software provider, a Tennant Consulting client which he helped to secure venture financing in 2003. </li></ul><ul><li>Past roles include advising over 20 high-tech firms at Technology Ventures Corporation and as a member of the Keiretsu Forum, an angel investor group. </li></ul><ul><li>Steve founded the 2,000-member PeopleSoft Alumni Network and co-chairs the East Bay Innovation Groups' Startups and Venture Capital SIG, a monthly networking and educational forum for high-tech entrepreneurs. </li></ul><ul><li>Mr. Tennant graduated with a BBA with high distinction from the University of Michigan Business School in Ann Arbor, Michigan and lives with his family in Orinda, California. </li></ul><ul><li>Steve publishes a free monthly newsletter with tips and tools for entrepreneurs. To subscribe, visit </li></ul><ul><li>Steve Tennant is a marketing consultant to software and technology firms looking to attract more customers and venture capital. </li></ul><ul><li>Since 2001, Steve Tennant has been managing director of Tennant Consulting, helping software and Internet executives accelerate growth of their businesses through strategy, marketing, alliance, and product management consulting services. </li></ul><ul><li>Steve has over 20 years of software and technology industry experience. He is a former VP of Business Development and director of Product Strategy at PeopleSoft. Prior to that, he was a senior manager at Andersen Consulting (now Accenture). </li></ul>
  3. 3. How to Write a Great Business Plan Steve Tennant Tennant Consulting
  4. 4. Representative Clients <ul><li>Employer tax collection system – State of Michigan </li></ul><ul><li>Project management system </li></ul><ul><li>Professional service billing system </li></ul><ul><li>Government accounting system – Puerto Rico </li></ul><ul><li>Receiving, inventory, shipping system </li></ul><ul><li>Utility billing system </li></ul><ul><li>Member information system </li></ul><ul><li>Disaster recovery system </li></ul><ul><li>AI-based mortgage loan origination system </li></ul><ul><li>Retail banking system </li></ul><ul><li>Bank of the Future solution center </li></ul><ul><li>Portfolio accounting system </li></ul><ul><li>Investment management customer reporting </li></ul>First Nationwide Bank
  5. 5. Experience – As an employee <ul><li>Global accounting enterprise packaged software </li></ul><ul><li>Activity-based accounting software </li></ul><ul><li>Knowledge management software </li></ul><ul><li>Broadband e-learning / management training </li></ul>
  6. 6. Representative Clients <ul><li>Hosted corporate tax software </li></ul><ul><li>Accounting & audit software </li></ul><ul><li>Enterprise pricing software </li></ul><ul><li>RFID supply chain application software solution </li></ul><ul><li>Hosted medical billing software </li></ul><ul><li>Expandable USB hard drive </li></ul><ul><li>IT asset management software </li></ul><ul><li>Building energy analysis software </li></ul><ul><li>Networking skills e-learning </li></ul><ul><li>Data storage security </li></ul><ul><li>Wireless power products for consumer electronics </li></ul><ul><li>Corporate training materials printing software </li></ul><ul><li>Credit and collections software </li></ul><ul><li>Grid computing solutions </li></ul><ul><li>Hosted bio-computing software </li></ul><ul><li>Offshore product management services </li></ul><ul><li>Collaborative software solution </li></ul><ul><li>Global capital markets trading software </li></ul>Rolling Thunder
  7. 7. You Might Be Thinking… <ul><li>How do I write a business plan? </li></ul><ul><li>What do I include? </li></ul><ul><li>How does this process work in the real world? </li></ul><ul><li>What separates “good” from “great”? </li></ul><ul><li>How do I get started? </li></ul><ul><li>Is there any more pepperoni? </li></ul>
  8. 8. An idea to make your plan great
  9. 9. The “Business Concept” Customers’ Really Big Problem Valuable, Differentiated Solution What are Their Needs and Wants? How Do They Solve It Today? How Do They Buy? What Do They Value/Pay? How “Really Big” Is The Problem? How Are We Different? How Do We Deliver Value? What Do We Build/Buy/Partner? How to Balance Speed & Quality? What’s Our Solution?
  10. 10. Your “Investor Toolkit” <ul><li>Executive Summary (of the Business Plan) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>1-3 page standalone Word or PDF document </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Investor Pitch </li></ul><ul><ul><li>10-16 Slide PowerPoint </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Business Plan </li></ul><ul><ul><li>15-40 Page Word or PDF document </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Financial Plan </li></ul><ul><ul><li>5-20 Page Spreadsheet </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>2-3 pages in Business Plan </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>1 Slide in Investor Pitch </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. How This Works Great, send me your business plan & financials I’d like to meet Sum You Advisors Sum Sum Sum Investors Sum Investor Pitch Investor Presentations PPT BP Fin Due Diligence BP Fin Terms Negotiations Funding $ Investor Pitch All Partners Meeting PPT
  12. 12. Now on to the nuts and bolts…
  13. 13. What’s in a business plan? No “right or wrong” – just “complete” and “incomplete” Adjust sequence to tell your story <ul><li>Business Plan </li></ul><ul><li>Sample Table of Contents </li></ul><ul><li>Executive Summary </li></ul><ul><li>Problem/Market Opportunity </li></ul><ul><li>Business Concept & Vision </li></ul><ul><li>Solution </li></ul><ul><li>Competitive Landscape </li></ul><ul><li>Intellectual Property </li></ul><ul><li>Customer Value Proposition </li></ul><ul><li>Revenue Model </li></ul><ul><li>Sales, Marketing & Alliances </li></ul><ul><li>Manufacturing/Operations </li></ul><ul><li>Financials </li></ul><ul><li>Investment/Uses of Funds </li></ul><ul><li>Team </li></ul><ul><li>Team </li></ul><ul><li>Customers </li></ul><ul><li>Solution </li></ul><ul><li>IP </li></ul>Lead with your strength
  14. 14. Executive Summary <ul><li>Used to get investor meetings </li></ul><ul><li>1-3 pages </li></ul><ul><li>Industry, category, stage </li></ul><ul><li>May be required to complete an application </li></ul><ul><li>Include short answers to each of the other sections </li></ul><ul><li>No NDA: Keep jewels close </li></ul><ul><li>Lead with your strength </li></ul><ul><li>Show compelling vision </li></ul><ul><li>Make the story interesting </li></ul><ul><li>Tips </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Draft first, finalize after long business plan is completed </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use to provide “routing information” for VC firms </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Leave investors wanting to learn more </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Used twice: stand-alone email doc and as intro in your longer business plan </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Have other laypeople review & provide feedback </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. This section speaks volumes… about your thought process
  16. 16. Problem/Market Opportunity <ul><li>What’s the REALLY BIG PROBLEM you’re solving? </li></ul><ul><li>What’s the market size? How much is spent ON THIS PROBLEM today? </li></ul><ul><li>How fast is the market growing? Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) </li></ul><ul><li>Hubcaps vs. cars </li></ul><ul><li>What are the market trends? </li></ul><ul><li>Why invest now? </li></ul>
  17. 17. Market: Tips for Success <ul><li>Think Big </li></ul><ul><ul><li>$1-1.5B market size hurdle for many VC’s – or their economics don’t work </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Include global, not just domestic markets </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Have customer purchase knowledge before meeting investors </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Bottoms Up </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Start with the economics of one customer </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Then build it up to a customer base: “Bottoms Up” analysis means this many customers, spending this much = market size </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do “bottoms-up” math: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>(# of customers) x (% who buy each year) x (average amount spent annually) = market size </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Top Down </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Compare to “tops-down” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>“ Gartner says this will be a $50B market by 2011 – we just need “__%”. This doesn’t work – but it can be used to reconcile your bottoms up analysis. </li></ul></ul></ul>
  18. 18. Terminology <ul><li>“ Available Market” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Everyone who has this problem, that could someday buy your solution </li></ul></ul><ul><li>“ Addressable Market” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Everyone you plan to address with this version of your solution </li></ul></ul><ul><li>“ Demand side” vs. “Supply side” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Demand = measure of customer spending </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Supply = measure of supplier revenues </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Both are valid </li></ul></ul>
  19. 19. Now the stage is set…
  20. 20. Business Concept <ul><li>Introduce your company - what’s your idea? </li></ul><ul><li>What kind of company are you? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ We sell software”, “We license IP to pharmaceuticals” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Who will you sell to? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Specific titles, demographics, examples </li></ul></ul><ul><li>What are their biggest problems? </li></ul><ul><li>How being addressed today? </li></ul><ul><li>What are people willing to pay for your solution? </li></ul>
  21. 21. Examples <ul><li>“ We replace redundant local accounting systems with a single global system…” </li></ul><ul><li>“ We use a specialized, customized, online survey tool to replace in-person tax interviews by expensive tax accountants…” </li></ul><ul><li>“ 75% of computer users have pictures, music, or other valuable data that is not backed up...” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Most data security has focused on the corporate perimeter, yet most breaches are internal. We stop internal users from accessing stored data they should not be accessing.” </li></ul>
  22. 22. Typically the longest section (and unnecessarily so)
  23. 23. Solution <ul><li>What is your solution to the problem? </li></ul><ul><li>What is your technology? </li></ul><ul><li>Underlying technology? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Platform decisions? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Development tools? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>How does it work? </li></ul><ul><li>How is it better? </li></ul><ul><li>Functions? Features? </li></ul><ul><li>What are you actually selling? </li></ul><ul><li>Answer, “So what?” Describe benefits . </li></ul>
  24. 24. Solution: Tips <ul><li>Include 1-2 pictures, diagrams, graphs, flowcharts, screenshots. </li></ul><ul><li>What’s your vision? Roadmap? </li></ul><ul><li>What is your role in the value chain? What other components to the “Whole Product”? </li></ul><ul><li>Layperson language for angel investors and BP competition – assume VCs have experience </li></ul><ul><li>Save technical details and secret recipes for due diligence </li></ul><ul><li>Show some restraint! </li></ul>
  25. 25. Show Them The Money… If You Want Them to Show You The Money
  26. 26. Customer Use & Value Proposition <ul><li>Include your protagonist, the customer, in the story. </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How is their life better after using your solution? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>How do economics work for one customer? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How does that customer justify purchase? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Include “Whole Product” cost </li></ul></ul>
  27. 27. Just don’t ever, ever say, “We have none”
  28. 28. Competition <ul><li>From the buyer’s perspective </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Who else do buyers consider as substitutes? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>From the investor’s perspective </li></ul><ul><ul><li>If you prove there’s a profitable market, who else would enter? Then how will you beat them? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What’s your strategy to win long term? </li></ul></ul>
  29. 29. Barriers to Entry/ Intellectual Property <ul><li>Brief (1-2 sentence) patent description & number </li></ul><ul><li>Patent approval status </li></ul><ul><li>Status of key regulatory approvals (e.g., FDA approval, NSA certification, Gorilla vendor certification) </li></ul><ul><li>Also different business model, limited distributors or partners, few global players, financials required to be successful, etc. </li></ul>
  30. 30. “ So, how do you make money?”
  31. 31. Revenue Model / Business Model <ul><li>Describe revenue streams & pricing, e.g.: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>License fees, subscription revenues, service contracts, consulting fees, gain share, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Distinguish 1-time vs. ongoing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Distinguish by product and market </li></ul></ul><ul><li>What is pricing based on? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>How does price compare to customer value? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>What PROOF do you have that customers will actually pay this for your solution? </li></ul></ul>
  32. 32. What happens when you actually go try to sell this?
  33. 33. Sales, Marketing & Alliances <ul><li>A.K.A. “Go to Market” strategy </li></ul><ul><li>How will your reach your customers? </li></ul><ul><li>How much website traffic? </li></ul><ul><li>Type of sales model (direct, keywords, telesales, through partners, etc.) </li></ul><ul><li>What will it cost to sell the product? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the risks? </li></ul><ul><li>How long before the sales model is proven? </li></ul><ul><li>What will it take to prove the cost of sales? </li></ul>
  34. 34. Sales, Marketing, Alliances Tips <ul><li>Your product is unlikely to “sell itself” </li></ul><ul><li>Examine sales models and financials from similar companies to see what works; estimate costs </li></ul><ul><li>Compare (total expenses spent selling to date) / (number of customers) = sales & marketing costs </li></ul><ul><li>Compare sales & marketing to product cost </li></ul><ul><li>Factor in: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sales ramp up time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Customer education time </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Customer budget cycles </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sales compensation requirements </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Not all reps make quota </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Typical # accounts/representative </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li># contacts per account </li></ul></ul>
  35. 35. How will you build it?
  36. 36. Operations/Manufacturing <ul><li>For product companies </li></ul><ul><li>How will product be built? </li></ul><ul><li>Who on the team is managing? </li></ul><ul><li>Are costs known? Contracted for? </li></ul><ul><li>Offshoring? Outsourcing? Your team’s experience with this? </li></ul>
  37. 37. Probably requires the most effort after “customers”
  38. 38. Financials <ul><li>Quarterly for two years, 5 years total </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Income </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Expenses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Margin </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cash Requirements </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Summarize financials in a table </li></ul><ul><li>Include hockey-stick graph </li></ul><ul><li>Include key assumptions </li></ul><ul><li>Reference your financial model (the spreadsheet in your investor kit) </li></ul>
  39. 39. The Ask
  40. 40. Financing/Uses of Funds <ul><li>How much capital are you raising? </li></ul><ul><li>Debt/equity? </li></ul><ul><li>How will the money be used? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Complete prototype </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Customer acquisition </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Management team </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Product development </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>If this is such a good deal, who are the previous investors, and where are they now? </li></ul><ul><li>Be prepared for exit strategy w/ angels; exclude for meetings with VCs </li></ul><ul><li>Do not include a valuation </li></ul>
  41. 41. This Section Speaks Volumes About You As A Leader
  42. 42. Team <ul><li>Describe the team members and advisors </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Their role & responsibility relative to the plan, and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Their relevant experience achieving similar results </li></ul></ul><ul><li>CEO </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Prior relevant experience? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Who is accountable for the investment? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Avoid “Three musketeers” </li></ul></ul>
  43. 43. Cover <ul><li>Company name </li></ul><ul><li>Industry </li></ul><ul><li>Date </li></ul><ul><li>Contact information </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Name of primary contact </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Email </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Office phone </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Mobile phone </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Company website </li></ul></ul>
  44. 44. Tool: Business Concept Questionnaire Writer’s block? Make this your first stop – 12 page questionnaire
  45. 45. <ul><li>Steve, your business concept questionnaire is AWESOME. It really helped to expand how to describe our business and structure our investor presentation. </li></ul><ul><li>We had our first VC meeting today, and it went very well – the questionnaire helped us crystallize our business concept and anticipate the vast majority of their questions…. Thank you! </li></ul><ul><li>- Phil Cullen </li></ul><ul><li> President, Acqua Consulting </li></ul>“ “
  46. 46. Questions? <ul><li>Why a business plan </li></ul><ul><li>What is your concept </li></ul><ul><li>What to include </li></ul><ul><li>How to get started </li></ul><ul><li>Q&A </li></ul>
  47. 47. How to Write a Great Business Plan Steve Tennant Tennant Consulting