Texas 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.

Texas Investors

Texas > Dallas

I own an investment bank in Dallas, Texas and have a large number of investors/lenders willing to invest between $250,000-$30,000,000 with the potential to be much larger depending on the opportunity. Typically the more revenue that is being generated, the easier it is to get financing.

$250,000 to $30,000,000

Texas > Dallas

Individual Investor with an MBA in Strategy and Marketing. Background is CPG Brand Management but have experience advising on multiple industries. Open to be silent or partially hands-on.

$5,000 to $20,000

Texas > Irving

My telecom company is looking to invest in interesting opportunities. I am a 28 year old finance manager and account manager for the company with experience in bar/clubs as well as many other professional experience areas. Have a bachelors in advertising/public relations, masters from UT in psychology and a masters in creative photography from CICE institute in madrid, spain. Investment experience is collectively strong between the telecom agency and family as well as myself. Other value-adders are that i am an expert photographer/advertiser/public relations administrator as well as growing interpersonal relationship studier. Anticipated involvement from the company and myself depends on the project.

$10,000 to $300,000

Texas > Austin

Age: 64 living in Austin, TX. Hospital Administrator with 40 years experience now retired. Graduate degree in Health Care Management. Experienced in all aspects of healthcare, biomedical research, medical education, IT support systems and business management software applications, learning management systems. Investments: Energy stocks. Involvement Sought: Silent partner, advisory. Extensive contacts throughout academic medicine. Status: Seeking individual investor opportunities.

$25,000 to $350,000

Texas > Missouri City

Based in Houston but interested in major markets of TX. Masters in Organizational Leadership. 5+ years of leadership, management, and business development. Looking for "hands-on or advisory" roles. Willing to help design and execute business development plan. Individual investor or investment group.

$5,000 to $100,000

Texas > Dallas

We are a global network of seasoned professional from all sectors of; Finance, Law, Real Estate, Accounting, Aerospace, Engineering, Development, Technology, Television & Film, Manufacturing to Public Company operating expertise. We work with professionals around the globe to provide the best solution to your short -- intermediate -- or long term challenges. We are an international Advisory firm that assists private and public company's in complex restructuring, financing, management, operations, branding, public relations and investor relations. Our vast network of professional can serve any size transaction. We are all equity partners -- we are not brokers. We do engage licensed brokers on an as needed basis.

$1,000,000 to $5,000,000

Texas > Mckinney

We are a small family office seeking to acquire a substantial equity interest in a small business in Texas. Our Principal will relocate to the location of the business and take a leadership role in the company. Clint has over eight years of experience in engineering and project management in the energy and biotechnology industries. He has demonstrated success leading multidisciplinary teams of blue- and white- collar workers. Clint holds a BS in Chemical Engineering from Rice University, an MS in Mechanical Engineering from MIT, and an MBA from the MIT Sloan School of Management. The investment team is comprised of engineers, lawyers, and financial consultants. Our diverse experience will add significant value to the right small business. Unlike private equity and strategic buyers, we're focused on the long term success of your company. We are looking for companies seeking an exit from their business or who would like to bring on an equity partner.

$500,000 to $8,000,000

Texas > San Antonio

I am currently a medical student with money in the bank just sitting there. In talking with current physicians they have encouraged me to start investing early.

$0 to $10,000