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Irish Business Plans has over fifteen years experience preparing business plans. We cater for clients applying for loans, investment, grants and more.
Below you will find the typical format we use. It is free for you to download and tailor to your needs. The sample is available in both Word and PDF formats.
Please feel free to get in touch if writing your plan becomes too time consuming or if it needs professional input. Our expert business plan service is efficient and affordable.
Contact us for a free quotation, our prices start at €590.
WHAT OUR PLANS CONTAIN
The executive summary is effectively a synopsis of the entire business plan. It should capture the essence of the business, setting out the rationale and logic behind the likelihood for its success. The style of writing should capture the reader’s attention without being overly dramatic. Typically, the section starts with an introductory paragraph or overview, after which the following headings will be discussed at a high level.
Products or Services
Market or Industry Synopsis
Entrepreneur’s Background and Staffing Plan
Sales History or Projections
Funding and Expenditure
Key Financial Indicators
The company overview is generally the shortest section in the business plan. It should include a mission statement, details of the company’s legal structure and ownership, a brief history of the business/idea, and the business location. Conclude with short term objectives, focusing on the areas such as operations, sales and revenue, marketing, and funding.
This is where the business plan begins to get meaty. Both the problem which the business is solving and the actual solution are described in detail. Identify customers’ main pain point. Address what sets your solution apart from other alternatives. Areas such as pricing, sourcing and fulfilment, and future products or services are also covered in this section.
Next, attention turns to the market. Who is the business selling to? Who are its competitors? What forces are influencing the market? How will the company build and sustain a competitive advantage? What research have you done?
The section can be broken down into a number of sub-headings:
Market Influences e.g. social, suppliers, legal, technological, environmental
Competition & Building a Competitive Advantage
S.W.O.T. Analysis i.e. strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, threats
The company’s sales forecasts are outlined here. The level of complexity will vary depending on the nature of the business or the purpose of the plan. The company will need to have decided on its pricing strategy, and come-up with realistic sales targets.
The forecast is typically broken down into several rows, with a row for each core product or service that you are offering. However, the sales forecast should not be overly detailed. A high level breakdown is sufficient. The section also shows the cost of sales.
Marketing is a complex discipline, however, for the most part this section will focus on the promotional elements of the marketing mix.
To begin with, set out goals and objectives which the company hopes to achieve from the promotional activity. Then outline what these activities will consist of.
Most modern business plans will contain a mixture of traditional and digital marketing. Budgets and timelines may also be include here.
OPERATIONS & MANAGEMENT
Investors don’t invest in ideas, they invest in people. Can you actually accomplish what you have planned? Do you have the right team in place to turn a good idea into a great business? Here is where you answer these questions. The operations section is where the best case is made that the right team is in place to execute the business idea. It shows that the important roles and responsibilities within the business have all been carefully considered. Include brief bios of each team member with their relevant experience and education highlighted. Also make provision for future personnel requirements. Conclude with a projected payroll table.
Normally, this section will include two sets of financials – a Profit & Loss (P&L) projection and a Cash Flow projection.
The P&L is where all the numbers come together and show if the business is making a profit or loss. It pulls data from the sales forecast and personnel plan and also includes a list of all other ongoing expenses associated with running the business. The P&L also contains the all important “bottom line” where expenses are subtracted from earnings to show if the company is making a profit each month or potentially incurring some losses as it grows.
The Cash Flow statement keeps track of how much cash (money in the bank) a business has at any given point. A typical cash flow statement starts with the amount of cash the business has on hand, adds new cash received through cash sales and paid invoices, and then subtracts cash that the business has paid out as it pays bills, interest, taxes, etc. This then leaves a total cash flow (cash in minus cash out) and ending cash (starting cash + cash in – cash out = ending cash).
More complex plans may also require a Balance Sheet.
Belingard Trading Ltd.
The quality of the document was sharp and slick with robust financials! It gave us the confidence to engage with investors. Mark understood my vision and ensured the document reflected it. I found everybody that I dealt with committed, efficient and to have strong business acumen.
The Beauty Boutique
Without doubt a 5-star service, our business plan was so thorough and professional that the commercial loan manager remarked on it when applying for the loan - and again 4 days later when we went to the bank to draw down our loan!
Our plan, written by IBP, was instrumental in our recent successful loan application.
I would highly recommend the service and we will use them again should the need arise.