#new business financing
Funding a New Small Business? Don’t Bother With Banks
Question: What steps should I take before applying for a loan to open a small business? I’d like to maximize my chances of getting a good response.
Answer: Getting a small business bank loan is never easy, and it’s been especially difficult since the financial crash of 2008 and the lingering credit crunch. Even though small business lending is rebounding somewhat, it is still virtually impossible to get a loan to open a new business.
That’s because lenders want to see a financial track record for your business that demonstrates your ability to repay the money they’re lending you. Without that kind of history, the lender has no way to know if your venture will be successful enough to make good on your obligation. Banks are lenders, not investors, and they’re not interested in knowingly making equity investments in businesses, as an industry representative told me in 2011.
So what are your options? Most entrepreneurs start their businesses with savings; they put startup costs on credit cards; or they get loans from friends and family. There are also more creative ways to raise startup capital, such as babysitting or renting out a room in your apartment.
The void in bank lending has spurred the growth of alternative lending, which can be costly but gets money to entrepreneurs quickly and without a lot of hassle. Another new option is crowdfunding through websites such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo.
Some niche alternatives that have sprung up are less well-known. For instance, culinary businesses can apply to the Whole Foods Local Producer loan program, which the company says has lent $10 million to businesses making local food products since its inception in 2007. Interest rates range from 5 percent to 9 percent, and it helps if your company is already a Whole Foods supplier, though it’s not mandatory.
Or maybe you need a loan to buy a franchise business. Many franchisers started to recognize that they’d need to help prospective franchisees with financing after home equity—once a common source of startup cash—plunged in many parts of the country. Matco Tools, which has been selling tools to auto mechanics via independent distributors since 1979, ramped up its in-house financing program in 2008, says John Green, vice president for marketing and e-commerce at Matco Tools. The program can cover up to 100 percent of initial inventory and working capital costs for qualified prospects who want to buy Matco franchises, which range between $89,000 and $144,000.
Perhaps a more realistic option for you is connecting with a nonprofit microlender. Caitlin McShane, communications director of Opportunity Fund. a California microlender, says her organization is making several times as many loans as it did five years ago. “We lend between $1 million and $2 million a month and do over 1,000 loans a year,” she says. The organization has offices in San Francisco, San Jose, and Los Angeles. It is currently running a startup funding challenge that aims to provide loans of up to $50,000 at 7.5 percent interest.
When you do get your business to the point that a bank loan is a more realistic possibility, after two to three years of operations, here are some tips from Laurie Pettinella Zona, a partner in early-stage startup accelerator K5Launch.
Make the loan officer’s job easier by “clearly illustrating why your business is a less risky investment,” she says. Be clear-eyed about what the risks are, however, as pretending to be risk-free is a bad idea. “Show that your business has a proven business model” with steady, paying customers, she says. And “put your best foot forward and sell yourself: your résumé, background, references, prior successful businesses, and history of paying back loans or investors.” Paying down your personal debt and getting your credit score as high as possible are also good ideas.
Before it’s here, it’s on the Bloomberg Terminal. LEARN MORE
#small business payroll
Series: Payroll Information for a New Small Business
Throughout this series, we refer to links where you can find more information about the topic being discussed. You can find all of these links, organized by segment, by referring to the Related links page – open it in a separate tab or window and follow along as you watch each video.
We are looking for your comments about this video series. After viewing the segments of the video that are of interest to you, please take a moment to complete our comments form.
This is the introduction to the video called Payroll Information for a New Small Business.
This segment will help you determine for tax purposes what is meant by the term “employer.”
This segment contains information on opening a payroll account with the CRA.
This segment contains information on paying and hiring new employees.
This segment contains information on employee benefits.
This segment contains general information on deducting Canada Pension Plan contributions and employment insurance premiums.
New Google Knowledge Panel Business Photo Shenanigans
Google, never particularly transparent about how to get the photos that you want to show in your Knowledge Panel, seems to be throwing another curve ball to local businesses (h/t to Lance Moore at Uptick marketing in Birmingham and Destin ).
While the image that you chose as a profile photo might show, now when you click on it, you are taken to Google Image search, rather than to the businesses chosen photos for that business that were uploaded via the Google My Business Dashboard.
If the listing no longer notes see photos in the lower right of the Knowledge Graph profile image then the images, when clicked will take the user to Google Image search.
The images showing in Google Image search may or may not be very relevant. In my case I am seeing images for my long dead father, a politician named blumenthal, a uniform stored named Blumenthal, some images from blog posts and who knows what else.
When you click on the profile photo it takes you to Image Search. Note that if the profile image says See photos it still will direct you to your and user uploaded images.
If this is a new feature, I can sum up my thoughts on it very succinctly:
A business should be able to put photos of itself and they should have some measure of control over those photos. Taking users to random photos is bad for everyone. Do businesses need one more reputation management/(stupid) SEO task on their plate?
If this is more than a test then shouldn t businesses be advised? At some point, this change MIGHT make sense.
But businesses that have focused on uploading images to the GMB now need to think about being sure that their images on their website are actually the ones that Google should show. It seems a lot to ask of most small businesses. And they need to be aware that images from around the web could be showing thus creating both a new SEO obligation PLUS a new reputation management concern.
The change has not occured to hotel Knowledge Panel images nor big brands like Target and Best Buy. And for now, images in the Local Finder still reference the GMB and Maps images. The change seems to be impacting SMB Knowledge Panels only at this point.
This is a really, really big mistake on Google s part. Their image search is nowhere near useful or accurate enough to be used for this sort of thing. And the damage this is doing to small businesses is huge.
Your article prompted me to conduct a fresh Google Image Search for my business name Hill Web Creations . I was fascinated by what came up and pleased. After doing a click-through test on the top 20, it appears that most are drawn from my Google+ posts for my businesses page. Few link directly to the exact page or post on my website.
try updating information for a business. so far i have submitted 30+ requests for change (getting closer to 50 now..) knowledge panel is broken
Local U Advanced New Orleans
#small business bureau
Mayor Announces Expanded Tech Talent Pipeline
Mayor de Blasio announced new commitments and expanded training programs designed to equip New Yorkers with 21st century skills and connections to employment as part of the administration’s NYC Tech Talent Pipeline initiative. The expanded and upgraded programs have been designed to serve over an additional 1,700 New Yorkers, building upon the Tech Talent Pipeline’s existing work to serve 750 participants through its 10 existing programs.
Mayor Launches Program for Low Income and Immigrant Women Entrepreneurs
Mayor de Blasio announced the launch of “WE Master Leadership,” a public educational workshop series that will provide low-income and immigrant women entrepreneurs with the necessary skills and tools to launch, grow and sustain a business. The program is expected to serve an additional 500 women annually, while the overall WE NYC initiative is on track to serve over 5,000 women by 2019.
Mayor Announces Opening of Brooklyn Industrial and Transportation Center
Mayor Bill de Blasio today announced the expansion of the Jamaica, Queens Workforce1 Career Center with the opening of the new Workforce1 Industrial and Transportation Career (ITC) Center in Brooklyn. The expansion will result in helping another 1,000 New Yorkers find new and better jobs in the industrial and manufacturing sectors.
Read the Press Release
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Start a new business – Industry start-up guides – Cleaning Services – Small Business
What is involved in running a cleaning services business?
Cleaning service business operators provide a wide range of domestic and commercial cleaning services. This may include working in homes, businesses, schools, shopping centres, public spaces and other buildings and facilities.
As a cleaner, your role will involve the following activities and tasks:
- cleaning and sanitising kitchen areas
- cleaning and sanitising bathrooms and toilets
- vacuuming and cleaning carpets
- cleaning upholstery and drapery
- mopping, polishing and waxing floors
- dusting high and low surfaces
- swimming pool maintenance
- making beds and changing bed linen
- performing home duties such as loading dishwashers, doing laundry and ironing
- polishing furniture and fittings
- cleaning windows, mirrors and light fixtures
- cleaning corridors and entrance ways, stairs, lifts and foyers
- emptying rubbish bins
- moving furniture
- r eporting faulty plumbing or other problems
Running a cleaning services business will also involve some tasks in addition to cleaning duties, such as finding new clients, managing your existing client accounts, creating invoices and completing some bookkeeping tasks. You will also need to maintain your equipment and manage your inventory and supplies.
Do I need any qualifications, licences or permits to work as a cleaner?
It is possible to work within the personal and home services industry as a cleaner without formal qualifications; however, there are various courses that can assist in developing customer service skills and personal and home services industry knowledge, such as a Certificate III in Cleaning Operations. For further information about undertaking an accredited course, please contact your nearest TAFE or Registered Training Organisation.
You should also check the relevant business licensing authority in your state and see if you are required to obtain any permits and/or licences prior to setting up your cleaning business.
You need to be aware that there may be some licensing and registration regulations in your state that govern water use for business, and storing bulk cleaning chemicals. As a business owner, you are responsible for the handling, labelling and storage of hazardous chemicals used in your business. If you plan to discharge trade waste into the sewerage system, you may need to check with your local council to see if a permit is required.
What facilities and equipment will I need to run my business?
Generally, cleaners don t need an office space or other facilities. As long as you have the essentials such as access to a mobile phone, fax, computer and internet access you should be able to effectively operate your business. It is important to ensure that it is easy for potential clients to contact you for quotes and enquiries.
A cleaning business will need to have a vehicle in order to provide a mobile service for the transportation of the required equipment (vacuum cleaner, mop and bucket, etc.). Reliable transport is very important for cleaners who are travelling outside their local areas. A vehicle such as a mini-van is useful for this type of business as it has the necessary storage space.
Depending on the type of services you plan to include, some of the equipment you may require include;
- back pack vacuum cleaners
- window squeegee
- cleaning chemicals (for windows, tables, and tiles, etc.)
- blade scrapers
- safety equipment such as uniforms, goggles, boots and gloves etc.
- garbage bags
- polishing pads
What about the costs and how much can I charge?
Often new cleaning businesses will utilise their own equipment from home, and then purchase professional gear as they build the business. This makes for a smaller initial outlay and less financial risk if the business is slow to get going at the beginning.
If your start up capital permits, look at buying cleaning chemicals in bulk and try to get concentrates as this will save you a significant amount in the long run. Remember to keep in mind the storage requirements and regulations that might apply to bulk chemical purchases.
A cleaning business normally charges by the hour. Some may require a service to be undertaken for a minimum number of hours, e.g. minimum charge two hours. This means clients pay for two hours for any service equal to or under two hours, and extra payment is required on a hourly base for any time over two hours. Alternatively, some businesses charge by the size of facility to be serviced, e.g. number of rooms.
Customer service is crucial to the success of your business. If you are taking on domestic cleaning jobs you need to be mindful that are you entering a client s home, which is their personal space. You need to be dressed appropriately, not only to do your job but so that you look professional and presentable. You need to have good communication skills and know how to deal with customer complaints and dissatisfaction. A cleaning business heavily relies on word of mouth for advertising and reputation, so you must ensure that every customer is satisfied with the product or level of service you are providing.
Do I need insurance?
Before you start taking on any jobs, make sure you have adequate insurance coverage in place for damage and liability. Things may happen unexpectedly while on the job and you need to be in a position where you are sufficiently covered for any accidents or claims against you and your business. You also need to check your insurer s policy to see if they will cover you for both domestic and commercial cleaning or if you have to pay an additional premium to be insured for commercial jobs.
What if I want to employ staff or use contractors?
If you plan on employing staff for your business, you will need to be aware and up to date on issues such as:
- Pay rates and allowances
- Annual leave calculations
- National employment standards
- Industrial relations news
Where can I find more help and assistance?
Below is a list of industry associations that can further assist you in starting up a cleaning business and providing industry specific information:
The first step is to talk to your local business advisor about starting up your new venture. You can also call the Small Business Support Line on 1800 777 275 for more information.
BBA New Business – BA (Hons) in Business Management – Nyenrode Business Universiteit #small
BBA New Business BA (Hons) in Business Management
The Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) New Business Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Business Management is an international practice oriented bachelor for ambitious students who are ready to chase their dreams. You will be thoroughly prepared for an international business career and / or to run your own business.
Real life business cases in Ethiopia, India and China
Create your own Start-Up in our Incubator Studying a semester at the University of Westminster in London Focus on personal professional leadership skills Combining the academic development with professional practice
Highly involved teachers in a stimulating environment
Main location in Amsterdam, with some intensive weeks at Nyenrode campus in Breukelen and one semester in London.
You can follow a general business degree or specialize in one of four business areas:
- Creative Industries
- Innovative Marketing
- Innovation Entrepreneurship
- Financial Management
Request a brochure or register for a Personal Information Meeting at the Nyenrode New Business School in Amsterdam.
Highly involved teachers in a stimulating environment
Request a brochure or register for a Personal Information Meeting at the Nyenrode New Business School in Amsterdam.
Want a New Business Start in 2015? Steal One of These Ideas #local #business
#new business ideas
I started thinking up potential large businesses to start a few years ago. It was, for lack a better term, a teaching tool.
I was looking for a way to communicate that the place to begin, if you are thinking of trying to start a company, is with a market need-and not a new idea.
Ideas are too easy. My guess is you could come up with 10 new business concepts before lunch, if you had to.
The problem is once you come up with that idea–say you are going to construct real housing out of Lego blocks, something that has always struck me as a cool idea==you then have to go and figure out if it is feasible, and if anyone-other than an 8-year-old-would live in if it were.
If you have identified a market need, then you are assured that you have a market–the people who have the need.
But is starting with the market need the only way to start a business?
Obviously not. You could start with the idea. And therein lies a potential benefit for you.
Each of the following ideas are yours for the taking. (All I ask is you make a large contribution to the charity of your choice should they make you rich.)
1. Personal shopping for the masses
This one struck me over the holidays. It has been a long time since I had to go shopping for 8-year-olds. Wouldn’t it be lovely if there was a personal concierge you could call who could walk you through what is popular and/or appropriate? High end department and clothing stores already have this service. This would make it available for the rest of us. (And if mass market stores like Target and Toy “R” Us wanted to offer this service to me, I would be happy to pay them for it.)
2. No more, “For customer service, please hold.”
I am usually willing to trade (a little bit of) money for (a little bit) more time. And while you can do mundane things while waiting on hold when you call the cable, phone or electric company, it really is a) annoying and b) the classic waste of time. Your charge? Figure a way that I can pay a couple of dollars a month in exchange for the various companies letting me jump the line when I need help. I don’t think it would be that hard. It really is just a different form of caller ID.
3. A place where you can sell your killer recipes
There are literally millions of great cooks out there. (My wife among them.) And invariably a great cook comes up with a great recipe–or 10. There should be some sort of marketplace to sell them. This idea already exists in other places. For example, people who crochet can sell the patterns they create on Etsy.com
As I said, I am not going to be doing anything with these ideas. I hope they make you a fortune. (As I said, just play it forward once you do.)
#boston business journal
Boston Business Journal names new publisher
Carolyn M. Jones has been named publisher and market president of the Boston Business Journal, effective Wednesday. Jones has been publisher of the Albany Business Review since 1998.
A story on the Boston Business Journal website states, Jones replaces Gale Murray. who will be rejoining American City Business Journals’ national sales organization in a senior management role. ACBJ is the parent company of the BBJ and the Albany Business Review. Murray has been publisher of the Business Journal since June 2014, and will remain based in Boston.
I want to personally thank Gale for leading the BBJ through a period of great change. Her accomplishments were many, in a short period of time, said Michael Olivieri, executive vice president at American City Business Journals and a former publisher of the Boston Business Journal. We have asked Gale to return to our national sales operation in a management role where the pace of change is excelling and where Gale has had a significant impact in the past and will in the future.
Over the past 17 years, Carolyn Jones has led the Albany Business Review to consistently be one of the best-performing business journals in ACBJ, Olivieri continued. Carolyn’s thoughtful leadership approach will be a great addition to Boston’s business community. Carolyn is also passionate about the important role the Boston Business Journal plays in helping the region’s business executives and entrepreneurs grow their business, advance their career, and simplify their professional lives.’
#new business plan
The 8 Essential Elements of an Annual New Business Plan
The job of an agency new business professional is akin to organizing chaos dictated by demanding pitch schedules. Compounding this, Q4 often brings a flurry of pitch activity known to ruin many a Thanksgiving or Christmas holiday.
And while all this activity helps to fill the pipeline, the timing is unfortunate because it distracts you from the type of reflection and planning that are so important to setting you up for success for the next year or quarter.
I know. It’s tough to add another project to your already overwhelming to-do list, but I urge you to make time to write your new business and marketing plan for 2016. Here are some reasons why it’s well worth squeezing it into your 12-hour days:
- It’s the best way to measure your success. And I’m referring to the collective “you” here because it takes the entire agency to make new business efforts effective. An annual plan not only sets expectations for you but also for others at the agency who need to contribute to the agency’s success.
- You’ll learn a lot! It gives you an opportunity to reflect on the past 12 months and accurately set projections for the year ahead.
- It sheds some light on what the heck you do at your agency. For those who are not routinely involved in new business, it can seem like a black hole of mystery. Sharing your plan — whether to an executive committee, department heads, or even the entire staff — adds clarity and gives everyone something to aim for.
- Your boss will be impressed. Don’t wait to be asked. Get on your CEO’s schedule to review your outline and discuss your intentions for putting this plan together.
Sometimes the hardest part is getting started, so I’m going to get the ball rolling for you by giving you a basic outline to follow.
8 Elements to Include in Your New Business Plan
1) Executive Summary
This has to be written last, but it should always come first. By starting with a smart, concise summary, you’re showing the same kind of respect for your audience’s time and attention as you would if this were a RFP response.
2) The Team
Define the new business and marketing ecosystem at your agency. Who’s on your team, and what do they do? How did you grow this year, and how are you planning to grow next year? Do you need to hire to achieve your new goals? What kind of operational efficiencies did you introduce?
Analyzing the past year will help you better forecast the year ahead. Where are your opportunities coming from? How many pitches did you participate in? Were they the right ones (in terms of revenue, cultural fit, creative opportunity, etc.)? Did you wait for requests to come to you, or were you more proactive? As you answer these, you’ll start to see a profile emerge that will help you make better decisions about what to pursue and what to decline next year.
4) The Marketplace
What kind of trends are you seeing? Think about things like the trend towards project work versus AOR assignments. How does your agency need to adjust to stay competitive? Who are your competitors now? What agencies do you want to be competing against a year from now?
5) Revenue Goals
Crunch the numbers. Based on your historical win rate, how many pitches do you need to be in to meet your numbers? How much can you rely on organic growth? How much do you need to focus on proactive prospecting? Don’t do this in a vacuum; spend time with your CFO and CEO to make sure you are managing their expectations as well as integrating corporate financial goals into your plan.
6) Meeting Those Goals
This is a biggie and probably where you’ll need to sink most of your time. Dust off your selection criteria, and start doing your research. You want to determine the categories you’re best suited to pursue (and why) or refine your ideal client profile. and then use that to define a super-targeted list of prospects. Another important point to include in this section is the level of support you expect from your colleagues in other departments such as strategy, research, and design. What’s it going to take to make a compelling pitch to your prospects?
7) New Business Tools
What tools are you lacking to meet your goals? If you’re planning on doing a ton of personal outreach, you’ll want to invest in a good contact management database or CRM. an email program, a marketing automation tool, or other solutions. Maybe this is the year for a website redesign. Or, if you’re getting invited to the pitch but not making it past the first round, maybe you need to learn how to tell your story better and invest in rewriting your case studies and credentials.
8) PR and Marketing
How will your agency’s positioning serve you? Is it strong enough to differentiate you from your competition? Is it meaningful enough to inform your messaging? What kind of events should you attend? Speak at? Or do you create your own event? What kind of awards shows should you enter? Besides getting you mentioned in the usual suspects such as Ad Age and Adweek. what can your PR team do to get you exposure in vertical trade publications or at conferences?
This may seem like a daunting amount of work. That’s why you need to start planning it out now. It’s a little more daunting if this is the first time you’ve ever created a plan so know that it gets easier and easier each year.
I can’t promise a last-minute RFP won’t ruin your holiday season, but now it’s a lot less likely that your new business plan will.