25 January 2018
Hansie Britz

TEN RULES TO WRITE A KILLER BUSINESS OR FARMING PLAN

                                     

A Business Plan or Farming Plan is a selling document; a succinct breakdown of how, where, and why your business will generate a profit. Your business plan must convince potential investors – be they bankers, venture capitalists or private investors – to throw money your way. If you can convince them via your business plan or farming plan that they will realise a profit over time, you’re well on your way.

If you are setting up a farming business then it is prudent for you to put pen to paper in a farming business plan. If you want money for your farming operation this will help you with it and even if you are fortunate to have sufficient capital to start-up your own farming operation then a farming business plan will support you in your farming business startegy. This will increase the chances of your business being a triumph, which cannot be a bad thing.

Here are ten rules to write a killer business plan or farming business plan:

Know your reader. Always remember who you’re addressing. Financiers are hard-nosed capitalists, so they want firm facts and figures and sold details as how your idea will generate profit.

Research your potential market. The more you know about competitors and your customer base, the more you will be able to impess your potential backer. Your business plan or farming business plan must provide credible data about the size of your potential customer base, its needs, and trends affecting it. You must also show the respective strengths and weaknesses of your competitors, their market share and how your product or service matches up to theirs.

Follow the format. Business plans and Farming Business Plans are about facts and figures, not creative genius. There are definite rules for compiling one. A professional business plan or farming plan should have (but not limited to):

  • An Execitive Summary;
  • An explanation of the business idea;
  • A Management review;
  • A Marketing strategy;
  • Operations Plan;
  • A Risk Assessment;
  • Financial projections covering cash flow, balance sheet and profit.

Keep the type size and line spacing generous and the margins wide so that the document is easy to read. Keep your language simple with minimal technical jargon. Don’t waffle. Get straight to the point.

Drive home the USP. The essence of your business idea is its “unique selling proposition” or USP. Your USP must seperate your product or service from the competition; make it unique, something the public will buy because it meets a definite need. Use your USP as a point of reference throughout your plan and make all your research and financial  data support this selling proposition.

Make your executive summary sing. The first thing a financier will read in your business plan or farming business plan is the “executive summary”. It must, in a couple of pages, describe the entire business plan or farming business plan in a zippy, exciting way. You have to capture and retain the reader’s interest. Imagine you are making a thirty- second commercial of your entire plan; that limits you to mentioning only the really important elements from each section. Write it with the USP in mind and distil all the important information to highlight your competitive edge.

Punt your expertise. Let the reader know your history and skills relevant to the business idea. Describe the expertise of your associates too, even if they are outsourced strategic partners. It is common these days for small companies to use established businesses to handle certain areas of the business, like accounting and distribution.

Show marketing savvy. Venture capitalists will look very closely at how you intend to bring your product or service to the market. Innovative marketing ideas go a long way swaying financiers. Describe in detail how you intend to gain market share, how much, and in what time period. Explain how your competitors reach their market and describe how you intend to outflank them.

Be realistic in your financials and rollout schedule. There’s always a temptation to paint a rosy picture for your potential backer i.e. juicy returns in double- quick time. Be conservative in your predictions of how much and how quickly you will sell. Remember, your backer will hold you to your promises.

Know your numbers. Crucial to getting the capital you need is knowing how much to ask for and what kind of financing you need. Your financial projections and rollout schedule will illustrate your financing requirements, but, you must state what kind of arrangement you want to enter into with your potential backer, be it a loan (carrying repayable interest) or equity (offering a slice of future profits). Declaring exactly what kind of financial assistance you need will inspire confidence in your potential backer.

Seek advice. There are several organizations in South Africa willing to offer advice and information on critical areas around the plan. A great business idea and a tight business plan or farming business plan will get you a hearing with potential backers.

IF YOU NEED ANY HELP IN THIS AREA OR A FARMING PLAN CONTACT US NOW AT: money@global.co.za or 0845833143

BEWARE OF CHEAP LOW COST OR GENERIC TYPE OF BUSINESS OR FARMING BUSINESS PLANS. THEY WILL NOT FLY WITH ANY INVESTOR.

                                  

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17 January 2018
Hansie Britz

Funding Requirements

                                   

Capital is vital for you to grow your business and take advantage of opportunities when they occur. One way to get this capital is to allow others to invest in your enterprise. Such an investment involves exchanging funds for equity in your business. The difference between equity and debt is that debt involves borrowing money which you will have to pay back with interest. Equity funding, on the other hand, involves selling part of the ownership of your business. the purchasers (share holders) assume that, with the use of their funds, the enterprise will be profitable enough over time to justify their investment. 

Don’t equate shareholder ownership with control of your business. You can still retain day-to-day control of your business without having 100% ownership. If you’re unwilling to share ownership, then you will not receive any investment capital.

Investment is often provided in stages by the capital investors against agreed milestones. In other words, you will receive some of the funding which you must use to meet agreed objectives. Then you may receive additional funding, again against agreed objectives, until all objectives are achieved.

You should select investors based on their total contribition to your business, not just how much money they will give you. It is possibly more important to get an investor that will help you grow your business rather than one who simply provides a sum of money.

As your enterprise grows, you may seek multiple investments. This will often involve different investors. Select those investors that best suit your company’s current need. For example, your first investment may require capital for development. For this you might need an investor with technical expertise.

Following a successful development program the next investment might be for production and marketing. Here you might need an investor with marketing expertise. With a successful market entry you may need additional capital to address the international market where an investor with international contacts would be beneficial.

You’ll probably find it easier to acquire the third investment than the first, because by then you’ll have proven you can meet given objectives and milestones. Remember to take advantage of all the assistance and help that’s out there in the marketplace when you’re seeking investment capital.

IF YOU WANT TO DISCUSS THIS FURTHER OR NEED ANY HELP/ASSISTANCE CONTACT US NOW: Email – money@global.co.za or 084 583 3143

             

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15 January 2018
Hansie Britz

Table Grapes & Raisin Farming

                  

Table grapes are grapes intended for consumption while they are fresh, as opposed to grapes grown for wine production, juice production, or for drying into raisins. Table varieties usually have lower sigar content than wine grapes and are more flavourful when eaten. The Orange River; the valleys of the Hex, Berg and Olifants Rivers; and Limpopo province are the main producers of table grapes.

Planting Tips

Follow these easy tips for growing delicious grapes:-

Soil Preparation: Choose a sunny place for your grape plant to grow, where the soil drains well. Prepare a 60cm x 60cm hole. Mix some rich, compost into the topsoil removed from the hole and put this mix back into the hole. Compost also helps soil retain water.

Plant Correctly: Plant the root and stem of the vine about 400mm deep, leaving about 50mm of stem above the ground level. Cover the exposed stem with loose soil. New shoots will force their way through the mound of soil and do not need to be covered.

During the summer, allow it to grow unchecked. Remember to fertilise regularly but try to keep soil fertility at a moderate level – too much fertiliser will cause excessive vegetative growth, while too little will decrease the plant’s productivity.

Always mulch your plants – mulch conserves soil water and is Water Wise.

Pruning

  • In the first winter, choose the strongest branch of your plant and cut it back to two eyes.

  • Remove all other branches and when the two eyes send out new shoots, choose the most vigorous one and tie it to the support fence or pergola. Cut of the other shoot.

  • As the stronger shoot grows, tie it to the support fence and pinch off side shoots at every 25cm interval.

  • When the selected shoot reaches the desired height, cut it off at this height. The two sideshoots which develop are now trained to grow horizontally outward on each side of the main stem.

Grapevines are not difficult to grow- they like gravel and stony soils, where the soil drains well. They do not respond well to over- or under watering. As they are woody climbing vines you will need to provide a strong support for your grape plant, such as a pergola or strong fence.

RAISIN PRODUCTION

25 years ago, a raisin was a raisin. All raisins were made from Thompson Seedless grapevines and all were tray dried in the field. Research and Development work has now given us more than six different seedless varieties of grapes that can be made into raisins and three different commercial techniques that can be used to provide raisins.

For the last 80 years, the vast majority of raisins have been made from Thompson Seedless grapevines, using a traditional drying process where field workers manually harvest clusters of mature grapes and lay them on paper trays, between the vine rows, to dry. This traditional approach to producing raisins is very labor intensive and research efforts began in the 1950s to develop mechanised raisin harvesting.

IF YOU NEED ANY HELP WITH YOUR GRAPE/RAISIN FARMING OPERATION or FARMING BUSINESS PLANS CONTACT US NOW FOR PROFESSIONAL HELP AT:      084 583 3143 or money@global.co.za

                          

 

 

 

 

20 December 2017
Hansie Britz

How to know if you have a Good Business Idea?

                       

No matter who you are or how big you hope to grow your business, figuring out what product to build or what services to offer is a huge challenge. Starting any business takes a huge leap of faith. You’re jumping off a mountain and hoping your parachute will open and lead you and your business to success.

Here’s how to figure out if your idea is any good and if it’s worth moving to the next level:-

1. Talk to potential customers.

Most entrpreneurs skip this very important step. Not talking to your potential customers raises your chances of failure substantially, so start talking to people as soon as you can.  Be sure to talk to as many potential customers as you can so you get multiple points of view. You’ll also gain invaluable insight into what your customers’ offices and workspaces look like, how they work, and how they make buying decisions and shop.

2. Figure out what people are willing to pay.

As you talk to your potential customers, try and figure out what they might be willing to pay for your solution. When it comes to finding the right price for your product or service, there is no formula and no single correct answer. Even within the same industry, what works for one company won’t necessarily work for the next. Pricing products correctly is by comparison, an art. It requires an awareness of the market as it currently exists, the vision and ability to see a market as it could or will exist, and the logic to decide on a figure that will cover costs, send a message and maximizing sales. When you have a price in mind, ask your prospective customer if they would order your product or service right now for your price. You might find that people will say yes right away, or they will tell you what they think the price should be. If you pay close attention, you’ll also be able to tell if the customer thinks they are getting a good deal or if your price is a bit of a stretch.

3. Find out how much money it is going to take to launch your business.

As you gather customer feedback, you’re hopefully honing in on a great business idea. Vetting and refining your idea before you start your business will greatly enhance your chances of success and ensure that you have a solid idea.

At this stage, you should know if you have a winning idea on your hands, but, now you need to figure out if the business can be financially viable and what you need to get it off the ground. At a minimum, at this stage you’ll want to create a sales forecast, an expense budget, and a cash flow forecast.These 3 forecasts will help you figure out what it’s going to take to start your business and keep the doors open as you get your first customers.

4. Start as small as possible.

It’s tempting to dive in at the deep end and build your complete business the way you imagine it will be. After all, you want to realize your vision that you’e been working so hard on. You’ve been talking to potential customers and selling them on your dream, and now its time to make it real.

Try and resist this urge, if possible. Starting small and continuing to gather feedback from customers is a key component to growth. With a smaller start, you’ll be able to change firection faster and react to customer feedback quicker. Starting small also gets your solution out into the market quicker. The faster you can get to the market, the faster you’ll gather feedback.

5. Stay Flexible.

The final key to making sure you have a good idea that will grow into a successful business is to stay flexible. The best business owners check their ego at the door and are able to listen to customer feedback. But, this doesn’t mean that the customer is “always right”. Far from it.

Instead, listening and being flexible enables you to adapt as you go and change directions as needed. You don’t want to react to one customer’s opinion, but you do want to look for broader trends in the opinions of as many customers as possible.

You may even decide that certain types of potential customers aren’t part of your target market. You may decide that you only want to sell to bigger businesses, for example, and you can then adjust your pricing and marketing to reflect that.

                                               

DO YOU NEED HELP AND GUIDANCE IN SETTING UP A PROFITABLE SMALL BUSINESS?

CONTACT US FOR A PROFESSIONAL SERVICE AND MORE THAN 40 YEARS BUSINESS/BANKING EXPERIENCE. CALL US AT – (27)84 583 3143 OR EMAIL: money @global.co.za

 

16 December 2017
Hansie Britz

THE IMPORTANCE OF A POSITIVE CASH FLOW

“Cash Flow” refers to the revenues a business generates (and collects) compare to the expenses it pays out over a fixed period of time. Broadly speaking, businesses bring in money through sales, financing and returns on ninvestments. And they spend money on supplies/services, as well as utilities, taxes and other bills.

Cash Flow problems affect many businesses. Amnd the data backs it up: According to a recent survey 3 out of every 5 businesses experience them. Still, while cash flow problems are not uncommon, business owners are better of doing whatever they can to avoid them altogether.

BENEFITS

Businesses that master cash flow management can:-

Pay their bills

Positive cash flow ensures employees get paid each payroll cycle. It also gives decision makers the funds they need to pay suppliers, creditors and the Government.

Invest in new opportunities

Today’s business world moves quickly. When cash is readily available, business owners can invest in opportunities that may arise at any given point in time.

Stomach the unpredictable

Having access to cash means that whenever equipment breaks, clients don’t pay their invoices on time or new government regulations come into effect, businesses can survive.

SYMPTOMS OF POOR CASH FLOW

If your business is suffering from any of the 5 following symptoms, cash flow problems may very well be on the horizon:-

  1. Your accounts receivables are high.
  2. You have too much inventory on hand.
  3. You’re overextending your business.
  4. Your sales are declining.
  5. Your business just isn’t profitable.

HOW TO MANAGE CASH FLOW

  • Know when to lease and when to buy.

Virtually all businesses need equipment, facilities and property in order to operate. Whether they should buy or lease those items is another question. If your business is strapped for cash, you might want to consider leasing equipment and renting retail or office space rather than buying it outright.

  • Make it a habit to shop around for better prices.

While it’s probably counter productive to shop around for new suppliers every other day, it might be worth reassessing your operations on a regular basis – whether monthly, quarterley or even yearly will depend on the scope of your business.

  • Consider increasing your prices.

When is the last time your company raised its prices? While your customers might not like it, just ensure your business is carefully planning your price increases and marketing them effectively. You’ll be able to generate more revenue – and maybe even more sales – while padding your bottom line.

  • Bill on a more immediate basis.

If you’re having cash flow problems, you, might want to consider accelerating your billing process, sending out invoices the moment when jobs are completed and orders are shipped. In doing so, you ensure that your client’s get their invoices faster – which hopefully means you’ll get paid quicker.

  • Incentivize customers to pay sooner.

To solve cash flow problems, you might want to offer customers favorable payment terms if they pay their invoices early.

  • Maintain cash flow statements.

By producing cash flow statements, you’ll be able to make the right adjustments to your business should you need to – whether that’s increasing prices, reducing expenses or embarking on new campaigns – to make sure your business always has the money it needs to thrive on hand.

  • Leverage modern technology.

Because the right technology makes your employees more productive, it follows that you’ll have more goods and services to sell than you would with employees relying on outdated technologies.

  • Focus on cash flow instead of profit.

Your business might generate a considerable amount of profit. But a good majority of that profit could be tied up in receivables., which doesn’t do you much good when it comes to you needing cash to cover your operating expenses.

Need any help with your cash flow problems. Let us help you out. Contact: (27) 84 583 3143 OR money@global.co.za

 

                              

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