We make every attempt to simulate the process of entrepreneurship, whereby student entrepreneurs solicit start-up funding from angel investors and venture capital firms. The competition judges, representing these groups of potential investors, evaluate and assess the business plans, and then decide on the business venture that they would most likely fund. Various factors that influence the judges’ assessment and decisions include but are not limited to:
- Clarity, completeness, and persuasiveness of the written business plan and oral presentation.
- The usefulness and quality of the business plan concept (e.g., product, technology, service).
- The usefulness and quality of the business model.
- The marketability of the proposed venture (does demand of concept exist).
- The financial and/or social return of the proposed venture.
- Benchmarking performance milestones expressed in the business plan.
- Contingency planning and risk assessment – include plan for mitigating risk factors.
- The capacity and strength of the management team (experience and expertise).
- The quality of the team members’ responses to questions from the judges.
- The decisions of the judging panel are final. Judges may change prize amounts. If no submissions are deemed worthy, no financial awards will be made.
- Business idea or concept
- Social mission
- Target market and size
- Target clients or customers
- Competitive advantages
- Barriers to entry
- Estimated year of breakeven profitability
- Estimated quantitative social impact (also known SROI-Social Return on Investment)
- Three years of estimated revenues and net income
- Your funding requirements
- Company description and business model
- Value proposition-financial
- Value proposition—social or environmental
- Current Status
- Current or committed funding and all funding sources
- Why is this such a great idea?
- Describe and define the problem
- Competitive Analysis (analysis of the current competition and assessment of why the problem is not being solved by competitors)
- Identification of the Customer(s)
- Industry analysis and forecast (Comparative Analysis, find a company in a similar space or with similar market; and compare their growth rated, etc. to your model)
- Market size, analysis and forecast
- Founders and key management
- Industry experience; Educational backgrounds
- Board of advisors (critical to the assessment of the overall viability; can develop the team's experience if needed)
- Optional: Board of directors (3 required by law, usually not until first round of institutional funding is in place)
- Outline overall financial model with detail projections through year three including directed cash flow and budget analysis. (Use the RISE tool to help you.)
- Other analysis, as appropriate (e.g., break even analysis)
- Discuss assumptions and capital requirements
Good example is Global Social Venture Competition
You must discuss, how you are addressing most of the following areas, but your plan does not need to excel in all of the areas to be considered.
- Community economic development
- Community involvement
- Environmental practices
- Hiring and workplace practices
- Sourcing/Supply Chain
Explain how you will use the funding to support/start this business venture and sustain it beyond the initial funding.