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14 Replies Latest reply: Apr 5, 2012 3:19 PM by Erik Salmon RSS

Sources for financial assistance

Bonerks Newbie
Currently Being Moderated

Hello,

 

I am a newbie - This site was recommended to me by a friend. I have registered and started a Concierge company in a very stable and popular Caribbean island.

 

I decided to start my business because the company I previously worked for closed and this is the perfect opportunity to be my own boss. Having researched the market, the potential is amazing for this business to be a viable full-time entity.

 

The few venture capital firms on the island are interested in companies with export/foreign exchange earning potential and the banks want collateral that I do not currently have.

 

I need funds to get a reliable vehicle and some professional marketing going.

 

Other than "crowd funding" which has also been suggested and which is my next step after I complete this post, can anyone suggest someone private or otherwise to whom I can pitch my business plan if only to start on the vehicle? ( Please bear my location in mind)

 

I  can give more details of the progress I have made thus far with my own funding, as needed. The expertise, goal planning, drive, tenacity and confidence is there - just need some capital anda great mentor.

 

Thank you for any tips you can offer.

  • Re: Sources for financial assistance
    Kat Novice
    Currently Being Moderated

    I have a virtual assistant business and one of my services I offer is personal assistance. I would love to learn more about also starting a concierge home-based business. Since you have inside experience working for a concierge company, can you give me some pointers on starting such a business and where I might be able to research more about it, i.e. experience needed, starting costs, rates to charge client, any special software, equipment? I live in the US.

    • Re: Sources for financial assistance
      Bonerks Newbie
      Currently Being Moderated

      Hi Kat,

       

      I don't work for a concierge company but I am the owner of a new one.  My concierge business offers the same - personal assistance and vitual assistance, therefore I'm not sure I can offer more than you may already know/do.

       

      Are you hoping to expand your services?

       

      Feel free to email me directly however and we can at the very least compare war stories and exchange tips.

       

      Thanks!

      • Re: Sources for financial assistance
        Kat Novice
        Currently Being Moderated

        Hello,

         

        Thanks for replying back. I am looking to expand in the area of supporting solo attorneys, real estate attorneys nationwide, and eventually an errand service in the area where I live.

        • Re: Sources for financial assistance
          Bonerks Newbie
          Currently Being Moderated

          Hi Kat,

           

          I currently offer administrative support to a paralegal and attorney- mostly research, monitoring of email traffic and updating their websites. We probably do the same thing in that respect.

           

          I have not ventured into errand services as there is not a viable market here for this service ( volume/profitablilty issues).

           

          I'm sorry that I haven't been more helpful. There is a ton of great advice and very helpful people I might add on this site so maybe posting your own query to other US based Concierges who offer the services that you don't may be more fruitful?

           

          Warm Regards,

          B

  • Re: Sources for financial assistance
    CEO Space Apprentice
    Currently Being Moderated

    I believe that business funding is the BIGGEST resource needed and most often asked question for most new business people.

     

    There are some major points where most new businesses fall short in starting to get funding, one is a thorough business plan and the other is a team.  Another point that is almost unknown about is how to get business credit when you are a brand new business.

     

    Also, most new businesses don't know that rarely does capital funding from people who do not know you personally happen unless you have already started or have one of those one in a million great ideas.

     

    It is definitely a process but there are avenues that can speed that process up enormously, much too much for me to go over here.

     

    In nut shell, have a great realistic business plan, make sure you have all major components covered with a team member as a consultant or employee, like legal, marketing, customer service, etc.  Get your business credit going the correct way and start building business credit, then get in front of our panel at one of our yearly events to see what holes there may be and the possibility of further funding from there.

  • Re: Sources for financial assistance
    Erik Salmon Apprentice
    Currently Being Moderated

    I would also add to CEO Space's comments, watch out for business credit building scams. Building credit in a business works essentially the same with one big difference, the ability to obtain larger credit limits.

     

    You will also hear a lot about D&B. To be honest bankers really do not care about a Dun's rating. They will look at how much money you have personally invested, your business plan, personal credit, personal and business tax returns and may also pull a business credit report form Experian or Equifax.

     

    If your a firm that has less than $1 million in annual revenues and you are looking to obtain a bank loan, be prepared for it to take about 7 business days of working on the loan process with at least 2 banks and then your odds of being approved are about 47% based on the latest studies.

     

    Now I am talking about US companies and I am sure it works similarly in the Caribbean.

    • Re: Sources for financial assistance
      CEO Space Apprentice
      Currently Being Moderated

      I hadn't thought of being aware of business credit scammers but like all things that are highly sought after, I should've known it could be fertile ground for scammers.

       

      To my knowledge, there are only 2 very reputable companies that actually know all the ins and outs of REAL business credit and outside of an introduction, one would be impossible to find as they don't advertise anywhere and the other one is difficult to find because even though they have a website, they are mostly word of mouth, too.

       

      After I read your post, Erik, I Googled "business credit" and "how to get business credit" and so I see what you mean.

       

      This is another one of the sad things about the internet....there is so much information out there on everything, it is hard to know the real gold from the fool's gold.

       

      The 2 people I know who do this are highly reputable and really know their stuff.  One of them and their spouse are rather famous in their other professions and only help referrals of people they know, screen them thoroughly and charge them $25000.00 but guarantee to build their credit to above $1 million and show them exactly the companies to use to have the best affect and get the best results.

       

      The other was an associate of the first and eventually did this and learned enough of the "insider" secrets to offer it to others.  They offer almost the same thing but to keep the cost down, it is all in the form of education and you do it yourself.  They also guarantee their results but it costs $2500.00.  However, in their program, once you have other things in place and build the credit, you also can be part of the panel where you get to present your idea to their group of Angel investors (Which is growing every year.)  So it is pretty cool for those who qualify.

       

      Of course, at this time, this is just for businesses owned and operated in the U.S.

       

      I have had a couple friends go through the program so I got to see from experience the benefits of operating your business with it's own credit and freeing up your personal credit for just personal things.

       

      As for the comment earlier about your D & B rating not mattering, well, that depends on the lender and also if you are trying to get funds WITHOUT having to use a personal guarantee.  As I already stated, I know this is a fact because I have 2 friends who have gone through the program. 

       

      One of them got so much business credit and freed up so much personal credit, that not only did he expand his business exponentially, but due to the freed up personal credit and business expansion, he purchased a million dollar home on 25 acres, with a lake, a pool, a stable and a huge guest house.

      • Re: Sources for financial assistance
        Erik Salmon Apprentice
        Currently Being Moderated

        When I am referring to D&B not mattering I am referring to banks for traditional funding, the business credit scammers use D&B as the holy grail for building business credit and really D&B is primarily good for building credit with vendors and suppliers. A bank that is looking at giving a company $100,000+ loan is not going to base underwriting on D&B due to how D&B credit reports can be manipulated by going after easy to qualify for vendor credit and paying on time or even early. No to mention a company can buy their credit score from D&B with their own credit building service.

         

        Not to say that your friends are scammers because I do not know who you are referring to and am not familiar with their credit program, but I have been in the business credit industry for over a decade, consulted with over 10K firms, have participated in investigating business credit programs and have yet to find a legitimate business credit program that offers what your friends offer. Once you understand how underwriting works and what the lending criteria are for financing at that level, when you hear that all you have to do is pay someone $25K and your company can obtain $1 million or more in funding, red flags should be going up and a deeper investigation needs to be done.

         

        Yes business credit scam's are every were. There is guy offering something similar to what your friends do and he is trying to pass himself off as the CEO of our company and we are currently working on getting him shut down. The funny thing is that we only offer business credit & finance education and not any type of building program.

         

        To be quite honest if a firm has to pay someone 25K to obtain funding then they probably have no business getting any type of financing because they just do not know how business credit and finance works which will most likely cause the business to fail rather than succeed.

         

        Business credit should never be the goal of any business, the business of the company and profitability should. Credit is just a tool to help create and manage cash flow. As a company becomes more and more profitable then they should rely less and less on credit. Once a company is profitable they can create sinking funds and self finance from that point forward and will not have to rely on credit for continued development.

        • Re: Sources for financial assistance
          CEO Space Apprentice
          Currently Being Moderated

          Wow!  Thank you for all the valuable clarification.  I am going to email what you posted to one of my friends doing this.  It may help them.

           

          I totally agree that credit, personal or business, should never be a goal or end in itself.  However, having to start and expand several times, it definitely helps to have a line available to get over the humps.

          • Re: Sources for financial assistance
            Moderator Cath Master
            Currently Being Moderated

            So what I think I am reading is: do your homework, don't expect a quick fix, beware of spammers, funding is not easy to find and may take a while to find it if at all, work on building your credit, and perhaps not mentioned but I guess I was reading between the lines: get a mentor.  This is a good place for general mentoring.  You can pick up quite a few great ideas almost every day.  But nothing takes the place of a mentor who is willing to walk you through the deep waters of financial assistance and anything else your business might need.

             

            Good luck with your new company.  Let us know how things are coming along with you as you move farther into the year.

             

            Cath

            • Re: Sources for financial assistance
              Erik Salmon Apprentice
              Currently Being Moderated

              For this person who is in another country, that is the case. For some one starting a business in the states there is much more direction that can be given.

              • Re: Sources for financial assistance
                Moderator Cath Master
                Currently Being Moderated

                My reply is in reference to Bonerks who was inquiring about a concierge company in the Caribbean.  But it would be helpful to business owners in the states to enlarge the discussion to include their businesses, too.  How about it, Erik, would you be interested in making this an all inclusive discussion?  I see you commented, above, would you like to amplify on that or add to it here?

                 

                We all learn from one another and benefit from those who have been around a while.  And anything dealing with finances gets everyone's attention.

                 

                Who will share next?

                 

                Cath

                • Re: Sources for financial assistance
                  Erik Salmon Apprentice
                  Currently Being Moderated

                  Well I have no problem including anyone on any of these discussions. I have posted a ton of information on how to obtain funding on these forums and any one can look up my post and read them.

                   

                  I think you were taking my comment the wrong way, what I was saying is that there is not much about how to obtain funding sources in the Carrabin that we can I can discuss here because I would just be guessing unless someone from that country who knows how financing works in that country or an international banker who deals with that country can speak about obtaining funding in that country there is nothing more that can be said about how someone in another country can obtain funding sources.

  • Re: Sources for financial assistance
    Bonerks Newbie
    Currently Being Moderated

    Thank you everyone for your efforts to assist. Extremely informative. Unfortunately I'm not able to apply any of this other than the good business plan recommendation here.

     

    I do however once again wish to say thanks.

     

    Bonerks

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