Post a new topic
    1 Reply Latest reply on Jun 9, 2011 12:55 PM by BizOptimizer

    Reality check: Want to own business, limited exp., good capital

    perpetuitas Newbie

      Hello all -

       

      Found this stop by way of researching FedEx route opportunities. After browsing around, and, since this is month 7 or 8 of trying to get something going I need a reality check from totally objective sources.

       

      The short of it:

      So I have very little operational experience but tons of life experience and a decent amount of my own capital.

      I don't want to do a startup, mainly because my ideas are all food based and I'd like to mitigate the risk by buying a business that's already running and profitable. I worked very hard to grow this money.

       

      People always say follow your passion. Well I have to be honest, my passion is to have a revenue stream that ideally doesn't involve working for another employer (save possible franchise ops)! I love a lot of things but most of all I love making money because that means security.

       

      Some days I can go into a tailspin ... wondering if anyone will deal with me due to my lack of experience.

       

      Can a guy with a good amount of cash and desire buy a break?

       

      thanks for any encouragement! see below for my background and efforts thus far.

       

      Robert

       

       

      Background:

      I have been in the web/multimedia design and development business for over 15 years. I started with a partner after we completed one 125k project together. We went on our own after landing another decent project but the relationship didn't flourish and we split after about a year. I went to work as an in-house web strategist and designer for a small, private liberal arts college. Before this I was completing two fine art degrees, teaching, and doing freelance design and production work. Before this I was in the Army where I was a kitchen manager, planning menus, working a budget, and being the supply guy with truck driving and basically doing a P&D route 6 times a month to feed about 250 people for three meals a day.

       

      I feel my experiences of putting myself through two college degrees with very little debt, managing freelance work, managing decent budget projects with my own business, and having managed to save enough capital to buy a sizable business works in my favor.

       

       

      So I have very little operational experience but tons of life experience and a decent amount of my own capital.

      I don't want to do a startup, mainly because my ideas are all food based. I worked very hard to save this money and would rather buy something already running.

       

      Thus far I have talked to:

      • a storage container rental place (deal fell through after another buyer got serious before me)
      • a small importer and seller of scandinavian food stuffs with a mail order business, she keeps a storefront but it's always empty when i go by, and, while it's attractive since she works 4 days a week, I can't see myself in that space every day!
      • a coffee shop owner now absentee. it needs a turn around and revenue increase. it just pays for itself, a full time manager (that'd be me), and a few part timers. the risk is bigger here. it includes the real estate at a pretty attractive price. To make any money I'd need to fire the manager, and, work on increasing sales at the same time. Or, I could take the part timer's positions.
      • a wholesale candy distributor with at least 50 accounts. he is solo, drives ~4k per month! clears a decent amount.
      • a laundromat which makes money but involves someone sitting to take dry cleaning and wash/fold drop offs! I was hoping for just coin-op here. Price is cheap however at 49k but revenue is only about the same.
        • Reality check: Want to own business, limited exp., good capital
          BizOptimizer Adventurer

          If you have a good broker, they should be able to advise you of the risk/rewards available.  But, business ownership is much like having a baby - NO ONE can tell you what it is going to be like before you experience your first.  It has far bigger and more frequent highs and lows - need to be ready to ride.

           

          I had computer experience and many suggested I couldn't do it also - and here it is almost 10 years later.  There are MANY MANY businesses for sale out there with many different levels of risk and many different levels of reality to the books.  Get with someone who can guide you through all that and take your best shot if that is what you want to do.

           

          But be aware - especially if you are doing this on your own.  What the books say is not always reality.  I've seen those that thought they were getting into a profitiable venture only to find the REAL revenues didn't cover even the basic expenses and came in at less than 1/2 of what was stated.

           

          A good plan, and good due dilligence on what you buy is key.  Pulling the trigger the first time is hard - lost a few good ones along my education path also.  But know you are getting educated along the way.

           

          Good luck

          1 of 1 people found this helpful