Primary Member/Manager, Rex Design Concepts, LLC
Inventor, Living Ledge – http://www.livingledge.com/
Has a patent on a suction cup surface mounted shelf and planter assembly. Idea came to her in a dream — and she went ahead and built it!
Disadvantages of owning a small business:
- Financial Risk
- Lack of Steady Income
- Time Investment – Long Hours
- Devil’s in the Details
- Unpleasant Tasks
Advantages of owning a small business:
- Independence and Unlimited freedom in business practices
- Broader Role in Business
- Rewards Tied to Performance – Unlimited Income Potential
- Assistance is available for Small Business Owners
- Are you Motivated? Goal-Oriented/Focused? Confident, Passionate, Budget-Savvy?
- Don’t be afraid to ask for help
- Continue to educate yourself and try to find mentors
Are you ready for that moment when you have a gap in your paychecks?
Evaluation of your Business goals is the roadmap you will follow as you build your business. Think about things like Staffing, Marketing, Financial, Tech/Equip, Customers, Strategic Positioning, Alliances, Daily Operations.
If someone tells you that you can’t do something, you have to figure out a way. That’s what you do in your own business — figure out a way.
Assessing Financial Needs — examine your market: Is your market on the decline, stable, or growing? What do you need to grow your business?
We don’t have a ton of time on this earth, might as well do something you love and might as well put yourself out there!
Busines Solutions Advisor, SEFCU – https://www.sefcu.com/
Will most likely need funding — SEFCU usually likes to see businesses with history and some cash to invest themselves.
Usually at least two years of experience and business history and look for usually 20% of the capital required to be provided by the business owner themselves.
Personal credit really helps, know what your credit looks like and the better credit you have the more favorable you will be for a commercial or business loan.
Be honest with your accountant, be honest with your attorney and be honest with your bank — these are your partners.
Also know what your collateral looks like. Tangible Assets and Intangible Assets both count. Things like Equipment, buildings, inventory, accounts receivable, personal assets, copyrighted ideas, patents, intellectual property.
When you’re going to go for lending, it’s important to know where your credit score is. You can pull it every 3 or 6 months. The more often you request it, the more it will go down.
Look for a bank that is willing to work with you and help you get lending, no doesn’t mean no, it just means not right now. Work with a bank that will help you get things in line so that you can get lending.
Financial Analyst, Binghamton Local Development Corporation – http://www.binghamton-ny.gov/
BLDC is a public benefit corp created to support the development of local economic develop in the greater Binghamton, NY area.
Here to promote employment and foster entrepreneurship and innovation. They are putting a lot of their focus on this, including the business plan competition and workshops like this one.
90% of small business failures can be traced to poor management, lack of planning, and inadequate financing – Dun & Bradstreet 2011
Really pushing to think local and buy local and support local. Can really build up the local economy to focus on using local institutions to support local businesses.
Common misconceptions of what you need to start a business:
- You need to have a business background
- There is no job security in owning your own business
- In order to start a business you need to have a lot of money
There are a lot of sustainable education resources such as:
Small Business Development Center – http://www.binghamton.edu/sbdc/
Entrepreneurial Assistance Program – http://www2.binghamton.edu/eap/
On-line Social Media Marketing Campaign – http://binghamtonlinked.blogspot.com/
Greater Binghamton Chamber of Commerce – http://www.greaterbinghamtonchamber.com/
Sustainable Financial Resources:
SBA Loan Programs (504 loans and 7a loans) – http://www.sba.gov/loanprograms
New York State Directory of Small Business Programs – http://www.esd.ny.gov/SmallBusiness/Data/NYSDirectorySmallBusinessProgram.pdf
Broome County IDA – http://www.bcida.com/
The Greater Binghamton Innovation Center – http://binghamtoninnovation.com/
BLDC & City of Binghamton – http://www.binghamton-ny.gov/
If you’re looking to apply for some sort of financial help through the city of Binghamton, NY, they will need to see:
Business plan, three years financial projections, primary lender commitment, demonstrate equity investment (10% minimum), completed application, and application fee.
Types of loan programs through the BLDC:
Mirco Enterprise Loan: For things like inventory, working capital, renovations and leasehold improvements. Loan amount: $24,000 at 4% rate.
Revolving Fund Loan: For Acquisition, machinery, equip, construction, renovation, etc. Loan amount is 40% of total project costs up to $250k.
Also have commercial fascade and special projects loans available.
City Planner, City of Binghamton – http://www.binghamton-ny.gov/
Have to check the zoning and see if you need special use permits or site plan alterations so that you can get started with your business at that location.
CAUD can help you if you are looking at a building that is a local landmark or is in the historical district. They have design experience and help guide you through the process so that project is consistent with city’s guidelines.