How to Write a Business Plan for Raising Venture Capital

Written by Dave Lavinsky

Head with three gears looking a line with four dots leading to a bag of money

Are you looking for VC funding or funding from other potential investors?

You need a good business idea – and an excellent business plan.

Business planning and raising capital go hand-in-hand. An investor business plan is required for attracting a venture capital firm. And the desire to raise capital (whether from an individual “angel” investor or a venture capitalist) is often the key motivator in the business planning process.  

Writing an Investor-Ready Business Plan

Executive summary.

Goal of the executive summary: Stimulate and motivate the investor to learn more.

Company Analysis

Goal of the company analysis section: Educate the investor about your company’s history and explain why your team is perfect to execute on the business opportunity.

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Industry Analysis

Goal of the industry analysis section: Prove that there is a real market for your product or service.

Customer Analysis

Goal of customer analysis section: Convey the needs of your potential customers and show how your company’s products and services satisfy those needs.

Competitive Analysis

Goal of the competitive analysis section: Define the competition and demonstrate your competitive advantage.

Finish Your Investor Business Plan in 1 Day!

And know it’s in the exact format that venture capitalists want?

Marketing Plan

Goal of the marketing plan: Describe how your company will penetrate the market, deliver products/services, and retain customers.

Operations Plan

Goal of the operations plan: Present the action plan for executing your company’s vision.

Financial Plan

Goal of the financial plan: Explain how your business will generate returns for your investors.

Above all, the business plan is a marketing document that helps to sell the investor on the business opportunity, the team, the strategy, and the potential for significant return on investment.

Raising venture capital is a difficult and time-intensive challenge. There is no easy shortcut or silver bullet. However, you can greatly improve your chances of raising venture capital by writing a business plan that speaks directly to the investor’s perspective.  

Raising Venture Capital FAQs

What is the purpose of a business plan for raising venture capital.

The purpose of writing a business plan for raising venture capital is to convince investors that the proposed new or existing company has a good chance of being successful and can earn them a favorable return on investment (ROI).

What Does VC Funding Entail?

VC funding is a type of financial transaction in which the venture capital firm invests in startup companies or early-stage companies. The firm invests its own capital (which it receives from other entities that invest in the VC firm) in these nascent companies with the goal of rapidly expanding them. Generally, early-stage companies use bootstrapping, self-funding, bank loans, and/or angel investment before raising their first round of venture capital. Companies might receive several rounds of VC funding.

What is a Typical Amount of Capital to Raise?

Typically, the first round (Series A) of venture capital amounts to $2-10 million. To raise that amount from VCs at the very start of your company is often very difficult. Rather, you should consider approaching angel investors and banks to provide initial financing to get you to the point at which venture capitalists are interested in providing funding. Gaining customer traction is generally the point in which VCs are ready to provide Series A financing. VCs will provide Series B funding, Series C funding, etc. to help continue to fund a company’s growth if the company seems poised for success. These funding rounds are usually much larger than Series A rounds.

How Long Does It Take For Investors To Decide If My Business Is Worth Investing In?

It varies from investor to investor, but prepare yourself to wait up to three months before receiving a check from a VC. The process typically includes sending the VC a teaser email to get their interest, following up with a business plan, giving a pitch presentation, and negotiating the terms of the funding round.

How Do I Find Venture Capitalists?

There are many venture capital firms and virtually all of them have websites and are thus fairly easy to find. There are also directories of them available on the internet. You may also be able to find VCs through personal introductions or by attending industry events. 

Look for VCs that have funded companies in your industry/sector, at your stage of development and in your geographical area.

What Capital Raising Options are Available For a Business?

There are four broad options for raising money or venture capital when you run a business. These include venture capital firms, angel investors, loans and venture debt, or bootstrapping.

Venture Capitalists

A Venture Capitalist is an investor that provides equity financing for companies that have already achieved some traction but lack the financial resources to scale up their operations. Their investment objective is typically to grow the company so it can be sold or go public at a later date so the VC can exit or cash in on their success.

Angel Investors

Angel investors are wealthy individuals who invest their own money into startup companies because they believe they will get an above-average return on their investment. They also invest if/when they like the entrepreneurs and/or management team, they are passionate about the concept, or if they’d like to get involved in an exciting new venture.

Loans and Venture Debt

Business loans or venture debt is money given to a company in return for interest and principal payments over time, but without the investor taking an ownership stake in the company. Such funding is typically issued by local banks. Debt funding is typically less expensive than equity financing, but it is much harder for early-stage companies to raise significant amounts of debt capital.


Bootstrapping is the process of a startup company funding its own growth from internal sources such as the founder's savings, loans from friends and family, or credit card debt.

Firms that are bootstrapped can grow at a more controlled rate while they achieve product-market fit before an angel investor or venture capital firm injects their money to scale up the company.

Bootstrapping is best for companies with low capital needs because there’s only so much you can raise in this manner. If you need millions of dollars, bootstrapping just won’t work and you’ll need to tap venture capital.

How exactly will your small business persuade these potential investors to sign a check? Once you know what type of capital you are trying to raise, you can develop business plans to suit their exact requirements.

Need help with your business plan?

Speak with one of our professional business plan consultants or contact our private placement memorandum experts.

Or, if you’re developing your own PPM, consider using Growthink’s new private placement memorandum template .

Other Helpful Funding & Business Plan Articles

The Ultimate Guide to Angel Investors

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Business Plan For Venture Capital

What is venture capital funding.

Business Plan For Venture Capital

How Does Venture Capital Work?


sample business plan for venture capital funding

sample business plan for venture capital funding

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Venture Capital Proposal Template

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Reviewed by Dmitry Ivanouski

Prepared for: [Client.FirstName] [Client.LastName] [Client.Company]

Prepared by: [Sender.FirstName] [Sender.LastName] [Sender.Company]

This title should be as concise as possible, but still descriptive enough to get across exactly what it is that your business does. It’s very important that any potential investor can quickly see whether your proposal could be of interest to them, otherwise, they may not bother to read any further.

Try to keep it to around 50 characters or fewer.

Short Description of Business

Investment Summary

[Sender.Company] is a cutting-edge business offering services to target market. We are writing to you to seek a $investment amount angel investment from your company. We will use these funds in order to expand our operations and specifically grow our areas of investment department(s).

Based on our comprehensive forecasting, we expect you to see an ROI of percentage ROI in just ROI period months, making this an excellent business opportunity to invest in a highly profitable field.

Investment Description

Our short description of business was started to address a demand for services offered in the marketplace. We began operating in date of founding, and have since steadily grown to where we are today indicator of growth.

We understand that we operate in what can be a competitive field, so aim to outcompete similar businesses by offering the following services: Unique Selling Point(s).

This makes us unique in the industry and gives us a strong competitive advantage.

Expected Returns

We expect that your investment of $ investment amount will result in an ROI percentage over ROI Period months. We aim to achieve this via investment of capital to the following areas of the business:

Area(s) of investment

To add to this, our business model can be scaled over. This will, in turn, produce a forecasted growth percentage growth in revenues.

Exit Strategy

This section is a chance to give the venture capital firm a way out somewhere down the line, which they will see as a way to mitigate risk. You can include things like plans to take the firm public in a given timeframe, and how the investor’s share is forecasted to be worth significantly more than it if they buy now. It’s something that can set your venture capital proposal template apart from others.

Here, you should provide the contact information of any accountants and finance professionals you have used as part of your business planning. This can greatly help to legitimize the growth forecasts you’ve quoted in your proposal and increase the chance of securing investment.

We genuinely believe that [Sender.Company] has huge potential in the industry. Our team has proven expertise, including relevant experience. To add to this, our unique approach makes [Sender.Company] a powerful force in the marketplace.

With our demonstrated success, as well as our predicted future growth, we are offering you a valuable investment opportunity.

If you’re interested in learning more about [Sender.Company] , please don’t hesitate to get in touch. We have a full business plan available upon request that details our current standing, future plans and forecasting data to demonstrate the value we can bring to you.

Contact Details


This contract cannot undergo any alterations by either Party, except for when submitted in writing and agreed on by both the Parties.

Relevant Laws

How to Write a Business Plan for Funding

Guide to writing a business plan to get funding.

When you start your own company, you’re in for a marathon rather than a sprint. You’ll hit tons of milestones—some of which are more challenging than others. Writing a business plan for funding, be it for a business loan or an investor, can seem like one of the more daunting tasks for an entrepreneur. This is especially true if you’re doing it for the first time (or if you don’t consider yourself to be much of a wordsmith).

But writing a business plan for funding your company appears to be scarier than it really is. In fact, the typical funding request in a business plan follows a fairly boilerplate format. Your would-be business funders want to see specific details about your business (or, if you’re just starting up, what you expect your business to be). So long as you cover these details, know your financials by heart, and can write convincingly about why your business plan and funding requirements make sense, you can take this challenge on without breaking a sweat.

Why Do You Need a Business Plan for Funding Your Company?

The rationale behind drafting a business plan for funding a business is simple: Would-be investors and lenders want to know what they are getting themselves into. Just as you would want to know the specifics of a mutual fund or stock portfolio before you put down money, your investors and creditors want to know if funding your business is a sound idea.

It’s not easy for early investors or lenders to measure a company’s performance. There isn’t a ton of financial history available about new businesses, which means that you have to provide much more information about your vision and projected revenue to help them get a full view of what you’re doing. Plus, some loans require a business loan proposal with your application—such as SBA 7(a) and SBA 504/CDC loans.

So long as you know why you’re creating a business plan for funding, whether that means investments or loans, you can ensure that your would-be investors have all the details they need. Here’s an overview of why you need a business plan for funding your company successfully.

1. To Help Investors Know About Your Business

Before any investor makes the plunge to help you fund your business , they will want to know what it is that your company does. Sounds simple enough, right? Your business plan for funding serves as an official introduction to your company and builds upon any prior conversations you’ve had about what it does.

2. To Share Your Business Objectives and Goals

Investors will want to know what your goals are for your company once they understand exactly what it does. You’ve already addressed what your business is—now you need to explain your vision.

3. To Explain Your Current Financials and Future Projections

Once you’ve explained your vision for the company, you’ll need to dive into the financial details of how you plan to make it happen. You need to provide investors with a complete glimpse into your financial situation in order to make a compelling case for your business.

4. To Persuade Investors to Help Fund Your Business

The numbers tend to do the talking in a business plan for funding opportunities, but that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t create a compelling case for why you want an investment through other means. A persuasive argument complements robust financials, and a business plan for funding allows you to make your case.

What Should You Include When Writing a Business Plan for Funding?

Now that you know why a business plan for funding is essential, the next step in the process is knowing what you need to cover. Thankfully, the topics covered in your business plan for funding are pretty boilerplate. Investors know what to expect from the typical business plan—so long as you cover them satisfactorily, you’ll provide all the standard details one might want to know about your company. Here are the core components of a successful business plan for funding.

1. An Executive Summary

The executive summary should cover the essential information about your business: what it does, who it serves, and what you’re looking for from the people who read it. A strong executive summary hits upon the problem your company solves, your target market, competitors in the space, and a brief section on your colleagues.

Tailor your executive summary toward investors if you’re writing a business plan for funding. Make sure that it provides the valuable financial information and value proposition behind investing in your company. Sometimes it’s easier to write the executive summary last, as you’ll have an easier time summarizing the other topics you’ve covered in detail elsewhere.

2. Your Business Opportunity

Your executive summary covered the basics behind what your company does, but the opportunity section dives deeper into what sets your company apart and makes it a particularly worthy investment.

Here, you’ll want to get into the nitty-gritty about your product or service, the target market, and how you differentiate your business from your competitors. Show your potential investors why you deserve their money, and back it up with data. The best way to do this is by detailing market share insights within your business plan. For example, discuss the following:

Next, you’ll need to cover your key customers—the people within the share of market category. These are the people you intend to target the most. Feel free to go into detail on who they are (as a group, not individually of course), why you’ve selected them, and how they align with leading influencers in your industry.

3. Your Company’s Current Financials

Now that you’ve provided an overview of the potential market for your goods or services, you’ll want to dive into your company’s financials. Don’t be shy on details for this section—your investors need to have a full picture of your company’s current performance, as well as your future revenue projections.

If you’re just getting your company off the ground and don’t have revenue to show yet, be sure to include detailed income and expense projections instead. The more information you can provide about your company, the better your odds are at getting funded.

4. Your Current (and Future) Loan Requirements

This section should include your current funding request, as well as any anticipated funding requirement in the foreseeable future. Be candid and upfront about why you’re requesting a loan or investment in your company, outlining precisely what you expect your needs to be based on your bookkeeping and financial forecasting.

5. A Description of How You’ll Use the Funds

Creditors and investors won’t just want to know how much money you need. They’ll also expect to know what you intend to do with the money they give you. After all, it’s in their best interest to understand how you plan to spend these funds—this can help lenders and investors determine if your plans are sound and can yield the best chance of repayment possible.

6. Your Current (or Future) Loan Repayment Plans

Your prospective lenders and investors need to know about any outstanding investments in your company, or loans you’ve already taken out. And if you’re starting out with neither of those two, you’ll need to provide this information to give your funders a full sense of your business financials.

An outline of your current and expected loan repayment plans gives these groups a better understanding of how you intend to pay them back. A strong repayment plan is an essential part of a successful business plan for funding. The more convincing your plan, the less risky your business appears.

7. A Brief Description of Your Team

Creditors and investors don’t just want to know the financial ins and outs of your business. They want to know more about the people within your company itself, too. This is particularly true if members of your organization come with a distinguished background. Anything you can boast about with regards to personnel could help woo investors.

If your loan application requires a business plan, you’ll have to do more than just provide team member bios. Get ready to spill the details on your own financial history (and that of any co-signer on the loan), as creditors want to know if you have a personal history of solvency and debt repayment.

8. An Appendix (If Necessary)

Your appendix is the ideal place for any information or graphics that don’t quite flow with the rest of your proposal. Say, for example, that you want to include more details about your revenue projection. Putting this information in the main text of your proposal could shift focus away from the essential details about your request. Place these materials at the end of the proposal document, and opt for an in-text citation for these materials instead.

How a Business Plan for Funding Differs Between Investors and Lenders

A business plan for funding through loans looks different than a proposal that you’d present to prospective investors. Lenders are interested in your business plan, surely, but their primary concern is your company’s financial outlook, as well as when and how you intend to pay back your loan.

If you’re drafting a plan for lenders, make sure you include the following:

Note that each lender may ask for some of these materials, and others may ask for even more than what’s listed here. Be sure to ask before submitting your application to forestall any delays during the loan review process.

How to Write Your Best Business Plan for Funding

We’ve sorted out why you need a business plan for funding through loans and investors, as well as what to include. But actually writing the proposal can be a challenging task in its own right. There are plenty of approaches you can take to the text to make it fit your style, but these essential tips work across the board with nearly every business plan.

1. Keep It Brief

When writing your business plan for funding, use easily understood language, small sentences and paragraphs, and do not assume that your audience knows your business as well as you do. This is not the place to impress your would-be funders through sesquipedalian loquaciousness (i.e. using a lot of big words when a few small words do the trick).

2. Keep It Customized

Writing to your audience isn’t just a matter of using succinct language. Persuasive language also requires you to customize your business plan for different kinds of investors and lenders. An investment proposition is a different animal than a business plan for funding through a loan. Know what your potential funder is looking for within the opportunity you present, and cater to them.

3. Keep Your Chin Up

Most entrepreneurs will say that confidence is key. When you believe in yourself and your business, you stand a better chance of getting others to believe as well. Your business plan should exude confidence in your company’s present and future (but not cockiness, of course). Convince the funder that you , as well as your business, are worth the investment.

Getting funding requires a good bit of work, patience, and perseverance. But the best thing any small business owner can do is to know the ins and outs of their company, as well as the standard requirements of a business plan. By covering all of the major details, writing to your audience in a persuasive manner, and demonstrating the strengths of your company, you can make the process a much smoother one. And in the end, you’ll find that this mile marker on your small business journey feels a bit easier to hit than it seemed in the beginning.

Meredith Wood

Meredith Wood

Meredith Wood is the founding editor of the Fundera Ledger and a GM at NerdWallet.

Meredith launched the Fundera Ledger in 2014. She has specialized in financial advice for small business owners for almost a decade. Meredith is frequently sought out for her expertise in small business lending and financial management.

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Blog Business

15+ Business Plan Examples to Win Your Next Round of Funding

By Jennifer Gaskin , Jun 09, 2021

15+ Business Plan Examples to Win Your Next Round of Funding Blog Header

“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail,” according to words of wisdom dubiously attributed to Benjamin Franklin. While there’s no solid evidence that Franklin actually coined this phrase, the sentiment rings true for any business.

Not having a solid plan makes it unlikely you’ll achieve the goals you seek, whether the goals are getting your to-do list done or launching a successful organization.

In the early stages of a company, that means developing things like pitch decks, business plans, one-sheeters and more. With Venngage’s Business Plan Builder , you can easily organize your business plan into a visually appealing format that can help you win over investors, lenders or partners.

Learn more about  how to create a business plan  so you can hit the ground running after reading through this list for inspirational examples of business plans.


Click to jump ahead:

Simple business plan example, startup business plan example, small business plan example, nonprofit business plan example, strategic business plan example, market analysis business plan example, sales business plan example, organization and management business plan example, marketing and sales strategy business plan example, apple business plan example, airbnb business plan example, sequoia capital business plan example.

While your business plan should be supported by thorough and exhaustive research into your market and competitors, the resulting document does not have to be overwhelming for the reader. In fact, if you can boil your business plan down to a few key pages, all the better.

business plan example


The simple, bold visual aesthetic of this  business plan template  pairs well with the straightforward approach to the content and various elements of the business plan itself.

Use Venngage’s My Brand Kit  to automatically add your brand colors and fonts to your business plan with just a few clicks.

Return to Table of Contents

For a typical startup, the need to appear disruptive in the industry is important. After all, if you’re not offering anything truly new, why would an investor turn their attention toward your organization. That means establishing a problem and the ways in which you solve it right away.

business plan example


Whether it’s a full-scale business plan or, in this case, a pitch deck, the ideal way for a startup to make a splash with its plans is to be bold. This successful business plan example is memorable and aspirational.

In the Venngage editor, you can upload images of your business. Add these images to your plans and reports to make them uniquely your own.

All businesses start out small at first, but that doesn’t mean their communications have to be small. One of the best ways to get investors, lenders and talent on board is to show that you’ve done your due diligence.

business plan example

In this small business plan example, the content is spread over many pages, which is useful in making lengthy, in-depth research feel less like a chore than packing everyone on as few pages as possible.

Organizations that set out to solve problems rather than earning profits also benefit from creating compelling business plans that stir an emotional response in potential donors, benefactors, potential staff members or even media.

business plan example


Simplicity is the goal for nonprofits when it comes to business plans, particularly in their early days. Explain the crisis at hand and exactly how your organization will make a difference, which will help donors visualize how their money will be used to help.

Business plans are also helpful for companies that have been around for a while. Whether they’re considering new products to launch or looking for new opportunities, companies can approach business plans from the strategy side of the equation as well.

business plan example

Strategic business plans or strategy infographics should be highly focused on a single area or problem to be solved rather than taking a holistic approach to the entire business. Expanding scope too much can make a strategy seem too difficult to implement.

Easily share your business plan with Venngage’s multiple download options, including PNG, PNG HD, and as an interactive PDF.

One-page business plan example

For organizations with a simple business model, often a one-page business plan is all that’s needed. This is possible in any industry, but the most common are traditional ones like retail, where few complex concepts need to be explained.

business plan example

This one-page strategic business plan example could be easily replicated for an organization that offers goods or services across multiple channels or one with three core business areas. It’s a good business plan example for companies whose plans can be easily boiled down to a few bullet points per area.

Especially when entering a saturated market, understanding the landscape and players is crucial to understanding how your organization can fit it—and stand out. That’s why centering your business plan around a market analysis is often a good idea.

business plan example

In this example, the majority of the content and about half the pages are focused on the market analysis, including competitors, trends, pricing, demographics and more. This successful business plan example ensures the artwork and style used perfectly matches the company’s aesthetic, which further reinforces its position in the market.

You can find more memorable business plan templates to customize in the Venngage editor. Browse Venngage’s  business plan templates  to find plans that work for you and start editing.

Company description business plan example

Depending on the market, focusing on your company story and what makes you different can drive your narrative home with potential investors. By focusing your business plan on a company description, you center yourself and your organization in the minds of your audience.

business plan example

This abbreviated plan is a good business plan example. It uses most of the content to tell the organization’s story. In addition to background about the company, potential investors or clients can see how this design firm’s process is different from their rivals.

With Venngage Business , you can collaborate with team members in real-time to create a business plan that will be effective when presenting to investors.

Five-year business plan example

For most startups or young companies, showing potential investors or partners exactly how and when the company will become profitable is a key aspect of presenting a business plan. Whether it’s woven into a larger presentation or stands alone, you should be sure to include your five-year business plan so investors know you’re looking far beyond the present.

business plan example


With Venngage’s Business Plan Builder , you can customize a schedule like this to quickly illustrate for investors or partners what your revenue targets are for the first three to five years your company is in operation.

The lifeblood of any company is the sales team. These are the energetic folks who bring in new business, develop leads and turn prospects into customers. Focusing your energy on creating a sales business plan would prove to investors that you understand what will make your company money.

business plan example

In this example sales business plan, several facets of ideal buyers are detailed. These include a perfect customer profile that helps to convey to your audience that customer relationships will be at the heart of your operation.

You can include business infographics in your plan to visualize your goals. And with Venngage’s gallery of images and icons, you can customize the template to better reflect your business ethos.

Company mergers and shakeups are also major reasons for organizations to require strong business planning. Creating new departments, deciding which staff to retain and charting a course forward can be even more complex than starting a business from scratch.

business plan example

This organization and management business plan focuses on how the company can optimize operations through a few key organizational projects.

Executive summary for business plan example

Executive summaries give your business plan a strong human touch, and they set the tone for what’s to follow. That could mean having your executive leadership team write a personal note or singling out some huge achievements of which you’re particularly proud in a business plan infographic .

business plan example

In this executive summary for a business plan, a brief note is accompanied by a few notable achievements that signal the organization and leadership team’s authority in the industry.

Marketing and sales are two sides of the same coin, and clever companies know how they play off each other. That’s why centering your business plan around your marketing and sales strategy can pay dividends when it comes time to find investors and potential partners.

business plan example

This marketing and sales business plan example is the picture of a sleek, modern aesthetic, which is appropriate across many industries and will speak volumes to numbers-obsesses sales and marketing leaders.

Do business plans really help? Well, here’s some math for you; in 1981, Apple had just gone public and was in the midst of marketing an absolute flop , the Apple III computer.  The company’s market cap, or total estimated market value,  could hit $3 trillion this year.

Did this Apple business plan make the difference? No, it’s not possible to attribute the success of Apple entirely to this business plan from July 1981, but this ancient artifact goes to show that even the most groundbreaking companies need to take an honest stock of their situation.

business plan example

Apple’s 1981 business plan example pdf covers everything from the market landscape for computing to the products that founder Steve Jobs expects to roll out over the next few years, and the advanced analysis contained in the document shows how strategic Jobs and other Apple executives were in those early days.

Inviting strangers to stay in your house for the weekend seemed like a crazy concept before Airbnb became one of the world’s biggest companies. Like all disruptive startups, Airbnb had to create a robust, active system from nothing.

business plan example

As this Airbnb business plan pitch deck example shows, for companies that are introducing entirely new concepts, it’s helpful not to get too into the weeds. Explain the problem simply and boil down the essence of your solution into a few words; in this case, “A web platform where users can rent out their space” perfectly sums up this popular company.

Sequoia Capital is one of the most successful venture capital firms in the world, backing startups that now have a combined stock market value of more than $1 trillion, according to a Forbes analysis .

For young companies and startups that want to play in the big leagues, tailoring your pitch to something that would appeal to a company like Sequoia Capital is a good idea. That’s why the company has a standard business plan format it recommends .

business plan example

Using Sequoia Capital’s business plan example means being simple and clear with your content, like the above deck. Note how no slide contains much copy, and even when all slides appear on the screen at once, the text is legible.

In summary: Use Venngage to design business plans that will impress investors

Not every business plan, pitch deck or one-sheeter will net you billions in investment dollars, but every entrepreneur should be adept at crafting impressive, authoritative and informative business plans.

Whether you use one of the inspirational templates shared here or you want to go old school and mimic Apple’s 1981 business plan, using Venngage’s Business Plan Builder helps you bring your company’s vision to life.

How to Write a Venture Capital Proposal

Last Updated: February 24, 2023 Approved

This article was co-authored by Helena Ronis and by wikiHow staff writer, Jennifer Mueller, JD . Helena Ronis is Co-founder and CEO of AllFactors, a unified web analytics software to drive company's marketing and business growth. She has worked in product and marketing in the tech industry for over 8 years, and studied Digital Marketing & Analytics at the MIT Sloan School of Management Executive Program. wikiHow marks an article as reader-approved once it receives enough positive feedback. In this case, 88% of readers who voted found the article helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This article has been viewed 67,199 times.

While banks are often hesitant to loan significant amounts of money to new companies, a venture capital firm typically is more willing to make a bet based on the future of your business and its long-term potential. With a venture capital deal, business owners sell equity in their business to the venture capital firm in exchange for operating cash. Venture capitalists make money by investing in companies they believe will be profitable in the future, providing a good return on their investment. [1] X Trustworthy Source U.S. Small Business Administration U.S. government agency focused on supporting small businesses Go to source The venture capital process can be lengthy and expensive, and an impressive venture capital proposal is crucial to your success. A strong venture capital proposal shows you've done your research and planning, and have business acumen, focus, and writing ability, as well as an in-depth understanding of your industry. [2] X Research source

Drafting a Formal Business Plan

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Helena Ronis

Helena Ronis

Struggling to figure out who your customers are? Helena Ronis, CEO and Founder of VoxSnap, tells us: "It's all about testing and validating. That's the only way to really know if the market wants what the entrepreneur is planning to build with their idea. It's in the process of testing that the entrepreneur really identifies who the customers are."

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Making an Investment Proposal

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Negotiating a Deal

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Top 10 Venture Capital Pitch Decks

Healy Jones Kruze Consulting

Healy Jones

VP of FP&A

Top 10 VC Pitch Decks, Examples and Templates

A big part of my job at Kruze is to help our clients prepare to raise venture capital. So I’ve seen a lot of venture capital pitch decks recently. As a former VC who also has been an exec at a number of startups that have raised quite a few million in venture financing, I have some strong views on what information VCs want to see. And because Kruze clients raise something like a billion in venture funding annually, I get to see a lot of what works - and what doesn’t. 

Since I’m regularly being asked for a template for a venture pitch deck, I thought that I’d compile the best templates available on the internet that I know about. Again, I’m strongly biased, as I’ve seen many companies successfully raise and some not. These are pitch deck examples that I think are working.

In addition to the example presentations below, I also lay out the standard slides that I’ve seen companies use to successfully raise venture funding. You can scroll down to also see a TechCrunch interview with a Kruze Client, DeepScribe, where the founder and their investor walk you through the deck they used to raise a $30M round. Finally, I’ve added in a dozen+ questions that VCs often ask founders during the pitch (I’ll probably create an entire article around VC questions and answers).

We’ve released our free startup pitch deck course ! It includes 2 free Google Presentation templates that are free to use, and one downloadable financial model template - plus over 8.5 hours describing what VCs look for on every slide in the deck. 

Top 10 venture capital pitch deck templates on the internet right now

Guy Kawasaki’s pitch template -  This is the OG demo pitch deck. Short and sweet. Starting to get a bit long in the tooth, but still the first one to check out because it will highlight how simple and short can be better (don’t make a 30 slide deck!!)

Ycombinator’s slide template -  The actual deck that YC links to (it’s a Google Slide file) has such poor design, I wouldn’t recommend using it. HOWEVER, the order of slides and the topics are 100% on, so it’s worth carefully reading the commentary in the actual post. I like the final slide, as it clearly outlines how much funding is needed and the use of the funds. A solid slide to end the conversation on. 

First Round Capital’s deck -  One of the top, East Coast VCs supposedly had a hand in creating this one, and the slide order/content is one of the best examples of what to put into your deck. I don’t know how you actually download this - it’s in some kind of a proprietary format, but if you are looking for a view on how to order and design a pitch deck, this is one you must check out. 

Series A pitch deck used by Front to raise their A  -   This founder very kindly shared their slides and fund raising experience. Great example of a competition slide in an industry that has a lot of legit competitors. 

Airbnb’s seed deck -  This is a classic (although the visual design did not age well). If you are looking for a consumer deck or one that talks about how to launch into a new(ish) industry, this is worth looking at.

We’ve also put links to five other examples below, like the Uber deck and the Mattermark slides. Scroll down to see more real-life examples, and dig into our commentary on slide order and content strategy. 

Slides in an example pitch deck

The professionals (like YC and Guy Kawasaki) are suggesting 10 slides in a standard pitch deck. I think the real point is that you should be able to deliver your pitch in 15 minutes or less - and if pressed, do a 5-minute pitch. That’s really short.

Why so short? Aren’t most VC meetings scheduled for 30 minutes? Well sure, but… 

Assume that your VC is late to the meeting by 5 minutes (they will always say something like “something came up with a portfolio company’s acquisition, but the truth is probably that the barista messed up and gave them an almond milk latte instead of a soy milk one and they had to wait for the right beverage - kind of a joke.) The VC will probably then give you a few minute spiel around what makes their fund different. Then assume that you need to answer at least 5 minutes of questions if your pitch is not going well - and 10 minutes of questions or more if the investor is engaged. And you’ll need a 5-minute pitch, that isn’t rushed, if some important partner is running way late or misses the first 20 minutes of your 30-minute meeting. 

The standard table of contents in a good pitch deck is:

Based on the $1 billion our clients raised last year in VC funding, we think you will want:

1. Cover/title slide - including the company name and the founder’s contact info

2. The industry’s or customers’ problem - the pain that your startup is solving

3. Your startup’s solution or value proposition - how your startup fixes the issue / the benefits you provide

The templates start to diverge, so a few different next slides are:

6. Go to market/growth - explain how you are going to grow

7. Competition and or competitive analysis/advantages - all startups have some sort of competition, or there is at least a way that customers are currently dealing with the pain your startup is solving

9. Financial projections - include revenue growth, high-level spend, burn, and other KPIs like customer count (you can go deeper in an appendix or in a financial model). And if you are looking for a free downloadable model template, visit our financial modeling page . 

10. Summary:

I am slightly older school - I usually like an “executive summary” after the cover page that goes over the company and round. I think this is probably a page that went out of style in 2015 or so, but I still like it because it quickly helps the VC see what your key metrics/sales points are, and how much you are raising. I usually recommend only four or five bullets on this slide:

Given that YC and Guy Kawasaki seem to no longer (or maybe never) had an exec summary at the front of their venture capital pitch deck templates, you are probably OK ignoring my advice and just getting straight from the cover page to the problem statement. 

Tips for your slides

Here are some of the slides that we mention above and some tips that founders we work with have found helpful:

Seed Pitch Deck Outline

Our COO, Scott Orn (also a former VC) has been assisting a number of seed and pre-seed companies during their fundraises, and has produced an outline/template for a seed pitch deck.

Pre-seed is sort of a new asset class. It’s essentially the first money in. That’s what seed used to be for everyone. So this is applicable to pre-seed and seed - basically, what to present when your company is more of an idea.

And then there’s a tiny little tip which is, oftentimes you get to the end of the presentation and that slide just sits up there for the remainder of the pitch discussion. If it’s going to sit there, just make it like something showing how awesome you are or helping you close the sale, maybe it’s pictures, maybe it’s graphs or your traction. Instead of having that boring, “questions” slide, do something that spices it up. And every time they kind of subconsciously look at the slide deck on the wall, or the presentation, even though you’re just talking after the presentation has been done, it can kind of help convince them in a small way. So just a little tip to help your pitch deck be a bit stronger at the end.

At the seed stage, you’re still living the dream and you’re convincing investors that they should come along. So it’s a little less finance, a little less metrics and more vision. But really this framework should work for any type of venture capital presentation.

How to write a pitch deck to raise funding

Ok, so you’ve now seen the VC and seed deck outlines above - but how so you actually start writing a presentation that will help you get funding? Here is how I have successfully written pitch decks when I was raising VC money:

Tips for your fund raising presentation if time is running short

Ok, so as I outlined, it’s highly likely that your 30 minute conversation gets cut into a much shorter time frame. There are good ways to handle this and bad. The worst way that I’ve seen is when a CEO talks REALLY REALLY fast and blows through the preso. It’s hard for anyone to soak in the information, it can be hard to understand, and it usually doesn’t work. A better way is to have the 5 minute presentation ready to go, and then to just walk through that briskly. No demo, and try to answer the VC’s questions as quickly as possible.

Tips for the financial section of your pitch deck

As financial advisors to funded startups, we tend to overly index on the financial section of our client’s fundraising pitch decks. Note that this is our interest area (and how we get paid), so it may or may not be all that interesting or important for your startup’s presentation. 

The financial detail that you go into in your VC deck will vary based on the stage of your business. So, let’s breakdown what you might need for a seed to Series C company.

Finally, we’ve complied some other pitch deck examples that you may find helpful. Again, we think the best VC pitch decks templates/examples are the ones we highlighted at the top of this page, but here are some of the others that are floating around on the internet that you may like.

Five Other Amazing Pitch Deck Examples

So that makes 10 of the best pitch deck templates and examples that we’ve seen on the internet. 

Pitch Deck Example from a Kruze Client

One of our clients, DeepScribe , was interviewed on TechCrunch Live about their Series A fundraising process. Akilesh Bapu, the CEO and co-Founder of DeepScribe, was interviewed along with Nina Achadjian, a VC and Partner at Index Ventures. Nina invested $30 million into the company, and was impressed with the founders and the story they explained during their pitch.

In addition to giving Kruze Consulting a shout-out for our help on his accounting diligence (thanks Akilesh!) he also walks through part of his VC pitch deck. It’s one of the better examples that we’ve seen of a live pitch deck presentation. You can watch on Youtube or see below.

What Questions do VCs ask During a Pitch?

Questions during a pitch are a GREAT sign - that means that the venture capitalist is paying attention. I strongly recommend founders use their venture capital pitch deck as a crutch, jumping to the right slide to answer the specific question , then going back to the original presentation order to make sure all important topics are hit. Again, I’ve seen partners reject a company because “the founder didn’t talk about go to market.” Yeah, they didn’t have time to talk about it because of all of your questions! 

Here are some of the trickier questions investors might ask during a presentation. Think about which slide you might be able to use to answer these questions. Resist the temptation to argue with a VC if they ask difficult questions; saying you don’t know but then laying out your plan to figure it out is a great response to many questions. 

Questions VCs Ask

VC Pitch Deck FAQ

Because Google says people are asking questions.

What is a VC pitch deck?

A VC pitch deck is a presentation (typically in Powerpoint, Google Sheets or PDF) used to explain a startup idea to potential venture capital investors. A pitch deck contains information on the business, the market and the company’s traction/financials. 

What is a pitch deck used for?

These presentations are used to 1) convince venture capitalists to take a 1st meeting with the founder(s); 2) begin investment due diligence and 3) convince the venture firm’s partnership to want to invest in a startup. 

Will a deck help you get a meeting with a VC?

A great venture capital pitch deck may help you get a meeting with a venture capitalist. VC firm NFX reminds startup founders that investors are looking for the following 12 data points before taking a meeting with a startup:

Does your venture capital presentation have to be PowerPoint?

VCs typically expect a slide deck; these days usually a PowerPoint, Google Slides or a PDF of one of those formats. I’ve been with companies that have used designers to create an incredibly slick venture capital presentation, which they presented as a PDF - no idea which tool was used to actually design the presentation, but it was likely an Adobe product. The most important thing is making the presentation be in 1) slides and 2) something they can share and access from their computer.

Is it OK to share your venture capital presentation by DocSend or a presentation sharing platform instead of as an email attachment?

These days more and more VCs are Ok getting the presentation as a DocSend or other presentation sharing platform that asks for their email address or asks to verify that they are someone you to share the document with. However, you’ll occasionally find the grump VC who wants their presentation the old school way. Often these investors write up their dislike of sharing tools on their blog or Twitter. 

How do you modify your pitch deck for the final, all-hands VC partner pitch?

The final step to getting a term sheet, at many venture capital firms, is to pitch the partnership one final time. This is after you’ve already gotten one of the partners to support your investment internally as the champion. In the final meeting, you’ll have the full range of understanding of your company - from the partner who is supporting you and who knows a ton to partners who know close to nothing. 

It’s not safe to assume knowledge on your industry or problem. Invite all the partners into the fold by explaining and building excitement around what you are doing. Don’t gloss over the market size or competition! 

Hope this helps you find a good pitch deck template for your fundraise!

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Venture Capital Firm Business Plan Sample

Venture capital business plan guide, venture capital business plan example.


• Investing in financial contracts on own account • Participating in clubs comprising of those who pool their money to make investments • Oil royalty dealing • Venture capital • Trade in financial products • Related investment consulting and advisory services

Although the fact that the nation is trying to come out of a recession has made the venture capital industry face little challenges and hiccups here and there, it has now set on a steady path to growth.

Our services would not just be providing startup capital for businesses, there is also the need to search for such companies where capital invested would lead to massive growth in a short period.

• Small and medium enterprises • Accredited Investors. • Business accelerators and startups. • Investment Clubs. • Top corporate executives • Corporate Organizations.

To this end, we will be equipped with the right staff that is competent and trustworthy and would be given the right motivation which would include a quality welfare package.

• Advertising our business in corporate organizations, startups, entrepreneurs, and investors by sending out introductory letters as well as flyers, pamphlets, and other marketing materials to them. • Advertising our business on social media platforms including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and others. • Listing our business on LinkedIn and other outsourcing agencies. • Make use of a direct marketing approach. • Request and appraise word-of-mouth adverts by clients.

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sample business plan for venture capital funding

Venture Capital Business Plan

Competitive Advantage with a Venture Capital Business Plan

As a startup company, one of the most important things you can do is to create a business plan that will secure funding from venture capitalists. But what exactly is a business plan for a venture capitalist?

A business plan is a comprehensive document that outlines the business goals and strategies of a company seeking venture capital investment. It typically includes detailed information about the company’s product or service, market analysis, financial projections, and management team bios.

A business plan for potential investors must be well-written and well-presented to impress those looking to fund your business. It should clearly state why the company needs funding and how it will be used. The financial projections should be realistic and backed up by market research. The management team should be able to demonstrate their expertise in running a business.

If you are a startup company looking for venture capital investment, it is essential to create a well-crafted business plan that will impress potential investors.

Who are Venture Capitalists? 

A venture capitalist (VC) is an individual or firm that invests its capital in startup companies in exchange for ownership equity. They are typically looking for high-growth businesses with solid business plans and a team of experienced entrepreneurs.

VCs can provide much-needed capital to young companies, but they also bring expertise and guidance. In return for their investment, VCs typically require a seat on the company’s board of directors and a share of the profits.

What are Venture Capital Firms? 

A venture capital firm is an organization that invests money in startup companies in exchange for a percentage of ownership in the company. In return for their investment, venture capitalists typically require a seat on the company’s board of directors and a share of the profits.

There are many venture capital firms around the world, but not all of them are interested in investing in every type of company. It is important to do your research and find the right VC firm for your business.

Types of Venture Capital Investment

There are two main types of venture capital investment: equity financing and debt financing.

Equity financing is when VCs invest venture capital in exchange for a percentage of ownership in the company. This type of financing is typically used by early-stage companies that need a large amount of capital to get started. In return for their investment, VCs typically require a seat on the company’s board of directors and a share of the profits.

Debt financing is when VCs provide a loan of venture capital to the company in exchange for interest payments. This type of financing is typically used by more established companies that need a smaller amount of capital. In return for their investment, VCs typically require a personal guarantee from the company’s founders.

There are different stages of investment or funding for startup companies. They are:

Seed Funding

Seed funding is the earliest stage of venture capital investment. It typically goes to businesses just starting and has not yet launched their product or service. Seed funding can be used to cover the costs of research and development, marketing, and other early-stage expenses.

Series A Funding

Series A funding is the next stage of venture capital investment. It is typically used to finance the launch of a product or service, expand into new markets, or hire additional staff. Series A funding can also be used to cover the costs of marketing and advertising.

Series B Funding

Series B funding is a form of venture capital that is usually used to help a company grow at a faster pace. It can be used to finance the expansion of a business into new markets, hire additional staff, or develop new products or services.

Series C Funding

Series C funding is typically used by companies that are ready to go public or be acquired by another company. It can also be used to finance a major expansion, such as the opening of new offices or the launch of a new product line.

How to Raise Venture Capital and VC Funding

There are several ways to raise venture capital for your startup company. One option is to take out loans from family, friends, or banks. Another option is to sell equity in your company to a venture capitalist.

If you are selling equity in your company for venture capital, it is important to have a well-crafted business plan that will impress potential investors. Your business plan should include detailed information about your product or service, market analysis, financial projections, and management team bios.

You can also use crowdfunding platforms to raise capital from a large group of people. crowdfunding is a great way to get your business off the ground, but it is important to remember that you will be giving up a percentage of ownership in your company.

What Capital Raising Options are Available for a Business?

There are a few different types of capital-raising options available for businesses. The most common options are:

One option for raising capital is to take out loans from banks or other financial institutions. This type of financing is typically used by more established businesses that have a good credit history.

Venture Capital

Another option for raising capital is to take out investments from a venture capitalist. A venture capitalist is an individual or firm that invests money in startup companies in exchange for a percentage of ownership in the company.


Crowdfunding is a newer form of financing that allows businesses to raise money from a large group of people via the internet. There are several crowdfunding platforms available, such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo.

Initial Public Offering (IPO)

An IPO is when a company sells shares of stock to the public for the first time. This type of financing is typically used by more established companies that are looking to raise a large amount of capital.

Small Business Administration (SBA) Loans

The SBA is a government agency that provides loans to small businesses. These loans are typically used by businesses that may not qualify for traditional bank financing.

Which Capital Raising Option is Right for Your Business?

The type of capital-raising option that is right for your business will depend on many factors, such as the stage of your business, the amount of money you need to raise, and your credit history.

If you are just starting, you may want to consider crowdfunding or an SBA loan. If you have a good credit history, you may be able to get a bank loan. If you are looking to raise a large amount of money, you may want to consider an IPO.

No matter which option you choose, it is important to have a well-crafted business plan that will impress potential investors. Your business plan should include detailed information about your product or service, market analysis, financial projections, and management team bios.

Startup Companies Business Plan Template

If you are a startup company looking for venture capital investment, it is essential to create a well-crafted business plan that will impress potential investors. Use this business plan template to get started:

Executive Summary

The executive summary is a brief overview of your company’s history, mission, and objectives. It should be no more than two pages long.

Company Description

The company description should provide an overview of your business, including your products or services, market analysis, and target customers.

Management Team

The management team section should include bios of your executive team and any other key personnel.

When writing about the management team section of a business plan, you should include bios of your executive team and any other key personnel. This section should also include a description of each team member’s experience and qualifications. This is also a great section to include the management team’s motivation and why the business is raising money.

Financial Projections

The financial projections section should include your company’s historical financial information, as well as your projected income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement.

When writing about the financial projections section of a business plan, you should include your company’s historical financial information, as well as your projected income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement. This information will help potential investors understand how your company is performing financially and what the future outlook is for your business.

Investor Information

The investor information section should include your company’s equity structure and any terms or conditions that would be attached to an investment.

This business plan template will help you get started on creating a professional and impressive business plan that will attract venture capitalists. Remember to tailor the template to your specific business needs.

Raising Venture Capital FAQs

What is venture capital.

Venture capital is a type of investment that is typically used to finance the launch or expansion of a business. Venture capitalists are usually interested in high-growth companies with the potential to generate large returns.

How do I raise venture capital?

There are several ways to raise venture capital, including taking out loans, selling equity in your company, or using crowdfunding platforms. It is important to have a well-crafted business plan when seeking investment from venture capitalists.

What are the different types of venture capital investment?

The three main types of venture capital investment are seed funding, series A funding, and series B funding. Seed funding is typically used to finance the launch of a new business, series A funding is used to finance the expansion of a business, and series B funding is typically used to finance the go public or being acquired by another company.

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Venture Capital Business Plan Template

Looking for a venture capital investment for a growth-oriented business? Make use of this sample outline to create your business plan and improve your chances of attracting equity investors.

The goal of the executive summary is to stimulate and motivate the investor to learn more. Keep it simple, be brief. If your business is truly complex, you can dive into the details later on.

The goal of this section is to educate the investor about your company’s history and explain why your team is perfect to execute on the business opportunity. Give some history and provide the background on the company. Show off your track record. Detail prior accomplishments, including funding rounds, product launches, milestones reached and partnerships secured. Demonstrate your team’s unique competitive advantage or key partnerships.

The goal here is to prove that there is a real market for your product or service. Demonstrate the need for your product. Cite credible and independent sources when describing the size and growth of your market. Determine the relevant market size and focus on the products or services that you will directly compete against. Explain how you would overcome potential negative trends.

Convey the needs of your customers and show how your products or services satisfy those needs. Define your customers precisely. Detail their demographics. How many customers fit the definition and where are these customers located? Use data to demonstrate past actions (X% have purchased a similar product), future projections (X% said they would purchase the product), and/or implications (X% use a product which your product enhances). Explain what drives their decisions. Detail the decision-making process.

Define the competition and demonstrate your competitive advantage. List competitors. Include direct and indirect competitors. Carefully describe their strengths and weaknesses, as well as the key drivers of competitive differentiation in the marketplace. Demonstrate barriers to entry. In describing the competitive landscape, show how your business model creates competitive advantages, and defensible barriers to entry.

Describe how your company will penetrate the market, deliver products/services, and retain customers. Products - Detail all products and services, but focus primarily on the short-to-intermediate time horizon. Promotions - Explain which marketing/advertising strategies will be used and why. Price - Provide a clear rationale for your pricing strategy. Place - Explain how your products/services will be delivered to your customers. Explain how you will retain your customers. Define your partnerships.

Detail the short term processes and systems that provide your customers with your products and services. Business milestones - Lay out the significant long-term business milestones for the company, and prove that the team will execute on the long-term vision.

A set of financial projections is included with this section automatically. Detail your key assumptions here. Detail the uses of funds. Understandably, investors want to know what, specifically, you plan to do with their money. Provide a clear exit strategy. The most common exits are IPOs or acquisitions.

sample business plan for venture capital funding

Collection of templates

More From Forbes

A guide to investor pitch decks for startup fundraising.

By Richard Harroch

Startups frequently prepare a “pitch deck” to present their company to prospective angel or venture capital investors. The pitch deck typically consists of 15-20 slides in a PowerPoint presentation and is intended to showcase the company’s products, technology, and team to the investors.

Raising capital from investors is difficult and time consuming. Therefore, it’s crucial that a startup creates a great investor pitch deck by articulating a compelling and interesting story.

Pitching to investors can be tough, so it’s important to nail your presentation.

In this article, I provide important advice for creating a strong, thorough, and engaging investor pitch deck, along with guidance on presenting to angel and venture capital investors. I also provide links to sample pitch decks you can check out for reference as you begin the process of building your own.

Important Do’s and Don’ts for Investor Pitch Decks

Too many entrepreneurs make a number of avoidable mistakes when creating their investor pitch decks. Here is a list of preliminary do’s and don’ts to keep in mind.

What to do:

Best Travel Insurance Companies

Best covid-19 travel insurance plans, don’t do this:.

Make Sure to Review Other Pitch Deck Examples

In creating your pitch deck for investors, it’s extremely helpful to view other sample pitch decks. A great many pitch decks are available online, including:

Check out this  sample investor pitch deck  for (a mobile app startup) that I created, which incorporates the advice I give in this article. This sample can be downloaded for free and used as a template for your own investor pitch.

What Are the Key Slides You Want In Your Investor Pitch Deck?

You want your investor pitch deck to cover the following topics, roughly in the order set forth here and with titles along the lines of the following:

Try to avoid deviating from this format, as investors expect this type of presentation.

1. The “Company Overview” Slide of the Pitch Deck

I’m a big believer that the page after the cover page should be a “Company Overview” where you summarize in 4-6 bullet points your business, what problem it solves, where you are located, the experience of the management team, and any key traction already established.

For example, here is what your “Company Overview” page could say:

Example of a strong "Company Overview" slide.

Your company overview page should grab the reader and convince them that your company has the opportunity to grow big.

2. The “Mission/Vision” Slide of the Pitch Deck

In this slide, you want a crisp summary of the mission/vision of the company. Some examples of a mission include:

The “vision” can be the goal you think you could become, such as “Our vision is to become the leading e-commerce company for individuals recuperating from injuries.”

Think of this slide as your 15-second compelling elevator pitch.

3. “The Team” Slide of the Pitch Deck

Many investors believe that a company’s team is the most important determinant of whether or not to invest. “The Team” slide will typically include:

4. “The Problem” Slide in the Pitch Deck

You need to define the problem or need your startup is solving, including:

5. “The Solution” Slide in the Pitch Deck

Since the prior slide articulated the problem, “The Solution” section of your investor pitch deck should articulate your proposed solution and why it’s better than other solutions in the market. This deck should be carefully coordinated with the “Product” slide of the pitch deck, as there may be some overlap.

6. The “Product” Slide of the Pitch Deck

You must clearly articulate what your company’s product or service consists of and why it is unique, so “The Product” slide of the pitch deck should answer:

Images, visuals, and videos can play an important role here—don’t just have lengthy written explanations.

7. The “Market Opportunity” Slide of the Pitch Deck

Investors want to invest in big opportunities with large addressable markets. On your “Market Opportunity” slide you want to:

8. The “Customers” Slide of the Pitch Deck

If the company has early customers, a “Customers” slide can be powerful and add credibility. Normally, the logos of customers that are well known are included in this slide page. Here is an example of this page, which highlights both customers and partnerships of the company:

Example of a "Customers and Partnerships" slide.

9. “The Technology” Slide of the Pitch Deck

Investors will be particularly interested in your underlying technology (both existing and that in development). This slide of the investor pitch deck can address:

10. The “Competition” Slide of the Pitch Deck

The company’s competitors will always be an issue to investors. Your “Competition” slide should anticipate the following questions:

You really have to show an understanding of the competitive landscape and be prepared to answer questions about your competitors. If you don’t understand your competitors, then the investor may conclude that you really don’t understand the market.

11. The “Traction” Slide of the Pitch Deck

A company that has obtained early traction in some way will be viewed positively. A “Traction” slide is sometimes, but not always, included in the pitch deck (sometimes the company’s progress/traction is just sprinkled through other slides). The “Traction” slide can cover the following:

12. “The Business Model” Slide of the Pitch Deck

The investors will want to understand your business model. So this slide can address key issues like:

13. The “Marketing Plan” Slide of the Pitch Deck

No matter how good your product is, you will need to have a good marketing plan to get customers or users. The “Marketing Plan” slide of the pitch deck can cover:

14. The “Financials” Slide of the Pitch Deck

Investors will want to understand the company’s current financial situation and proposed future “burn” rate (monthly or yearly cash loss while the company is developing and marketing its product).

The “Financials” slide sometimes includes the following:

Make sure your projections are not unrealistic; you don’t want prospective investors to immediately question your projections as absurd or just not believable. Avoid the trap of saying you will grow revenues by 10x in one year but only increase sales and marketing costs by 2x.

15. “The Ask” Slide of the Pitch Deck

Near the end, you should have a slide entitled “The Ask.” On this slide you should address:

Here is a sample slide from my sample investor pitch deck:

Slide outlining what you are asking investors for.

For related information, see:

A great investor pitch deck can make obtaining financing for your startup much more likely. But you need to make sure the story is compelling and interesting. You must address the topics that investors expect to see.

Copyright © by Richard D. Harroch. All Rights Reserved.

About the Author

I write about startups, venture capital, mergers and acquisitions and Internet companies. I am a Managing Director and Global Head of M&A for  VantagePoint Capital Partners , a large venture capital fund in the San Francisco area. My focus as a venture capitalist is on investing in Internet and Digital Media companies. I am the author of several books on startups and entrepreneurship. I am also the founder or co-founder of several Internet companies, having sold them to NBC Interactive, LexisNexis and D&B. I am the co-author of Poker for Dummies and a Wall Street Journal bestselling book on small businesses. I was also a corporate partner at the law firm of Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, with experience in startups, mergers and acquisitions, strategic alliances, and venture capital.

This article was originally published on  AllBusiness . See all articles by  Richard Harroch .


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Securing Venture Capital Funding for Your Business

First I need to clarify: I use venture capital in the title of this post because so many people in the real world apply the phrase venture capital to any investment that isn’t friends and family, personal savings, or a business ally establishing a joint venture. Technically that’s the wrong phrase because venture capital is really only a small number of professional investment firms charged with professionally investing other people’s money in startups or growth companies.

Real venture capital is a very rarified subset of investment in startups. Most of it comes in amounts in millions of dollars, invested in companies that are already launched, growing, and needing follow-on investment. That happens fewer than 5,000 times in an average year in the U.S. And that 5,000-per-year venture capital investment compares to roughly six million startups in an average year in the U.S. If your startup is really a candidate for venture capital, you know that already, and you know how and where to get it. If you are that one-in-a-million company that gets venture capital right at the beginning, then hats off; you should be very proud.

What you are probably looking for, if you’re reading this post, is angel investment. Angel investors invest in about 75,000 startups in an average year, in the U.S. Angel investments are way more likely than venture capital to occur in a new company. A first investment in a new company is usually called seed, or seed stage, and almost all of that is from angel investors.

For more on the difference between venture capital and angel investors, try this post: What’s the Difference Between Angel Investors and VC ?

And for more on what angel investors want, how to approach them, mistakes to avoid, try this link: articles and posts on angel investors in .

With that as background, here’s my summary of how to find investors for your startup:

General Resources

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Tim Berry is the founder and chairman of Palo Alto Software and Follow him on Twitter @Timberry .

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Home » Business Plans

7 Beginner Steps to Writing a Simple Business Plan for Funding

Do you need a business plan to get funding from investors or a bank loan? If YES, here are 7 beginner steps to writing a detailed business plan for a small startup.

In these times of financial uncertainty, financial gurus have been steadily spreading the gospel that starting a business, no matter how small, is the only sure route to financial stability. Having thought out a suitable business, the only sure route to business success, especially for those intending to seek for business funding, is to write a plan for your business.

What is a Business Plan?

A business plan can be defined as a document that describes in great detail how a business is going to achieve its goals. This plan is essentially a map that shows an entrepreneur how to build up a viable business.

A good business plan usually contains the executive summary of the business, an overview of the industry the business will be a part of, the problems identified that needs solving, its services and/or products, how the business intends to achieve its goals and how it will distinguish itself from its potential competitors etc.

For one who is writing a business plan which he intends to use to get funding from investors, the business plan should contain details like; financial projections, target market, exit strategy, etc.

Even though a business plan has to contain a lot of business specifics so as to provide great detail for investors, but it should be noted that the plan should never be voluminous as you risk losing it to the trash can. Try as much as possible to fit in the details in at most 20 pages or less so that it can be readable because investors are always very busy people who have no time to pore over irrelevant words.

Even if you are not soliciting funding from an investor, you still need to write a business plan for your business because a business plan allows you to identify potential problems and opportunities your business might encounter, it would help you avoid penalties, fines or other legal problems, help you adapt to changes in the marketplace and let you expand or contract from a position of objectivity.

Other benefits of a business plan include;

Benefits of a Business Plan to an Entrepreneur

4 Beginner Tips to Writing a Simple Business Plan for Funding

a. Fine tune your executive summary: You have to keep in mind that you are not the only one who needs funding for a business. Because of the sheer number of people seeking funding, bankers and professional investors do receive so many business plans.

In order to be able to go through all of them, they sometimes go right to the executive summary for an overall view of what your plan is all about. You have to make sure that your executive summary contains all the details of your business plan in such a way that one can know everything about your business from the executive summary alone.

b. Ensure that your business plan has all the necessary sections: You would be surprised at how many business plans are submitted with important data missing. You need to check, and check again to make sure all the important components are included when you are done with writing. Even when using business plan software, people skip sections or decide an area isn’t important. Leave nothing to chance. A well-written and complete business plan gives you a higher chance of success and better odds of getting the financing you are seeking.

c. Know your business inside out: While the business plan should have all the answers, investors, bankers and venture capitalists are shrewd and ask questions that may not be answered in the plan. Be ready to answer anything they can possibly throw at you.

d. Know your audience: you need to know who you want to present the business plan to and write accordingly to suit them. You need to use the language your audience will understand, and avoid using excessive jargon. You can always use the appendix of your plan to provide more specific details.

How to Write a Detailed Business Plan to Get Funding from Investors or Bankers

Having known what a business plan is and its uses, let’s go ahead to provide specifics of what should be included in the business if the entrepreneur wishes to get external funding.

When writing a business plan that is to be presented to investors, certain things should be made priority while others can be given minimal emphasis or left out altogether. Here is what your business plan should look like if you want it to be effective.

The executive summary is a very important plan of a business plan that is targeted at investors. It has already been said this part of the plan should be detailed so as to attract whoever that is reading it. Your executive summary should represent an overview of your business and your plans. It comes first in the plan and is ideally only one to two pages.

The executive summary is an introduction to the main ideas that you will discuss in the rest of the plan. If an investor reads only the executive summary and nothing else, they should be able to have a clear understanding of the main highlights of your business and if or why it should get funding.

A good executive summary includes quick overviews of the mission statement, product/service summary, market opportunity summary, traction summary, next steps, and vision statement etc.

It should be noted that although the executive summary comes first, it is often beneficial to write it last because you would have tidied up the business details by then and thus know what needs to be included and what should not.

The investment opportunity section is where you tell investors what your goals are, how you intend to achieve those goals, why the investors should make funds available to help you achieve those goals, and what they have to gain from getting involved with your company. The section would also include how much you need to move forward, how you plan to use those funds, and what you will be able to achieve with their investment.

One of the things that woo investors to a business is the team they have working for them. This section of the business plan should be utilized to describe your current team, who you need to hire and what their roles would be. You have to be able to convince your reader that not only that your team is the right team for the job, but that they are the only team for the job.

For this to be believed, you need to create a bio for each member of the team and each of their bio should include: the team member’s name; their title and position at the company; their professional background; any special skills they have developed as a result of their past experience; their role and responsibilities at your company; and what makes them uniquely qualified to take that role on.

You should endavour not to make this lengthy so as not to get boring. About three to five concise sentences on each team member would do.

In order to bring out opportunities that exist in the market for your business, you have to enumerate the problems that need solving, or inconveniences that need to be eliminated. A good market opportunity section addresses two key points:

The problem that your product/service solves, and the industry trends that make now the time for your company to succeed. This section basically answers the question of WHY. You should equally include recent trends that have been noticed in the market and how they would influence or affect your business.

And to sum it all up, write a conclusion that answers this question: How do the problems customers face and the trends that are happening come together to create the perfect environment for your company to succeed?

The target audience section is where you show readers that you know who your audiences are, where they can be found, and what is important to them.

You equally have to enumerate the people that your product/service is designed to appeal to, consider what your customers’ demographic are, if your target audience is made up of more male or more female, what age range your target customers fall into, the number of people in your target demographic, where your target customers live, how much money they make, their priorities or concerns when it comes to the products/services they buy, etc.

In this section, you would have to provide facts on how your company intends to make money. You need to identify all current/initial revenue sources, including pricing, COG, and margins.

You should equally provide details of your pricing model and what informed the price you would be offering. Indicate also how your price compares to that of your competitors, if there is any additional revenue source you plan to add down the line, and how you intend to start generating revenue if you haven’t started already.

In this section, you are required to identify your competitors and their key strengths and weaknesses. You also need to identify your competitive advantages, that is, why you can be more successful than the others. This essentially means how your product/service is different from the others in the market and how those differences will help you to maintain your strategic edge. Ask yourself: What are the key differentiators between your company and other companies out there? How will these advantages translate into a long-term advantage for your company?

Traction is a huge part of showing that your business is already on ground. Investors will want to see the progress you’ve made so far and future milestones that you intend to hit. If you can prove that your potential customers are already interested in—or perhaps already buying—your product or service, then it is beneficial to include it.

Here are some key categories of traction that signal to readers that your company is making moves.

Your business plan isn’t complete without a financial forecast. A typical financial plan is required to have monthly projections for the first 12 months and then annual projections for the remaining three to five years. Three-year projections are typically adequate and a lot of business plan writer use it, but some investors will request a five-year forecast. We believe that it is better to err on the side of caution.

Your financial plan section should have other sub sections to help provide more detail, and they include;

Your personnel plan details how much salary you plan on paying your employees. For a small company, you might list every position on the personnel plan and how much will be paid each month for each position. For a larger company, the personnel plan is typically broken down into functional groups such as “marketing” and “sales.”

Your sales forecast is just your projections of how much you are going to sell over the next few years. A sales forecast is typically broken down into several rows, with a row for each core product or service that you are offering. Don’t bring in all the boring details just yet, just focus on the highlights.

The profit and loss statement which is also known as the income statement, is where your numbers all come together and show if you’re making a profit or taking a loss. This is section should also include a list of all other ongoing expenses associated with running your business.

The balance sheet provides an overview of the financial health of your business. It lists the assets in your company, the liabilities, and the owner’s equity. If you subtract the company’s liabilities from assets, you can determine the net worth of the company.

Since you are raising money from investors, you should include a brief section that details exactly how you plan on using your investors’ cash.

This section doesn’t need to go into excruciating detail about how every last dollar will be spent, but instead, show the major areas where the investors’ funds will be spent. These could include marketing, sales, or perhaps purchasing inventory.

Another thing you would need to include in your financial plan chapter is a section on your exit strategy. This aspect is very necessary for an entrepreneur who is looking for investors.

An exit strategy is your plan for eventually selling your business, either to another company or to the public in an IPO. Since you intend to have investors, they will want to know your thoughts on this. After all, your investors will want to get a return on their investment, and the only way they will get this is if the company is sold to someone else.

While you may not go into great detail here, but you would need to identify some companies that might be interested in buying you if you are successful.

In this section, you have to indicate if your business has growth potentials, and what your growth projections are. If you have any plans of introducing new products to compliment the already existing ones, list the products and state why they would help your business grow. You can provide a timeline of when you expect each new development to take place and if you would need to acquire larger space for that.

If you need more space for product images, additional information or other technicalities, use the appendix for those details. An appendix to your business plan isn’t a required chapter by any means, but it is a useful place to stick any charts, tables, definitions, legal notes, or other critical information that either felt too long or too out-of-place to include elsewhere in your business plan. If you have a patent or a patent pending, or illustrations of your product, this is where you’d want to include the details.

10 Reasons Why Your Business Plan May Fail to Get Funding from Investors

With a lot of businesses, both small and large, opening up and which require funds for sustenance, investors and lenders are sometimes overwhelmed with business funding requests.

Most times, a business plan is the only basis investors have for deciding whether or not to invite an entrepreneur to their offices for an initial meeting. With so many funding request, investors usually pick up a business plan while keeping an eye out for a reason to drop it back.

It should be noted that no business is more special or more important than the other, and as such every mistake, no matter how slight, would count against you. So, in writing a business plan that you are looking to get funding with, there is no room for mistakes.

That said, here are pitfalls you have to avoid when writing a business plan that you intend to get funding with.

Investors would always prefer that you say things as they are. Unnecessary hype would not do your funding prospects any good. You are advised to lay out the raw facts – the problem, your solution, the market size, how you will sell it, and how you will stay ahead of competitors – and allow the investors be the judge.

Business plans that fail to explain in good details their sales, marketing and distribution strategies are not going to get the nod. You must thoroughly research your target market to know who you are selling to and who would buy from you. You must explain how you have already generated customer interest, obtained pre-orders, or better yet, made actual sales – and describe how you will leverage this experience through a cost-effective market strategy.

No matter what you may think or what niche your business is in, you have competitors. Maybe not a direct competitor – in the sense of a company offering an identical solution – but at least a substitute. A competitor is one who has something to do with that line of business. To say that you have no competition will make investors to conclude that you do not have a full understanding of your market.

Problem is synonymous with market opportunity. The greater the problem, the more widespread the opportunity; and the better your product is at providing solution, the greater your market potential. If your business plan cannot pin point a true problem it wants to solve, then it is would be tossed out.

You should be aware that investors are very busy people, and do not have the time to read long business plans. They also favor entrepreneurs who demonstrate the ability to convey the most important elements of a complex idea with an economy of words. Keep in mind that the primary purpose of a fund-raising business plan is to motivate the investor to pick up the phone and invite you to an in-person meeting, so you should endeavor to keep it as short as possible.

As far as investors are concerned, an effectively written business plan is one that is able to balance risks and rewards. Some of the first things they want to know are the risks inherent in the business, and what has been done to mitigate these risks. You should be able to provide an analysis of your market risks, operational risks, management risks, legal risks, technical risks etc. Without this, your business plan would not be given a second thought.

Though there is no specific sequence for a business plan, but you should ensure that your business plan should flow in a nice, organized fashion. Each section should build logically on the previous and the next section, without requiring the reader to know something that is presented later in the plan. Any business plan that is not properly arranged would only see the trash.

All too often, a plan covers the same points over and over. It is recommended that a well-written plan should cover key points only twice: once, briefly, in the executive summary, and again, in greater detail, in the body of the plan. But some entrepreneurs tend to emphasize points by being too repetitive. This fact makes the plan boring and it should be avoided by all means.

Spelling mistakes and poor grammatical constructions tend to make any written document difficult to decipher. An investor may not trust anyone that allows silly mistakes in his business plan to run a profitable business. This just goes to show that the person is careless. You should use spelling and grammar checkers, and equally get other people to edit the plan, so as to avoid mistakes.

A lot of entrepreneurs are in the habit of blowing up their business financial projections in a bid to make the business look more profitable than it really is. Investors would always see through this, and trust me, they won’t be impressed.You should work on keeping your projection realistic and at par with what the market gives.

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Top 4 Business Plan Examples

Writing your first business plan be sure to review these four business plan examples from the startups community that really stand out from the crowd..

November 9th, 2022    |    By: The Startups Team

Founders have to learn so many new skills when they're launching a startup, and writing a business plan is a big one. When you're writing your  business plan  for the first time, things can get…  intimidating.

What do you include? What kind of wording should you use? What do you make sure not to include? Is a mid size business plan different than an enterprise plan or a scalable startup? Do I need to include financials like cash flow statements? What do investors want to see?

It's enough to make even a stalwart startup founder and management team throw in the towel before they've even begun.

Lucky for you — we've created a  complete guide to writing your business plan . Check it out if you haven't already. (And if a link from there brought you here, just keep reading!) We'll share some business plan samples so you can get started writing your own professional business plan.

But, while it's nice to be guided step-by-step, it can also really help to have concrete examples when you're approaching creating something for the first time.

So, with that in mind, here are four sample business plans from the Startups community that we think really stand out from the crowd. We hope that these will serve as a startup business plan template and make it easier to write your own. At a minimum, these will provide some great business plan ideas whether you are writing traditional business plans for an established business or biz plans for an innovative new startup. While we would of course suggest you use our business plan creator,, you can use these examples with any number of business plan apps or business plan software.

Click on the below links to see fully formatted versions or continue reading for the text-only version of Culina's.


Every good business idea needs a business plan. A traditional business plan can work for most any new business.

CULINA Executive Summary

Fast facts:.

Founded:  2013  Headquarters:  San Francisco, CA  Founder:  Kent McClure  Market Size:  $12.5 billion  Target Audience:  Homeowners; property managers; insurance providers.

Quick Description:

Culina is a San Francisco-based IoT and home automation company. We design an advanced smart hub technology that enables users to interconnect and remotely monitor all of their cooking devices and kitchen appliances through a single user-friendly platform.

Our Mission:

To make homes smarter, more connected, and safer for families while helping them save money and conserve energy through the power of affordable, automated technology.

Our Vision:

To become the leading provider of IoT technology for kitchen appliances on a global scale with applications across both residential and commercial properties.

Company Synopsis:

Culina Tech is the next leading name in home automation and IoT. We're committed to leading the charge in creating the ultimate smart kitchen for homeowners all around the world. Our revolutionary Smart Plugs enable users to make any kitchen appliance or cooking device intelligent. Compatible with all existing brands that plug into standard two or three-prong wall outlets, Culina creates an entire network of Wi-Fi-connected kitchen devices. The Culina App allows users to remotely monitor the status of and control all devices connected to our Smart Plugs. Whether it's remotely turning on the coffee pot after getting out of bed, turning off the stove if it was accidentally left on via smartphone, or switching on the crockpot before getting home from work, Culina is purpose-built to deliver unrivaled convenience and peace of mind.

With the ability to set energy usage caps on a daily, weekly, or monthly basis, Culina helps homeowners stay within their monthly utility budget and save energy in the kitchen through more efficient use of the dishwasher, refrigerator, freezer, stove, and other common appliances.

When a device reaches its energy limit, Culina alerts users through their smartphone and is built with the ability to power down the device automatically if the user chooses. The App measures key usage metrics in real-time, allowing users to get an instant dashboard view of energy consumption as it occurs.

Our team has already finished the product development and design phase, with 3 prototype iterations completed, and we are now ready to begin mass manufacturing. We've also gained major traction among consumers and investors alike, with 10,000 pre-ordered units sold and $5 million in capital secured to date.

With this round of funding, our objective is to ramp up hardware manufacturing, improve software UX and UI, expand our sales and marketing efforts, and fulfill pre-orders in time for the 2017 holiday season. We are currently seeking a $15M Series B capital investment that will give us the financial flexibility to achieve these goals. On behalf of the entire Culina Tech team, we'd like to thank you for your time and interest in our company and this investment opportunity.

Funding Allocation:

⇾  30% Manufacturing  ⇾  25% Sales & Marketing  ⇾  25% Key Hires  ⇾  20% Operational

Team Overview:

The kitchen is the heart of the home. It's a quintessential gathering place where families and friends come together to break bread, be merry, and make memories. But the kitchen is also where tragedy often strikes due to misuse of appliances. Kent McClure and his team set out to make the kitchen a safer and more energy-efficient place for the family after a tragic fire struck his own kitchen in late 2012. Thankfully, no lives were lost and everyone in his family made it out safe and sound, but Kent couldn't help but wonder  “what if.”

With decades in the industrial design space, Kent knew he had the knowledge and the industry contacts to set out to improve upon home automation devices for the kitchen with a solution that not only made homes safer but also cut down on energy consumption and associated costs. In early 2013, Culina was born. Since that time, Kent and the Culina team have made it their mission to completely revolutionize the home automation and IoT space with innovative, AI-powered technology.

Kent McClure | Founder & CEO  Kent is a Carnegie Mellon graduate with over 10 years of executive leadership experience in industrial design and engineering. He has a successful entrepreneurial history, founding a prior tech-based startup which he grew to $100 million in revenue, followed by an acquisition in 2010 and then IPO shortly after.

Sherri Carlson | COO  Sherri earned her MBA from Harvard Business School. She oversees all of Culina's ongoing operations and procedures and is responsible for driving Culina to achieve and surpass sales, profitability, cash flow, and business goals and objectives.

Martin Frink | CTO  Martin is a Stanford University alumnus with extensive technical expertise and over a decade of experience at venture-backed tech companies. He is responsible for Culina's technical vision, heading up all aspects of our technological development, strategic direction, development, and future growth.

Margaret Burns | CFO  Margaret earned her degree in Financial Management from NYU. Prior to joining Culina, Margaret spent seven years as CFO for a publicly-traded mobile tech company headquartered in Silicon Valley. She currently manages Culina's financial risks and handles all financial planning, record-keeping, and reporting.

Business plans should contain a company description, market analysis, financial plan, and mission statement.


Market opportunity.

An enormous need exists for dramatic reductions in energy consumption. Businesses alone consume 12-20% of the total US energy supply on food production, processing, manufacturing, distribution, and preparation.

On the residential side, the Energy Information Administration estimates that the average US household uses 11,280 kWh per year. Many homeowners are simply unaware of the large amount of energy consumed by many small household kitchen appliances:

Dishwasher:  133 watts  Television:  1,200 to 2,400 watts  Coffee Maker:  900 to 1,200 watts  Washing Machine:  350 to 500 watts  Toaster:  55 to 250 watts  Window Fan:  800 to 1,400 watts

The majority of US households now spend roughly 35 percent of their energy consumption on appliances, electronics, and lighting.

Most homeowners don't think about the little details that can help save them money on their energy bill. The vast majority of people keep the refrigerator or freezer too cold, fail to make sure refrigerator door seals are airtight, neglect to regularly defrost fridges and freezers, overload their dishwashers, and keep dishwasher water temperature too hot. As a result, energy consumption remains high, and energy bills remain high.

Not only do kitchens represent a primary source of household energy consumption, but also a primary source of house fires. More fires start in the kitchen than in any other room in the home, and household cooking appliances frequently account for billions of dollars in fire-related insurance claims every year. The number one cause of house fires and house fire injuries is the stove.

✓  46% of house fires caused by cooking equipment  ✓  62% of house fires caused by ranges or cooktops  ✓  $4,000 average fire and smoke damage repair costs

Culina is actively solving both of these common challenges caused by cooking equipment simultaneously. Our technology provides homeowners with immediate, real-time insight into their energy consumption by aggregating data for all kitchen appliances connected to our Smart Plugs while also delivering the preventative intelligence necessary to reduce kitchen-related disasters.

Key Features and Benefits:

We designed our Culina Smart Plugs to work in tandem with an intuitive, user-friendly mobile application — allowing users to gain a much-needed technological upgrade to the most popular room in the house.

Easy Setup:

Culina Smart Plugs work with standard two and three-pronged appliances and cooking devices. Simply attach the Culina Smart Plug to the appliance's electrical, plug it into the wall, download the Culina app, connect, and configure.

A one page business plan is a single page overview of your business plan format, logistics and operations plan priorities, and overall direction.

Constantly Learning:

Powered by machine learning artificial intelligence, our Intelligent Culina Response System learns user habits every time someone uses an appliance connected to one of our Smart Plugs.

Multi-Threat Sensors:

Our state-of-the-art sensors detect a variety of potential threats to the kitchen — including sudden and unusual temperature fluctuations, poisonous gas and emissions, toxic smoke, and more. Homeowners receive alerts whenever unusual activity is in progress such as a stovetop being left on for too long or during an unusual time of day.

Remote Monitoring:

Users can monitor all information directly from an easy-to-navigate dashboard in real-time using the Culina App for iOS and Android. Users can check metrics such as fridge and freezer temperature, cook time, and usage data as it is being gathered.

Remote Appliance Control:

With the Culina App, users can control all connected appliances and devices. If our Smart Plug is attached to a crockpot, for example, a user can add the ingredients before they head to work, activate the crockpot remotely, and come home to a readymade meal waiting for them the moment they step through the front door.

Free business plan templates are available online, or you can create your own business plan as the business owner if you don't want a traditional business plan.

Remote Shut-Off:

Not only does remote operation over appliances provide convenience, it also serves to prevent kitchen-related hazards. The Culina App includes auto shut-off capabilities allowing users to turn off appliances using their smartphone even when they're not at home. This is particularly useful in the event that users forget to turn off the oven or stove to prevent potential house fires.

Advanced Notifications:

In addition to notifying users if an appliance is left on by accident or if it detects a potential hazard, Culina also reminds users anytime regular maintenance is required.

Energy Consumption Data:

Users can also monitor energy consumption on a weekly basis right from the Culina App. By providing at-a-glance insight into whether energy use has gone up or down, users gain the ability to adjust their usage accordingly in order to conserve energy and ultimately save money in utility bills the long term.


Our cloud-based technology integrates with other popular platforms including Google's Nest and Lowe's Iris.

Cost-Saving Benefits:

Not only can users conserve money in energy consumption bills with Culina, but new insurance guidelines also provide significant discounts for homeowners who deploy smart technologies in their homes.

Pricing and revenue

Culina will initially monetize from hardware sales.

Our product will sell for $149 MSRP with approximately 40% profit margin. We will initially sell our product through popular e-commerce platforms and through our website — followed by brick-and-mortar outlets including Lowe's, Best Buy, Home Depot, and other major big box retailers.

5-Year Net Revenue Projections for business planning financial statements

Company Milestones:

With much of the heavy lifting already completed, Culina has laid the groundwork for rapid expansion going forward. Here's an overview of our accomplishments since first founding the company in 2013.

Consumer Validated:

Our first-generation product is market-ready and primed for commercial manufacturing. We have pre-sold 10,000 units, representing approximately $1,890,000 in pre-launch revenue. Our immediate customer base growing by the day and we have successfully proven that this is a product that consumers want and are enthusiastic about.


We have secured a total of $5 million in funding from angel investors, founder capital, friends and family, and VCs.

Proprietary Technology:

We have applied for and have been granted a provisional patent for our Smart Plug technology.

Strategic Partnerships:

We are in the process of building relationships with notable industry leaders, influencers, and development teams in the home automation sector. We are also in advanced-stage partnership discussions with a number of major name insurance providers.

Press Mentions:

Culina has received coverage in many of today's most renowned tech and entrepreneurial publications, including The Wall Street Journal, The Huffington Post, TechCrunch, The Verge, WIRED, and Engadget, among others.


A US-based contract manufacturer has been secured and is ready to begin production with the capacity to produce around 50K units per month as we scale.

Culina Company Timeline: 2013-2017 — displaying competitive advantages to secure funding in possible future rounds.

Future Development

Our initial focus on the consumer space with our launch product is just the first step in our long-term roadmap to growth. In order to capture a larger market share and continue scaling the company exponentially, we are planning on rolling out a B2B model in the future. This will provide Culina with new revenue streams and will offer a valuable, tech-driven solution for businesses.

Commercial Kitchens:

Commercial kitchens consume a huge amount of energy — roughly 2.5 times more per square foot than any other commercial space, according to the EPA.

The Foodservice Consultants Society International (FCSI) estimates commercial kitchen equipment is often only 50% efficient. The challenge with reducing energy consumption in commercial kitchens is that it's neither practical nor affordable to replace all kitchen equipment or redesign entire workspaces.

In an effort to reduce CO2 emissions, some governments are offering incentives to businesses that can cut back on their carbon footprint. In the UK, Enhanced Capital Allowances allow businesses to benefit from 100% tax relief on their qualifying capital expenditure on energy-saving equipment. This can provide a cash flow boost and an incentive to invest in energy-saving equipment which normally carries a price premium compared to less efficient alternatives.

Our 2nd generation product will represent a revenue-generating and energy-saving solution for commercial kitchens where equipment is frequently selected based on low capital cost with little regard to whole life-cycle cost and the resulting negative energy consumption.

Built on cloud computing, machine-to-machine communication, and information-gathering sensors, the Internet of Things market is rapidly making more and more commonplace devices “smarter.” Factor in the increasing prevalence of smartphones and tablets, and home automation and IoT products are now becoming much easier to use and significantly more affordable than they have ever been before.

What was once only reserved for the wealthy and tech-savvy, everyday consumers now have direct access to and can take advantage of a growing number of home automation devices. The evolution of the Internet of Things has enabled consumers to digitally connect and remotely control everything from their door locks to their thermostat to their garage opener and essentially everything else in between. Evidence of the enormous impact home automation tech has had in the consumer space can be seen in the enormous adoption of products like Nest and Amazon Echo.

The home automation market and Internet of Things (IoT) space is a thriving industry with growth expected to exceed $50 billion by 2020. This represents an estimated 300% increase from today's market of $12.5 billion. Around 8.4 billion connected devices will be installed globally by the end of 2017, representing a +31% increase in just one year. Around 63% of these devices will be used by consumers, with the remainder deployed by businesses.

Culina is perfectly positioned to capitalize on a major multi-billion dollar market opportunity to provide greater protection, actionable intelligence, lower energy consumption, and more cost savings to the millions of homes in the US.

Most every business plan template online will prompt to identify target market, a cash flow statement, and business structure.

Target Audience

We are directly targeting three specific target populations for our product:


Homeowners are our end users and will benefit the most from our product. For homeowners, Culina represents safety, peace of mind, increased convenience, and an economically-wise investment that pays for itself over time.

Residential Property Managers:

Including apartment complexes and student housing owners. Culina offers increased owner ROI, occupant satisfaction, and significantly lower operational and maintenance costs.

Insurance Companies:

By reducing home fires caused by unattended cooking and the resulting billions of dollars in related insurance claims filed every year. Insurance companies can also leverage our technology to adjust homeowners insurance policy pricing.

Marketing Strategy

Culina has carefully developed a diverse marketing plan intended to keep our brand in the hearts and minds of our existing and prospective customers, enabling us to continue expanding our reach and grow our business. Between our massive social network followings and email database contacts, we regularly communicate directly with over 100,000 consumers.

SEO & Social:

We will drive traffic and conversions to our website using social media marketing via Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube, and others. We are also exploring SEO and SEM.

Content Marketing:

We consistently release marketing content through our blog that aims to educate our audience about the value that our product provides. Our content marketing efforts aim to influence and persuade readers without having to rely solely on conventional direct selling tactics.

Influencer Marketing:

We will launch an initiative to guest blog articles and features in IoT, home automation, and startup tech publications like TechCrunch, Wired, VentureBeat, and other outlets in our industry.

Use an example business plan to get your information down — make sure to include market research, balance sheet, financial projections, and industry trends.

Competitive Landscape

Primary competitors for Culina include other companies that are currently operating in the home automation and Internet of Things space, such as Nest Labs, Amazon Echo, and Wallflower Labs.

Leading home automation company Nest introduced its first product, Nest Learning Thermostat, in 2011. The company was founded in 2010 by former Apple engineers Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers and is headquartered in Palo Alto, California. Nest was acquired by Google on January 14, 2014, by Google for $3.2 billion and still operates under its own brand identity.

Nest Labs designs programmable, self-learning, sensor-driven, Wi-Fi-enabled thermostats, smoke detectors, and other security systems.

The 3rd generation Nest Thermostat prices at $249; Nest Indoor and Outdoor Cams are $199; and their Smoke & CO Alarm retails for $99.

Key Weaknesses:

After Nest's acquisition, the company has underperformed in sales and fallen below the expectations that Google set for them when it purchased the startup.

Amazon Echo

Amazon Echo, also known as Alexa, is a voice command device powered by artificial intelligence and designed by mega online retailer The smart home hub was initially released in November 2014.

Alexa is a voice-activated virtual assistant housed within the Echo smart speaker. Users simply say her name and then ask a question or give a command.

The Amazon Echo retails for $99 for Amazon Prime members and $170 for everyone else.

However, some users have noted the uneven sound quality and limited “skills” capabilities. Users can also only interact and communicate with Alexa in English and German.

Founded December 1, 2013, Wallflower Labs is a Charleston, MA-based startup that designs an internet-connected smart plug that works with any freestanding plug-in electric stove. The company's founder previously founded Yap — a speech recognition technology that was acquired by Amazon in 2011 to help develop Alexa. The startup has raised a total of $2.5 million from three rounds of equity funding to date, with the most recent funding reported at $1.5 million via a convertible note on August 30, 2016.

The smart plug sounds an alarm and alerts homeowners via smartphone when the stove is turned on, someone forgets to turn it off, when a cooking time expires, or the smoke alarm activates.

Because Wallflower Labs are still in the pre-launch phase, the company has not yet publicly released consumer pricing information.

Unlike Culina, which connects with all smart appliances and cooking devices in the kitchen, Wallflower Labs is solely focused on monitoring stove usage.

How Culina Measures Up:

Competitive Analysis - Competitive Landscape table — included in a business plan template.

Differentiating Factors

Culina maintains a unique competitive advantage over other existing home automation and IoT products in several categories. Our biggest differentiators include:

Diverse Product Capabilities

Culina makes it possible to gain an across-the-board view from an entire network of interconnected devices. Whether they're connected to the refrigerator, gas or electric-powered stove, microwave, or dishwasher, our Smart Plugs can deliver insight into everything from smoke and gas detection, to temperature changes, and usage metrics — regardless of the brand and through a single, user-friendly app.


Our technology is easy to use and doesn't require any technical-savvy. Setup and configuration are simple, users are able to be up and running out of the box in approximately 10 minutes, and software updates are deployed over the air.


Culina is priced below our competitors' products while delivering superior functionality and value. This will be an essential factor in helping us continue to gain market share nationally.

Team Strength Our team is comprised of industry veterans who bring decades of experience to the table across industrial design, mobile tech, cloud-based technology, artificial intelligence, and more.

Our leadership team has a history of starting and leading companies to successful exits and has established valuable relationships with industry leaders along the way that will help us strategically position Culina as a market innovator in the days ahead.

Investment Opportunity

Culina is currently seeking a total of $15M in  Series B equity financing  to fuel the next stage of company growth — including manufacturing, pre-order fulfillment, ongoing development of our platform, and marketing efforts in order to continue expanding the Culina brand. Any remaining funds will be allocated as operating capital.

Why Invest in Culina? With Culina, investors have the opportunity to get in on the ground floor with a company that's positioned to grow into a leading innovator in the home automation and IoT space.

With Culina, we've tapped into something truly extraordinary that's being celebrated by both early adopters and investors alike. With 10,000 units pre-sold and $1.89M in pre-launch revenue , we've already successfully demonstrated validation in the consumer space. With over $5 million in funding secured across several financing rounds, we've already proven that investors believe in our company, our mission, and our ability to succeed.

We've also established a scalable business model and robust product pipeline that will prime us for widespread expansion in the days ahead. We're now seeking investors who share our passion and commitment to pushing the boundaries of what home automation can be and do through nextgen technology.

We're looking forward to working with you in accelerating Culina's growth to become a dominant player in the booming global home automation and IoT industry.

Business plans are essential to any business. We hope this example business plan article guides you through your own business plan process.

In Conclusion

We hope these  business plan  examples will get you started on the right path in getting your business idea into a full-on company. Keep in mind that these startup business plan examples are not a uniform guide for every business, and some information may vary. You may need a 5-year business plan template, or perhaps just some business plan examples for students. Make sure to remember this as you start writing your business plan, and comment below to let us know if these examples of business plans for startups were helpful in your startup journey.

For more helpful founder information: check out our podcast! The No BS version of startup life you've been looking for:  Startup Therapy .

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Venture Capital

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Venture Capital Meaning

Venture capital (VC) refers to a type of long-term finance extended to startups with high-growth potential to help them succeed exponentially. The investors are called venture capitalists who bear the excessive financial risk and provide guidance to startups to attain their objectives. 

In exchange, the investors get ownership in the business and multiple returns for when the company makes it big through public listing, acquisition or merger.

Table of contents

Venture capital explained, stages of venture capital funding, methods of venture capital funding, some historic venture capital examples, exit route for a vc firm, returns for a vc firm, recommended articles, key takeaways.

sample business plan for venture capital funding

Venture capital is crucial for startups and small companies to get funds as they don’t have access to capital markets. Resultantly, such funding has become popular as it provides above-average returns to investors when successful. Many venture capitalists are wealthy investors with finance and expertise. Other sources of VC funding are financial institutions Financial Institutions Financial institutions refer to those organizations which provide business services and products related to financial or monetary transactions to their clients. Some of these are banks, NBFCs, investment companies, brokerage firms, insurance companies and trust corporations. read more , banks, pension funds, and corporations.

Usually, VC investors take this risk with an aim to acquire preferred equity or general equity. When the startup undergoes mergers Mergers Merger refers to a strategic process whereby two or more companies mutually form a new single legal venture. For example, in 2015, ketchup maker H.J. Heinz Co and Kraft Foods Group Inc merged their business to become Kraft Heinz Company, a leading global food and beverage firm. read more , acquisitions Acquisitions Acquisition refers to the strategic move of one company buying another company by acquiring major stakes of the firm. Usually, companies acquire an existing business to share its customer base, operations and market presence. It is one of the popular ways of business expansion. read more , or stock exchange Stock Exchange Stock exchange refers to a market that facilitates the buying and selling of listed securities such as public company stocks, exchange-traded funds, debt instruments, options, etc., as per the standard regulations and guidelines—for instance, NYSE and NASDAQ. read more listing, these shares can be converted to cash with the appreciated share value, giving hefty returns.

A general partner General Partner A general partner (GP) refers to the private equity firm responsible for managing a private equity fund. The private equity firm acts as a GP, and the external investors are limited partners (LPs). read more (GP) manages the VC fund and works on behalf of the VC firm as a partner. GP raises and manages venture funds. Within the startup, the GP makes required investment decisions to help them achieve their goals. In addition, there are limited partners Limited Partners In a limited partnership, two or more individuals form an entity to undertake business activities and share profits. At least one person acts as a general partner against one limited partner who will have limited liability enjoying the benefits of less stringent tax laws. read more (LPs) who commit capital to the venture fund. LPs are mostly institutional investors Institutional Investors Institutional investors are entities that pool money from a variety of investors and individuals to create a large sum that is then handed to investment managers who invest it in a variety of assets, shares, and securities. Banks, NBFCs, mutual funds, pension funds, and hedge funds are all examples. read more . Venture capital firms invest in a startup at a certain stage of the business cycle, such as seeding or early growth. The funds are committed for 5-8 years.

VC funding process follows a systematic approach and goes through different stages mentioned below:

Stage I: Submission of business plan

Firstly, the entrepreneur presents a plan to the venture capitalist to convey the business idea. It could include details on target markets, expected profit range, business goals, and a roadmap to goals. The requisite details are an executive summary of the proposal, forecast financials, competitive scenario. etc. If the VC is attracted to the plan, then the process progresses to the second stage.

Stage II: First meeting among parties

After going through the business plan, the VC calls for a face-to-face meeting with the startup’s management. This meeting is essential because it determines whether the startup will get the business. If all goes well, the parties move ahead.

Stage III: Conducting Due Diligence

This process is a quick evaluation of the references given by business owners about the customer, business strategy evaluation, re-confirmation of debtors Debtors A debtor is a borrower who is liable to pay a certain sum to a credit supplier such as a bank, credit card company or goods supplier. The borrower could be an individual like a home loan seeker or a corporate body borrowing funds for business expansion. read more and creditors Creditors A creditor refers to a party involving an individual, institution, or the government that extends credit or lends goods, property, services, or money to another party known as a debtor. The credit made through a legal contract guarantees repayment within a specified period as mutually agreed upon by both parties. read more , and a quick check on other relevant information exchanged between the two parties.

Stage IV: Finalizing the Term Sheet

After conducting the due diligence, if everything falls in place, the venture capitalist would offer a term sheet. A term sheet Term Sheet A term sheet is an agreement facilitating a fundraising process whereby two parties mutually agree to abide by the mentioned clauses concerning the investment. read more is a nonbinding document that lists the terms & conditions between two parties. It is negotiable and is finalized after all parties agree to it. Post agreement, all legal documents are prepared. After this, the funds are released to the business.

The type of VC funding is based on the money extended at a particular stage of the startup’s development. Venture capital and private equity differ here because they invest in a company at a different stage. VCs invest at the early stages of the startup with the PE firms showing up at a more established stage.

The venture capital funding procedure is completed through the six stages, which are as follows –

Early-stage financing has seed financing, startup financing & first stage financing as three subdivisions. In contrast, expansion financing can be categorized into second-stage financing, bridge financing Bridge Financing Bridge financing is a type of financing that helps with the procurement of short-term loans to meet immediate business needs until long-term financing can be obtained. Such financing is frequently used in times of cash crunch and limited resources, and it usually carries a higher interest rate. read more , and third stage financing or mezzanine financing Mezzanine Financing Mezzanine financing is a type of financing that combines the characteristics of debt and equity financing by granting lenders the right to convert their loan into equity in the event of a default (only after other senior debts are paid off). read more .

Apart from this, second-stage financing is also provided to companies for expanding their business. Bridge financing is generally offered as short-term interest-only finance. It is also provided to assist companies that employ initial public offers Initial Public Offers An initial public offering (IPO) occurs when a private company makes its shares available to the general public for the first time. IPO is a means of raising capital for companies by allowing them to trade their shares on the stock exchange. read more (IPO). VC firms also keep highly liquid investments such as money market assets and cash reserves referred to an as dry powder Dry Powder Dry Powder is cash reserves set aside for contingencies or investment opportunities so that they can be used at the right time. It is also known as reserves set aside for tough times or downfall with the intention of safeguarding the investments made by the investors, thus increasing the investors' faith and providing long-term benefit to the business organization. read more . They are kept as a reserve to meet future obligations.

sample business plan for venture capital funding

Uber has repeatedly raised finance from various venture capitalists in multiple funding rounds. You can take a look at an excerpt from Uber’s financing rounds featuring seed-Series C in the picture above. It received the seed financing of 1.6 million in 2010. After series of monetary influx, Uber finally went public in 2019, closing on the first day with a market cap of $69.7 billion.

Google  in 1999, acquired $25 million from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers and Sequoia Capital. These venture capitalists reaped enormous returns as Google today has become an indispensable part of the internet.

WhatsApp  – Sequoia invested about $8 million in WhatsApp in 2011 and $60 million over the years. It made around $3 billion from WhatsApp. But the VC firm hit the jackpot when WhatsApp got acquired by Facebook for $16 billion, helping Sequoia make many billion bucks.

Sequoia Capital is one of the oldest and largest venture capital firms in the world. It has made billions from funding many startups such as Apple, Google, Zoom, Instagram, Snowflake, etc. As per Forbes , Alfred Lin and Neil Shen of Sequoia group are the top venture capitalists worldwide in 2021. Some of the top names from the list are below.

sample business plan for venture capital funding

Exit routes refer to an event that would wrap a VC deal. At the end of a successful VC deal, the exit route would lead venture capitalists to close their investment and reap profits from it. Usually, an exit route for a venture capital firm is the startup getting any of the following-

Like private equity associates Private Equity Associates A Private Equity Associate assists other senior associates and partners in identifying a well-suited target to invest in and reaping the benefits by selling it at a profit, as well as overseeing due diligence, handling communication, and preparing financial models. read more , there are many jobs for efficient venture capital analysts offering competitive salaries. As per Glassdoor, the average annual salary of a venture capital associate in the US is $83,006. This is because analysts and fund managers play a crucial role in cracking successful VC deals. Suppose their investments hit the right chord, VCs pocket heavy returns. Normally, a VC firm charges around a 2-2.5 % fee from the startup to cover expenses.

Most often, investors also acquire many shares of the startup. When a major event like an IPO occurs, coupled with massive share price appreciation, VCs make heavy profits. Look at the earnings of Google and WhatsApp investors! The annual internal rate of return Internal Rate Of Return Internal rate of return (IRR) is the discount rate that sets the net present value of all future cash flow from a project to zero. It compares and selects the best project, wherein a project with an IRR over and above the minimum acceptable return (hurdle rate) is selected. read more (IRR) ranges between 20-60, much higher than traditional investments. However, not all startups hit it off. As such many VC deals fail terribly, landing investors in severe losses.

Venture capital (VC) is a mode of financing a startup where investors help growth-exhibiting budding companies with long term equity finance. They also provide practical guidance in exchange for a share in their risks as well as rewards. In addition, it ensures a solid capital base for future growth. For example, Xiaomi had received a substantial investment from VC firm 5Y Capital.

Venture capital can be categorized into the following three types: • Early-stage financing – seed financing, startup financing and first-stage financing; • Expansion financing – second-stage financing, bridge financing and third stage financing or mezzanine financing; • Acquisition or buyout financing.

A venture capitalist earns an enormous return on investment in the following three ways: 1. Carry or carried interest: The fund manager many times receives a percentage share in the company’s profit. 2. Management fees: It is charged by the VC firm from the startup for providing their professional management services and to cover off expenses. It is usually 2-2.5%. 3. Gains – Refers to profits made as a shareholder from acquisition/merger or IPO listing of the startup.

This article has been a guide to what is Venture Capital? Here we provide an overview of how it works, the structure of the VC firm, the funding process, and Venture capital exits & returns. You may learn more about Private Equity and Venture Capital from the following articles –

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sample business plan for venture capital funding

Venture Capital Funding Is Not The Only Option For Startups

By Yule Georgieva

Yule Georgieva

Raising money in 2022 was a slog. CB Insights reported a nine-quarter low in Q3 in terms of deal value and a concurrent reduction in the number of deals. Y Combinator released a memo in May warning companies in its network to conserve cash and avoid fundraising if they could. Some startups were able to hold off until things improved. Others had to press on, accepting smaller amounts with investor-friendly terms in order to keep the lights on.

Heading into 2023, the market does not look to be improving, but that doesn’t mean founders should despair. In every crisis lies an opportunity, and this may be a needed reality check for start-ups to reassess precisely what kind of a business they want to build, as that could change their capital strategy.

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Yet a high-growth business that runs in the reds for years, funding its growing burn with larger and larger venture cheques, is not the only path for a new start. 

Another approach is to pursue profitability and then use these retained earnings to invest in further growth at a sustainable rate. In this scenario, companies would raise just enough capital from independent sources, like friends and family or angels, and put all their effort towards profitability by dominating in their core competency. This can help avoid the institutional pressure to grow fast and continue raising funds, and once profitable, companies are in the enviable position of having control of their own destiny. 

This approach involves three key steps: a product strategy, operational excellence and a fundraising plan.

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Product Strategy

A good place to start is to talk to customers. What is the primary value customers get from your product? Once you have a sense of this, lean into it—hard. Make the product even better, focusing on adding value to make your product indispensable. If profitability is the end goal, it is better to be the dominant fish in a small pond than a small fish swimming aimlessly in larger and larger oceans. 

Operational Excellence

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The final step is to identify funding sources. There are ample options outside the traditional VC route. Aside from crowd-funding from the general public on a site like Kickstarter, another common approach is to find angels on Angelist who are accredited and can cut bigger cheques, but who will not have the same pressure to generate returns for LPs as institutional VCs.

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The VC world has many attractions to early ventures, and it can be a feather in a founder’s cap to secure funding from one of the big firms. But especially in the current economic climate, founders should beware that their fundraising plans are not driven by ego but are instead guided by good business strategy. Ultimately, profitability is never a bad state to be in. Bonus if it means retaining more control in-house.

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Business Plan Example and Template

Learn how to create a business plan

What is a Business Plan?

A business plan is a document that contains the operational and financial plan of a business, and details how its objectives will be achieved. It serves as a road map for the business and can be used when pitching investors or financial institutions for debt or equity financing .

Business Plan

A business plan should follow a standard format and contain all the important business plan elements. Typically, it should present whatever information an investor or financial institution expects to see before providing financing to a business.

Contents of a Business Plan

A business plan should be structured in a way that it contains all the important information that investors are looking for. Here are the main sections of a business plan:

1. Title Page

The title page captures the legal information of the business, which includes the registered business name, physical address, phone number, email address, date, and the company logo.

2. Executive Summary

The executive summary is the most important section because it is the first section that investors and bankers see when they open the business plan. It provides a summary of the entire business plan. It should be written last to ensure that you don’t leave any details out. It must be short and to the point, and it should capture the reader’s attention. The executive summary should not exceed two pages.

3. Industry Overview

The industry overview section provides information about the specific industry that the business operates in. Some of the information provided in this section includes major competitors, industry trends, and estimated revenues. It also shows the company’s position in the industry and how it will compete in the market against other major players.

4. Market Analysis and Competition

The market analysis section details the target market for the company’s product offerings. This section confirms that the company understands the market and that it has already analyzed the existing market to determine that there is adequate demand to support its proposed business model.

Market analysis includes information about the target market’s demographics , geographical location, consumer behavior, and market needs. The company can present numbers and sources to give an overview of the target market size.

A business can choose to consolidate the market analysis and competition analysis into one section or present them as two separate sections.

5. Sales and Marketing Plan

The sales and marketing plan details how the company plans to sell its products to the target market. It attempts to present the business’s unique selling proposition and the channels it will use to sell its goods and services. It details the company’s advertising and promotion activities, pricing strategy, sales and distribution methods, and after-sales support.

6. Management Plan

The management plan provides an outline of the company’s legal structure, its management team, and internal and external human resource requirements. It should list the number of employees that will be needed and the remuneration to be paid to each of the employees.

Any external professionals, such as lawyers, valuers, architects, and consultants, that the company will need should also be included. If the company intends to use the business plan to source funding from investors, it should list the members of the executive team, as well as the members of the advisory board.

7. Operating Plan

The operating plan provides an overview of the company’s physical requirements, such as office space, machinery, labor, supplies, and inventory . For a business that requires custom warehouses and specialized equipment, the operating plan will be more detailed, as compared to, say, a home-based consulting business. If the business plan is for a manufacturing company, it will include information on raw material requirements and the supply chain.

8. Financial Plan

The financial plan is an important section that will often determine whether the business will obtain required financing from financial institutions, investors, or venture capitalists. It should demonstrate that the proposed business is viable and will return enough revenues to be able to meet its financial obligations. Some of the information contained in the financial plan includes a projected income statement , balance sheet, and cash flow.

9. Appendices and Exhibits

The appendices and exhibits part is the last section of a business plan. It includes any additional information that banks and investors may be interested in or that adds credibility to the business. Some of the information that may be included in the appendices section includes office/building plans, detailed market research , products/services offering information, marketing brochures, and credit histories of the promoters.

Business Plan Template

Business Plan Template

Here is a basic template that any business can use when developing its business plan:

Section 1: Executive Summary

Section 2: Industry Overview

Section 3: Market Analysis and Competition

Section 4: Sales and Marketing Plan

Section 5: Management Plan

Section 6: Operating Plan

Section 7: Financial Plan

Section 8: Appendices and Exhibits

Related Readings

Thank you for reading CFI’s guide to Business Plans. To keep learning and advancing your career, the following CFI resources will be helpful:

sample business plan for venture capital funding


  1. Sample Business Plan For Venture Capital Funding

    sample business plan for venture capital funding

  2. 🌈 Sample business plan for venture capital funding. Sample business plan for venture capital

    sample business plan for venture capital funding

  3. Business Plan Venture Capital Sample

    sample business plan for venture capital funding

  4. Venture Capital Business Plan Template

    sample business plan for venture capital funding

  5. Business Plan Venture Capital Sample

    sample business plan for venture capital funding

  6. Business Plan Venture Capital Sample

    sample business plan for venture capital funding


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  2. How to Write a Business Plan For Venture Capital in 2023?

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    Aids in obtaining funding:A thorough business plan will increase your chances of obtaining venture capital and bank loans. Aids in managing cash flow:Outlining a cash flow plan is a great way to make educated guesses on sales, costs, expenses, assets you need to buy and debts you have to pay.

  21. Top 4 Business Plan Examples

    Our Complete Business Planning Guide includes concrete business plan examples and samples to help you get started. ... CTO Martin is a Stanford University alumnus with extensive technical expertise and over a decade of experience at venture-backed tech companies. He is responsible for Culina's technical vision, heading up all aspects of our ...

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  23. Venture Capital (VC)

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  25. Business Plan

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