April 16, 2015
You have a great idea for a food product or restaurant, now you need to procure funding. Create a business plan and presentation that outlines how much money you need and what it will go towards.

You have a great idea for a food product or restaurant, now you need to procure funding. Create a business plan and presentation that outlines how much money you need and what it will go towards.

Once you have finished Boulder culinary school, do you have an idea of what you want to do with your new degree? Perhaps you have plans of starting your own restaurant or food truck or creating a product line. If this sounds like your dream, do you know how to get there financially? Finding and pitching investors is an incredibly important part of beginning a new food venture. Here are some tips for trying to gain monetary backers:

Know your goal
If you approach an investor and don’t have a clue how much money you need, they will likely not take you seriously. It’s necessary to have an estimate of the amount of funding you’ll need so you can come straight out and ask for it. Investors can then decide if your idea is worth it and go from there. Add your monetary needs into your business plan, which should outline everything about your new project, from the name and logo to costs, a timeline of when it will be up and running and what your hopes are for the future. While real life isn’t quite like Shark Tank, you will need to be convincing and knowledgeable about your idea and business plan in order to successfully procure funding and start a good relationship with investors.

Make a presentation
Having a conversation with an investor may be enough to get them interested in your project, but adding visual aids and speaking points will really help to seal the deal. Once you have decided the funding amount you need, channel that information into a few infographics. Using charts and graphs can assist potential investors in understanding why you require money and what it will be used for. This preparation will also show them that you are a serious business person on the path to success. Be sure to include your company or product logo throughout the presentation so it sticks in the viewers mind.

If you don’t have the experience to create an aesthetically pleasing slide show or logo, talk with a friend who has graphic design or public speaking knowledge. He or she may be able to help you to create a professional-looking visual aid, increasing your chances of gaining investors and funding. Practice what you’re going to discuss while using the presentation you’ve made. Be sure to touch on what your idea is, how much it will cost, and a timeline of when you plan to implement the funding and how. It’s also very useful to have profit projections in order to show the investors what they would be earning back and when.

Find possible funding sources
If you are just starting out, figuring out where to look for funding may be your most difficult task. You know what you want your new venture to be like and what timing you hope to complete progressive steps in, but you might not have a clue where to get the money you need to get there. Start by considering who you know in the culinary industry. While taking cooking classes in Boulder, you likely met people who might be interested in becoming investors, or who would know people that would.

You could even consider making a Kickstarter or other crowd funding campaign to show potential investors that there is a market and consumer interest for your product or dining place. Plus, you can start raising money that way too. While you can go to a bank and take out a loan, gaining funding through investors won’t start your new venture off in debt right away. It’s important to remember you don’t (and likely won’t) need to get all your funds from one place. Try asking multiple investors to each supply some money, instead of looking for a huge investment from one individual or company.