We hosted our second installment of the Investment Support Webinar Series titled ‘Investment Readiness’. Alan Tudhope, one of our Regional Investment Managers walked us through the process of investment from enquiry to due diligence. This is seen as a critical time for most, as you’ll either have all of the documentation prepared and ready or you won’t, which will separate you from either getting investment or not.
Listen to the webinar or read below to find out just what you need to comply with the due diligence checks that social investors put each potential client through. Of course there may be more required but these are the basics that should get the conversation started, and your business on its way to landing needed investment.
Here are the 5 things your business needs to be investment ready
Can you articulate your business clearly, it’s social purpose and activities that help bring the social mission to life? How do these activities create revenue to make you a sustainable business? It’s all about story telling, and the audience you’re telling that story to. Make sure that you know why your business exists, you know the ins and outs of who you are helping and have a clear idea of the project you’d like to fund.
Ideally any Funder would like to see historical financials and a financial forecast. We always ask to see 3-years of managerial accounts as well as a financial forecast for the next year ahead. Some of you business owners may not be sustainable yet, and don’t worry. The goal is always to be focused on a trajectory of consistent, sustainable revenue so that you may not have to rely on financing in the future.
Do you have a Board of Directors who can help advise you? A lot of times we see sole Directors, and this simply is not convincing enough to invest in. You need you have at least 2 Directors. Every Funder wants to know that you have advisors who can help take you to the next phase your social business is aiming for. This is also relevant for grant opportunities, as most grant funders will turn you away without 2 Directors and 2 Signatories on your bank account.
The big question: how will you repay the debt financing? We always ask our potential clients this question up front, with the intention for the potential client to understand that their business needs to be able to service the debt for us to invest in them.
We do realise that all businesses are in a different place. Most social businesses are really focused on their beneficiaries and delivering the services their organisation provides, which means there just isn’t the time to sit down and create a cashflow forecast. We completely understand as well that not everyone is an accountant or marketer. Should you not have any of the documents we’ve talked about it would be helpful for you to you to consider applying for the Reach Fund. This opportunity provides grant support to charities and social enterprises who want to take on social investment. If you are looking for more resources and other potential funders in your region, we would highly recommend using Good Finance as a tool to point you in the right direction.
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