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Duquesa Marketing Newsletter – March 2012

DUQUESA MARKETING NEWSLETTER                   March 2012
How To Start a Gourmet Food Product Business (or Any Product) on a Budget
 
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Duquesa Quote of the Month:
“When work is a pleasure, life is a joy! When work is a duty, life is a slavery”.
 
Maksim Gorky
Russian Writer
Tip of the Month:
Learn the difference between convergent and divergent products. One can fill a small niche, the other will create
new markets.
 

The first issue we see nascent entrepreneurs almost universally attempt to address is the perceived need for working capital. When we ask how much investment they believe is required to get their product to market, they never can justify what they identify as their magic number. I have yet to read a business plan that can justify the assumptions that are utilized to support the capital investment being sought, ever, and I read dozens of business plans each month.

My consulting firm reviews hundreds of new product ideas every year. Many have wonderful commercial prospects. However, almost none of the entrepreneurs offering these opportunities for funding have considered all of the possible avenues available to launch their idea. Funding is the “Holy Grail” in the eye of most entrepreneurs, and yet, a capital raise is the single hardest route they can attempt to utilize.

Investors, unless family or friends, demand a very high level of due diligence before they will stage a capital investment. Strong management, a clearly identifiable Unique Selling Proposition (USP), first mover advantage and a 35% return on invested capital kicking in between months 24 and 36 of operation are the basic guidelines typically utilized when underwriting opportunities. These are standards that very few entrepreneurs and inventors can achieve.

There are many ways to “bootstrap” new products or services before seeking a financing round. They are not glamorous, more like the old parable of the tortoise and hare. These strategies require the oldest trait known to inventive man: simple hard work!