The FT Essential Guide to Writing a Business Plan How to win backing to start up or grow your business

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  • Edition: 2nd
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2015-11-02
  • Publisher: FT Press
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Supplemental Materials

What is included with this book?

  • The New copy of this book will include any supplemental materials advertised. Please check the title of the book to determine if it should include any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.
  • The eBook copy of this book is not guaranteed to include any supplemental materials. Typically, only the book itself is included. This is true even if the title states it includes any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.


In one engaging, outcome-oriented book, The FT Essential Guide to Writing a Business Plan gives you:

  • The essential knowledge you need to write a winning business plan – quickly and without fuss
  • Guidance on how to focus throughout on the plan’s purpose – to win backing
  • Samples of what a good plan looks like, so you can benchmark your own as you write it
  • Checklists, tips, examples and milestones to ensure you’re on target
  • Prompts to reflect on, evaluate and learn from your experience

With advice that’s instantly applicable, whether your business is a start-up or a more established company looking to grow, this is the one guide you need to create a credible and persuasive plan.

Table of Contents




Part 1: Preparing your plan


Chapter 1 - Essential preparation




Plans for SMEs


Part 2: Writing your plan


Chapter 2 - The business


Business mix by segment

Segmentation in a start-up


Chapter 3 - Market demand

Market size

Market growth

Market demand for a start-up

Market demand risks and opportunities


Chapter 4 - Competition

Your competitors

Competitive intensity

Competition in a start-up

Industry competition risks and opportunities


Chapter 5 - Strategy

Competitive position


Strategy in a start-up

Strategic risks and opportunities


Chapter 6 - Resources



Operations and capital expenditure

Resource risks and opportunities


Chapter 7 - Financials and forecasts

Historic financials

Market-driven sales forecasts

Competition-driven margin forecasts

Funding the plan

Full financial forecasts

Forecasts in a start-up

Financial risks and opportunities


Chapter 8  - Risk, opportunity and sensitivity

Meet the Suns and Clouds chart

What the suns and clouds tell you

Sensitivity testing


Chapter 9 - Conclusion


Executive summary

Investment highlights


Part 3: Using your plan



Chapter 10 - Pitching your plan

Focusing the content

Using PowerPoint

Delivering the message


Chapter 11 - Setting targets

Choosing key performance indicators

Setting milestones


Chapter 12 - Performing to plan

Monitoring your plan

Appraising managerial performance

Evaluating your plan


Epilogue: Beware these characters!



Appendix A: Deriving competitive position

Appendix B: Structured interviewing of customers

Appendix C: An example business plan

Appendix D: Further reading




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