by Andy Moss, Head of Funds – The FSE Group
Setting up your own business, becoming your own boss and turning your idea into reality may seem like a daunting leap, but for some entrepreneurs that leap has paid off. Many ideas have turned into businesses which have gone from strength to strength, growing in size from one or two employees into successful, innovative Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) employing over 100 people.
Is there a particular recipe for success? Is there a reason why some entrepreneurs concepts grow and develop into a successful business whilst others struggle to overcome obstacles and get off the ground? Is there a particular individual mindset which is more prone to success or is it just simply “the right place, the right time?”
Entrepreuners, Their Vision and Journey
It is fair to say that before launching headlong into deciding to scale up their business, entrepreneurs will have conducted market research to ascertain and understand if there is an opportunity to take their business to the next stage of growth.
Business plans will have been written, opportunities and weaknesses identified, and product-market fit achieved, ahead of collating all necessary data to reach out to financial institutions to try and secure funding and propel the concept into a fully operational business. Sounds logical and simple doesn’t it? However, securing the right funding can prove to be one of the trickiest barriers to success.
Securing Funding; From Business Plan To Business Premises, Is Funding Available For All Entrepreneurs?
When looking to get their business ideas off the drawing board and into premises, many entrepreneurs turn to family and friends for their initial capital injection and often tend to have a well-connected business network to help them promote their new venture.
The next logical step is to turn to a local high street lender for advice. However, as a concept or perhaps maybe even a young business, it is unlikely that there will be the business financial history available to secure funding from a traditional high street lender. If this door is temporarily closed, which doors could be open and potentially available to invest in your business concept?
But what if the traditional scenario described above is different and more complicated? Let’s say the budding entrepreneur comes from an under-represented group who may not be privy to similar opportunities compared to their more affluent and well-connected counterparts. What happens if family and friends do not have spare income or savings to invest in the opportunity and what if there is no professional well connected network to give the venture a head start?
It could be plausible that along with securing finance, entrepreneurs from an under-represented group may encounter additional barriers to opportunities; it could be that English is not their first language or that they have experienced discrimination in the past. It does not mean that their business idea carries less merit, just that the means to turn it into a reality could appear somewhat more challenging. Some individuals from a lower socio-economic status have less access to such funds from family for a variety of reasons. It could be that the family income is needed to support other siblings or ageing relatives and therefore not readily available to invest in a potential business opportunity.
Recently a report published by The British Business Bank cited that around 49% of under-represented groups have struggled in the past to raise the finance they need in order to turn their business ideas into reality. This in fact is not limited to start-up businesses. Scale-ups and SMEs have also come across similar barriers to funding as they grow and expand their enterprises. It was cited that the struggle to obtain finance was also a major factor for them stopping work on and continuing with their business idea.
The FSE Group – Who We Are and What We Do
If for whatever reason conventional or even alternative funding has not been successful, The FSE Group may be able to provide funding.
Investing in SMEs who have the potential for significant growth, they understand such funding challenges faced by entrepreneurs and seek to provide funds to bridge the market funding gap.
In recent years, The FSE Group has supported many under-represented groups to help them realise and achieve their growth ambitions.
The group fully understands that each entrepreneur is a unique individual and dedicated Fund Managers spend time to get to know not just the business plans, forecasts and growth of the business, but the person behind that idea, getting to understand what barriers and obstacles they have had to overcome and to help them bring their plans to fruition and help them achieve maximum potential.
For more information of FSE’s funds under management visit: www.thefsegroup.com/overview-of-funds/