Business Plans Investing and Risk Analysis Investment

Business Plans

Investing and Risk Analysis

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Investment decisions involve consideration of both quantitative and qualitative factors. The focus of business classes, many times in on the quantitative portions of the plans. However, these “forecasts” do not predict the future, or the success of any business endeavor. At best, they demonstrate that the prospective business has at least given operations some thought, but they do not ensure the success of a business. Investment analysis involves consideration of both the financial statements and qualitative factors that hinge on the edge of being called “intuitive” factors in the business plan analysis. The following will discuss the “intuitive” factors involved in assigning a discount rate to three business plans, based on the perceived risks involved in each of them.

Ice Dreams is a unique idea that is built on the concept of an already popular consumer commodity, Sno Cones. According to the business plan, the consumer will see the difference between the traditional sno cone and shaved ice. The product sounds superior, but only if it is marketed correctly. The real risk with this business plan is that consumers will not differentiate the product. This plan might be more convincing if the writer did some research into the volume of its three major competitors. Another concern is that the business plans to target the low to mid range income market. I think that Sno Cones already has that covered. This end of the market is most sensitive to shocks in the economy. This product might be better if it were marketed to the mid to high end market as a luxury item.

RJ Wagner and Associates has several key strengths. The first is that is focuses on the high-end market in a growing area of Texas. This company has moderate risk associated with shocks to the housing market and a recession could affect its projected forecasts, but it will have the ability to diversify if this happens. The chosen market segment will be less reactive4 to shocks than the lower income housing market.

The Interstate Travel Center will take advantage of the business being generated by NAFTA. Research conducted as part of the business plan indicates that the industry and the need for the product is growing. This business plan has an excellent growth strategy. The location of the center is excellent with little local competition. The travel-based retail industry is based on local competition. The writers of this plan understand this factor and have chosen a site that is accessible, visible and where they can dominate the market.

These three business plans provide the investor into the reasoning of the seeker. The Interstate Travel Center has the highest funding needs and has the greatest amount of capital at risk. However, due to its excellent strategy and understanding of the market that it intends to serve, this is the least risky of the enterprises and would be assigned the better of the discount rates. The second runner-up would be the real estate brokerage firm. Current conditions in the housing market would be the reasoning for this placement. Although national media claims that the situation is improving, the housing market has seen its ups and downs in the past few years. The real estate company will use diversification as a hedge against shocks in the economy. This is an excellent strategy, but another major downturn could affect their forecasts. The shaved ice business plan is the riskiest of the plans and would receive the worst discount rating. There is no proven market and they plan to target a sector of the market that is most sensitive to shocks. They claim that their product is superior and differentiated from its sno cone competition. If this is the case, then they should take advantage of this differentiation and go after a higher end market. This plan has too many assumptions that are not founded in research. Even though this plan would have the least amount of capital at risk, it has the lowest chance for success.

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