Business Ownership: Launch with confidence

Launch with confidence

You’re ready to get to market and start building customer relationships. As your business debuts, your challenges will likely include funding, talent, money management and market share growth. Your need for cash may outpace your access to it. Being undercapitalized can mean scaling back your business plans and adjusting your strategy.

Questions and answers

Q: What are my financing options?

Based on your business model, there are several financing options and cash sources available. Do your due diligence to determine which is best: mezzanine financing, bank financing, convertible debt, straight equity. When tackling financing there are myriad issues involved: corporate finance, tax, accounting, and legal. No one has all the answers, so your team of advisors is critically important here.


Q: How is my leadership role evolving?

Remember that a founding entrepreneur can’t do it all. By understanding your blind spots and putting your ego aside, you will enable yourself to hire as needed to build a capable team.


Q: Have I revisited my tax structure?

As your strategy or ownership changes so may your tax structure. And as your company grows your regulatory footprint will change significantly. Expansion into multiple state (and even internationally) makes taxation much more complicated. Entity type has ramifications for cash flow, regulatory burden, and eventual exit from the business, so it should be revisited often as the business grows and strategies evolve.

Best practices for owners of growth stage businesses

People, process, and technology

People

As the business owner, you need to be able to focus on what you are good at and start building a team around you to grow the business. This need will only become more pressing as you grow.

Best practice

Outsourcing solutions may provide you the ability to afford more expertise than you could on a full-time basis. For example, many companies at this point cannot afford a full-time tax professional on staff. By outsourcing these services, you can make sure that you aren’t making decisions with surprising consequences.


Process

By planning for various scenarios and the actions you would take accordingly, the organization can sharpen its focus on short-, medium- and long-term goals.

Best practice

Develop a strategic planning framework. In addition to the benefits of formalizing objectives, it will also help to create value as sales start to come in the door, decentralizing the knowledge so it is not tied only to the entrepreneur. Not many companies have the expertise to accomplish this effectively without outside assistance. An advisor who specializes in strategic planning can help.


Technology

You start to have access to data that can guide decision-making and help you predict various factors that influence your business.

Best practice

Quick access to timely data can help you not only understand your financial performance but also changing trends. This will allow you to prioritize investments and better understand the customer attributes that create your margin. This can also provide valuable information about win rate and what’s working in sales.

Tax tips

Consider the implications of entity type

Entity selection can become an important and strategic decision throughout the life of the business. Some types of taxation may allow earlier utilization of losses while others can allow better current cash flow. Apply your company’s strategic plan so you don’t make this decision in a vacuum.

Explore all five stages of the business owner lifecycle

  1. STARTUP
  2. LAUNCH
  3. GROWTH
  4. MATURITY
  5. TRANSITION

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This article was written by RSM US LLP and originally appeared on Feb 08, 2023.
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