The first step in applying is to review the attached brochure to decide whether the proposed project appears to you to be a good fit for the Fund.
The next step in applying is to contact the Executive Director Hazel Corcoran, firstname.lastname@example.org, to discuss your project. She will be able to give you an indication of the availability of funds and the likelihood of whether or not your co-op is a good candidate for a Fund investment.
After this initial discussion, an application in the form of a business plan with the following components is submitted.
Feasibility Study/ Business Plan Requirements
The following is a brief outline of the information required in the completed plan. Of course depending on the proposed business the scope and amount of work will greatly vary from project to project. The methodology and approach is at the discretion of the proponents and the contracted developer. However, whatever approach is used the outcome must result in the following information with sufficient depth to evaluate the projects viability and to implement the project if approved.
1. Title page
Includes the date and your co-op’s name and address.
2. Table of contents
3. Business concept
A clear description of your business and the co-op’s organization, its past history, the type of product or service it will market and where.
What, where and how big is your target market? Who is your competition? What share of the market do they have? How can you improve on their product or service? Why are people going to buy your product over theirs?
5. Marketing Strategy
What price will you charge? How will you advertise and promote your co-op (posters, a grand opening, newspaper or radio ads)? What are your unique selling features (price, service, accessibility, etc.)? How will you get your product to market and ensure repeat customers?
6. Management and organization
- Outline the co-op’s structure (responsibilities of members, board of directors and management), including how key management duties will be carried out (by an appointed manager or shared among the members with outside assistance).
- Detail qualifications and experience of individual members of the management team or outside assistance.
- Outline keys steps in start-up plan.
- Describe how the co-op will provide its product or service.
- Identify equipment, facilities, how the work will be organized and how long each task will take.
- Identify raw materials and supplies required and secured suppliers
8. Financial data
- Project your start-up costs
- Complete a break-even analysis, clearly identifying and justifying your cost and margin assumptions.
- Complete 3 year pro forma income statements and balance sheets. (Should the
project not show profitability within the 3 years please extend the
projections until the project reaches profitability.)
- Complete 3 year cash flow projections with a monthly cash flow for the first year and during project start- up.
- Outline sources of financing and their uses.
- Indicate the minimum investment required of each member.