Viable Business Guidelines

EXECUTIVE SUMMARY
Your executive summary, which can also serve as your cover letter, gives a brief
explanation of the contents of your business plan in about one or two pages. The executive
summary should include:
• Owner’s name and credentials
• Products and/or services that your business plans to offer
• Target market that you plan to reach
• Competition for business
• Amount of money needed to start your business
• Terms of how any loan will be repaid
• Length of time it will take to repay any loans incurred
If you have company stationary, it is nice to put your executive summary on it. If not, be
sure to include your contact information in the header. Since this is the first part of the document
that any lender will review before making a decision to lend you any money for starting your
business, the opening paragraph should list the business owner’s name and any experience that
you have in the line of business that you are pursuing and the purpose of requesting a loan.
The next paragraph should briefly mention your markets and your customers. Be sure to
include key facts about your competition.
In the next paragraph, mention how much money you would like to finance and the terms
(how many years) you anticipate needing to pay back the loan. List the sources of income that
will be used for repaying the loan.
Also, be sure to include how much you are investing in the business yourself and where
that money will come from. This is usually collateral, which may include both business and
personal assets. (If you don’t believe in your business plan enough to have some “skin in the
game,” how will you be able to convince others to do so?)
In the last paragraph of this section of your business plan, tell the lender the primary
contact and be sure to give contact information, including phone number and an e-mail address.
Be sure to include all signatures and typed names at the closing of your executive
summary. Before you give this letter or any other portion of the business plan to anyone else to
review, be sure to check for errors. (You may want to get someone else to look over it for clarity
and correctness.)

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