David Williams, Director, Franchising at RBS suggests how you can improve your chances of success with your business and the bankDave Williams 4

When seeking finance from a bank it is important to demonstrate a good understanding of your franchise business and its future success. The quality and scope of your business plan is crucial.

When approaching a bank it is important to present a robust and detailed business plan outlining your business goals, performance and management experience. Highlight what key personal skills you have:, team skills, leadership, people skills and sales experience are likely to add real value as well as showing a proven track record.

Demonstrate your understanding of the market and highlight your experience. Banks will look at the complete package including financial projections and what plans you have in place should things take a turn.

Financial projections are the cornerstone of any business plan. They provide an insight into how you are going to pay the business bills together with your own requirements. Your financial provider wants to see real life targets that are achievable. Your Franchisor can be a great source of information by clarifying if your projections are realistic and remember to speak to existing franchisees in the network as they have all been in the same position as you.

The ability of the business to pay you an adequate remuneration is often overlooked within the business plan. This is the amount that the franchisee will need to take from the business to meet their living expenses, household bills and spending money. In order to make an accurate assessment of the amount required, a detailed income and expenditure statement should be completed. A detailed breakdown of all loans, credit cards and mortgages, together with other family income, will assist and ensure nothing is missed. The bank will also ask to see these along with copies of your personal bank statements.

Finally, give careful consideration to your local market and details of competition. In-depth research should be undertaken to understand what makes them tick and in what areas you can compete. This can be ascertained by looking on the web or making calls as a prospective customer. In many instances, competition can be a positive factor.

RBS has a network of accredited Franchise Managers, who are based across the UK. The have all completed a training course, have a detailed understanding of franchising and could guide franchisees through the process of raising bank finance.

To find out how RBS can help you, contact Dave Williams on 07770 733376 or e-mail dave.williams@rbs.co.uk