THINKING OF STARTING A SMALL BUSINESS? Martha D. Soffer U.S. Small Business Administration (212)

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1 THINKING OF STARTING A SMALL BUSINESS? Martha D. Soffer U.S. Small Business Administration (212)

2 REASONS FOR STARTING A SMALL BUSINESS? 2

3 REASONS FOR STARTING A BUSINESS Make Money! Independence no more bosses! Downsized sick of layoffs Age, Sex, Race, Immigrant, Ethnic Discrimination Family Entrepreneurship History Specialty, Unique Ideas, Consultant, Tons of Prior Experience Doing Your Own Thing 3

4 IS ENTREPRENEURSHIP FOR YOU? Starting a business requires planning, creativity, hard work, knowledge, experience, risk and some form of financial investment 4

5 Entrepreneurs share common traits. What are these traits? 5

6 ENTREPRENEURSHIP TRAITS Creative Inquisitive Driven Goal-oriented Independent Calculated risk taker Committed Self-starter Hard-worker Strong management skills Self confidence 6

7 Questions to Ask Before Starting 1. Why am I starting a business? 2. Am I prepared to spend the time and money needed? 3. How can I utilize my prior experience? 4. What kind of business do I want? 5. What s my product/service? 6. Who s my target market? 7. Who s my competition? 8. What s unique about my idea? 9. How much money to set up? 10. How long can I finance the business until I make a profit? 7

8 Questions to Ask Before Starting 11.Will I need a loan? 12.Pricing my product/service? 13.How will I market my business. attract and retain customers? 14. What legal structure will I take? 15. How will I manage my business: employees? 16. Where will it be located? 17. How many employees to start? 18. Who are my suppliers? 19.What insurance do I need? 20. What taxes are required? 8

9 WHY DO BUSINESSES FAIL? 9

10 WHY BUSINESSES FAIL Insufficient Start-up Cash Need 6-12 months working capital Mismanagement of Funds Poor Business Planning Poor Management Skills Poor Bookkeeping-Accounting 10

11 WHY BUSINESSES FAIL Lack of Prior Industry Experience Unhappy personnel/rude/bad attitudes/poor customer service Insufficient help Employee theft Inflexible Business Model 11

12 THE #1 REASON FOR BUSINESS FAILURE?? 12

13 THE #1 REASON FOR BUSINESS FAILURE? Not having enough money to operate until profitable! 13

14 GETTING A LOAN (Basic Requirements) Good credit -(F.I.C.A ) 20% to 50% cash equity Good debt to equity ratio (debt no more than 4 times your equity) 3 years of Federal Tax returns Business Plan: A written document conveying how you will manage & operate a successful, profitable business. Includes financial projections Financing 6-12 months expenses 14

15 SBA FINANCING PROGRAMS 7(a) loans to $5,000,000 SBA may guarantee up to 85% of the loan Competitive interest rates Typically terms 5-7 years Go directly to SBA lender with your business plan or visit SBA Resource Partner SCORE, SBDC, WBC Microloans up to $50,000 15

16 TYPES OF BUSINESS Start-up Business It s all up to you. Need to establish suppliers, reputation, customer base, Purchase an Existing Business Comes with an existing reputation and existing customers. Also possible liabilities and credit issues Franchise No flexibility whatsoever. 16

17 BUSINESS TAXES Federal Taxes Income tax Self-employment tax Taxes for employers/payroll Excise taxes Guide to Business Taxes State Income Taxes Sales Taxes Health Care Act costs. (Your legal structure will determine tax forms). 17

18 BUSINESS STRUCTURES Sole Proprietorship Partnerships Corporations ( C and S ) Limited Liability Company (LLC) 18

19 BUSINESS STRUCTURE (SOLE PROPRIETOR) --Generalizations-- Simplest and cheapest form to establish and operate After expenses, net profit taxed at personal income tax rate, Schedule C tax form attached to your Registered with the County Choose a business name (d.b.a). Must register 3-copies of notarized Business Certificate Blumberg X- 201 at County Clerk, $130 in NYC) 19

20 BUSINESS STRUCTURE (CORPORATIONS) --Generalizations-- Corporation is a separate legal entity from the people that own it. Registered with the State. The corporation, not the owner, enters into business deals, owns property, borrows money. Therefore, you and your personal assets are protected from liability if company cannot repay obligations. *Caution owners still personally sign for loans and are liable to repay loans and taxes. 20

21 BUSINESS STRUCTURE (C CORPORATION) --Generalizations-- Corporation pays taxes directly Separate entity from shareholder, corporation must pay taxes on income left over after expenses Taxed twice once as a corporation, second time as individual on salary, dividends or upon liquidation Good for larger money making co. 21

22 BUSINESS STRUCTURE (S CORPORATION) --Generalizations-- Liability protection of corporation. Pays taxes like a sole proprietor or partnership, at personal tax rate All shareholders are U.S. citizens Less taxes than a C corporation Limited benefit deductions Works well for smaller companies, no more than 75 shareholders 22

23 BUSINESS STRUCTURE (LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY (LLC)) Corporation/partnership hybrid More flexible than S Corp Limited shareholders have no active role in management, good for investors Liability protection of corporation Taxed at personal partnership tax Complicated and costly filing, requires expensive publication print announcements 23

24 LIMITED LIABILITY COMPANY (Professional) A Professional Limited Liability Company is an unincorporated business organization of one or more professionals. Owners are members, not shareholders, and have a limited liability for the contractual obligations of the business. Attorney, licensed physicians, architects, etc. as designated in Title 8 of the NYS Education Law. 24

25 BEFORE STARTING Acquire experience Develop a business plan Determine customer needs Find proper location Study the competition Adapt a mentor (SBA Resource Partner) Save your pennies Take entrepreneurial training or 25

26 BEFORE STARTING Know government rules, licensing/permits/regulations ( ( ( Consult accountants/lawyers and industry professionals Apply for low interest SBA 7(a), Express or microloan 26

27 START UP BASICS Need good credit for loans Experian, TransUnion, Equifax NYS sales tax authorization Publication 750 ( ) sales/pub750.pdf Employer ID E.I.N Number IRS Form SS4 ( ) 27

28 BEFORE STARTING: VISIT SBA Resource Partner Local Resources FREE business advice business plan development financial projections loan packaging services Visit SBA Resource Partners: SCORE: Small Business Development Ctrs (SBDC): Women Business Centers (WBC): 28

29 BEFORE STARTING FREE ASSISTANCE: U.S. Small Business Administration and SBA Resource Partners Click on Local Resources Telephone:

30 FOR FURTHER ASSISTANCE CONTACT THE U.S. SMALL BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION NEW YORK DISTRICT OFFICE 26 Federal Plaza, Room 3100 NY, NY (212)

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