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Starting a new business


Starting a new business can be a daunting prospect for most people, but believe it or not it's not that difficult.

1. Incorporate

If your company is not a sole propeitership or partnership then you are going to need to register it. This will make the company a legal entity, and reduce your liability. For example, if your company is a partnership and it gets sued, then so do you!

In the United Kingdom registrations are governed by Companies House, which is a government agency that allows you to register ltd and llc companies. Once incorporated you will need to send Companies House an annual summary of your accounts and also information about the key members of your company (directors and shareholders). Failure to send this information can result in a hefty fine.

2. Business Plan

A business plan is perhaps the most important factor in starting any new company. This details what you are going to do, and how you are going to do it. If you intend to borrow money as start up capital, then this is going to be first document your bank manager will want to see. Never underestimate the importance of a well laid out and professional looking plan, however accept that somethings are unknown and while it is important, don't spend too much time crafting it.
 
Anyone who is going to be leading you money cares more about the numbers than anything else, they will want to know how many you expect to sell in the first year, what your profit margins are and how you intend to grow the business.

3. Certification and Trade Memberships

Since your company has no previous trading record a certification can greatly help in gaining those first, important, customers. Small businesses should start out with a simple and cheap certification like the well respected IC9200 Small Business Certification, which costs less than $500.

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