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If you’re an Alberta entrepreneur wanting to invest in restaurants, you’ve got a lot of legwork to do before you write your business plan. Successful entrepreneurs in Alberta business understand the value of thorough research and the necessity of writing a detailed, extensive business plan – this plan becomes your road map, it will guide you through start-up straight through to day to day operations, finances, and marketing. But before you get started on a business plan, you must figure out if becoming a restauranteur is the right path for you. Once you’re certain that you want to invest in Alberta restaurants, you’ll need to decide on a franchise or independent restaurant – this choice has a major impact on your business plan. Once you know which way you’re going with your restaurant, we’ll sit down with you to offer our guidance and expertise on starting and writing your business plan.

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Your business plan will determine if your concept is actually viable, which is particularly crucial to investors and financers – they want to know that you’ve done your homework, that your plan is solid and workable. Start by reaching out to the restaurant community (or if you’re going the franchise route, talk to other franchisees) – you’re not opening a restaurant in a void, you’re becoming part of a community, establishing relationships in that community is essential to your success and their lessons learned will help you.

Working with a graphic designer to create a brand and logo will help your readers understand how you’re niching your restaurant and what your concept is, although you’ll also want to describe this to get your reader excited. Discuss your inspiration, your food, your concept, and your serving style – tell your reader what will make your restaurant a success. If you’re going the independent route, your menu and décor are the most important aspects and you should include a mockup of the menu design, a mood board for décor, and marketing collateral. Don’t forget to include prices based on a cost analysis and a description of your restaurants target demographic – Who will eat there? What do they do? How old are they? What’s their income level? How will your concept attract them? Include potential location options and what makes them ideal, as well as a market analysis that includes local economic conditions and who your competitors are. From here, you can segue into your marketing and publicity plans – how you’re going to build and maintain interest, momentum, and ongoing marketing.

Next, you’ll want to include an executive summary of your management team. This is your opportunity to highlight your team’s experience and expertise, it’s where you demonstrate how strong your team is and how prepared you are for running a restaurant. You can include your specialists and consultants in this section too, since they’ll make up part of your team (i.e. architects, designers, contractors, lawyers, accountants, and marketers). It’s also important to discuss your business structure – how it will look and why.

Lastly, you’ll need to work with an experienced accountant (someone who’s worked with restaurants) to create realistic financial projections. In particular, you’ll need an estimated profit and loss statement (3-5 years), a break even analysis, and a capital requirements budget. You can include any supporting documents in an appendix.

At Cormode & Dickson we specialize in restaurant construction, expansion, and renovation – we’ve got the expertise you need to start your restaurant in Alberta, contact us today to discuss your project.