Subscribe Blog

Oct 17

C & G - Seddon's Newest Bar and Restaurant

Posted by Ross Griffiths on Thursday, October 17, 2019

Yes, you read that right the first time around - C & G is back in action and under new ownership and management!

We have the pleasure of introducing you all to one of our newest clients and also a true long standing monument of Seddon. Renovated and rejuvenated, new ownership has breathed fresh life into the bar and restaurant.

C & G is serving fantastic craft beer and an extensive range of beautiful wines with delicious food in its bright inside bar-lounge and gigantic, sun soaked beer garden - perfect for arvo drinks this Spring. Also a big congratulations to Cross Creations for the fantastic landscaping job, it looks fantastic!

Not only will we be handling C & G’s accounts and finances but we’ve also aided them in setting up their point of sales and financial software to ensure they have the most user friendly system possible, but also the most powerful to fuel their growth moving forwards.

Lets take a look at some of these systems.

First things first - Kounta.

I’m sure some of you are familiar with Kounta already. It is a staff friendly point of sales (POS) software system - easy to use and manage, fully customize-able and fast! The ability to also install the app onto any smart device allows you to process payments or take orders from anywhere.

The most powerful function of Kounta is arguably its ability to generate in depth reports. You can track key metrics in real time and from anywhere. Kounta can give you deep insight into your sales, and you can track a huge range of information to help you understand your business better. These reports can even be exported and input into business intelligence to help deeper define how your business is operating from the day to day, to the growth it has throughout the year.

Kounta users can be confident making quick and informed decisions for their business!

Next up is ReceiptBank.

ReceiptBank is one of the easiest ways to stay on top of your bookkeeping. This app stores your receipts and analyzes the information on them and categorizes it accordingly. Making it easy to export this information into Xero or your accounting software of choice, which it connects seamlessly with!

ReceiptBank is safe and secure and utilizes cloudbased storage so you can always access it from any device at any time.

You can even link your suppliers directly with your account, meaning any receipts are acquired from the app and stored for your convenience.

Then there is Tyro.

Tyro provides fast, integrated and reliable EFTPOS Merchant Services for your business. Tyro even synchronizes with ReceiptBank allowing every transaction to be tracked and stored instantaneously and digitally.

You can monitor your EFTPOS transactions in real time, and transactions take less than 1.6 seconds to process. Forget about cash transactions when you have EFTPOS systems this swift!

Tyro is easy to set up and reliable with 99.9% uptime with 3G backup and dual live data centres.

Tyro is definitely more than ideal for hospitality businesses with its fast and seamless transaction capabilities and that is exactly why we’ve recommended them to the team at C & G.

Lets go into the Accounting and Bookkeeping services we will also be providing our friends at C & G

Xero advice and services.

We’ve been providing many businesses with our expert Xero advice for years now, and are Gold Standard Partners with Xero - you can bet we are going to assist the team at C & G with their Xero setup and provide continuous advice and help with any Xero queries moving forward.

Xero is run in the cloud, so the information you deal with is always live, current and up-to-date. It also means we share the same information; we’re on hand with advice when you need it. You can also access and easily use Xero when you’re out and about as you can run it on your Smartphone.

We’ve set up their Xero so that they experience maximum efficiencies. As part of the set up we:

· Established their Xero File.

· Merge Debtors, Creditors, Contacts & Payroll from their current system.

· Trained the team in how to use it.

· Will be on hand to quickly deal with your queries and questions.

· Show new ways Xero can help them. Xero advantages include:

· No installation or ongoing upgrades.

· No file backups to send.

· We both access the same software and share the same information online.

Xero integrates with over 300 business applications, so it can be tailored to the way they do business and to how their business needs change in the future. These include CRM, Job Costing, Stock Control, Point of Sale and HR Management, to name a few.

Bookkeeping services

By The Numbers has recently established a dedicated bookkeeping service (due to popular request) which we will be providing for C & G.

Under the oversight, direction and ongoing monitoring and management by one of our senior Yarraville based By The Numbers accountants, our newest member Louie will be providing these following services below:

· Processing and reconciling sales and purchases

· Supplier payment runs

· Bank and credit card reconciliations

· Balance sheet reconciliations

· Fixed asset maintenance

· Payroll, super & payroll tax requirements

· Preparation of management reports

· Query management in relation to the above.

The combination of the software and systems in place at C & G make providing and managing these services as efficient as you can get!

Financial and tax advice services

We will also be handling and assisting C & G’s tax accounts. Ensuring that they meet obligations and due dates and are up to date with all of the Australian Taxation Office’s procedures, due dates, functions and any news or changes that are initiated.

We will be completing and lodging their BAS and also their Income Tax Returns as well as providing them with all the information they need to stay on top of their taxes and maximize their savings throughout the year.

So head on over to C & G and introduce yourself to the lovely and fantastic team and enjoy yourselves a lovely sunny afternoon session in the beer garden with the family.

Jul 26

Data Security

Posted by Ross Griffiths on Friday, July 26, 2019

Are you being Data Smart with your Smart Phone?

Recently, the new shiny iPhone XS and XR entered the market.

For all the Apple lovers out there, this might mean being the first to wrap your hands around the irresistibly smooth all-glass design, or finally upgrading your old glitchy iPhone to the new model.

If this is you, I’m guessing you’re focused on the opportunity to start afresh, buy a new case, clear all those apps cluttering your current device, and start playing with its new features. Right?

But have you considered the security aspects?

According to online security software vendor, Norton, the scary reality is that 978 million people in 20 countries were affected by cybercrime in 2017. In New Zealand and Australia, one in four small businesses experienced a cyber-attack or hacking attempt.

“It’s an unfortunate fact that the impact of cybercrime is a reality for all businesses,” Xero Head of Security, Paul Macpherson, said at the recent Xerocon conference in Brisbane. “We continually remind all of our customers – small businesses, accountants and bookkeepers – to take precautions to keep their data safe from hackers.”

Sure, you’ll be eager to try the cool Face ID feature and of course you wouldn’t dream of breaking your shiny new phone. But are you mindful of how you’ll keep its contents safe too?

Obtaining a new phone is the perfect opportunity to get everything set up correctly right from the start. And if you don’t plan to upgrade your mobile phone, there’s no time like the present to make changes.


While many of us are looking for convenience of easy-to-find or easy-to-remember passwords, in reality you’re making yourself vulnerable to digital identity theft.

Xero Head of Industry, Matthew Prouse, says “the biggest mistake people make is keep highly confidential information in their phone, such as in ‘Notes’ or disguised as a contact. You’re walking around with a pocket of very sensitive data.”

Prouse recommends that you do not

  • Add passwords and pin codes to the ‘Notes’ app
  • Try to disguise passwords, bank account numbers or your tax file number as phone contacts
  • Choose obvious passwords (such as your date of birth or cat’s name) that even your kids can work out
  • Replicate the same codes everywhere (such as your bank account pin)
  • Allow your computer or phone to automatically save passwords
  • Hand over old mobile phones to your kids without clearing all sensitive data first

Think about the worst case scenario: your phone gets stolen. For many of us, this doesn’t just mean losing a device. It also means losing passwords. And your digital identity.

Every day, there are reports of email accounts being hacked, phishing emails being sent with the aim of collecting credit card details and bank account numbers, and credentials stolen from one website and then used against other sites to see if username and passwords have been replicated.

Macpherson says over 80% of breaches occur via stolen or weak passwords, with email as the primary method of attack. So it’s highly important to keep sensitive employee and customer data safe via modern security practices, especially while running a sustainable and trusted modern business.


Now is the time to brush up on your security awareness.

Prouse recommends utilising apps such as LastPass and Google Authenticator for encryption and a second layer of security for important business and personal websites. However, you can’t just download them and consider yourself completely covered.

“As a business owner, your smartphone itself needs to be safe and secure too,” says Prouse. “Make sure there is a fingerprint scanner, facial recognition, and good password security.”

And when it comes to passwords, Prouse suggests thinking outside the box. 

“You might like to check out Stay Smart Online for some good tips and policies around passwords. Don’t just use your date of birth, postcode, or banking pin numbers. Pick random numbers; the authorisation apps will remember them for you.”

It’s also key to remember that if you have an existing authentication app setup on your old phone, you need to set it up on your new device before disposing of your old one.

So if you’re getting your hands on the new iPhone X, take some time to set up the security as a priority. Because, admit it, downloading Instagram was otherwise first on your list!

Jun 04

Your Tax Plan for 2019

Posted by Ross Griffiths on Tuesday, June 04, 2019

T A X  P L A N  F O R  2 0 1 9

 A N   I N T R O D UC T I O N   T O   T A X   P L A N 

So you want to get ahead of your taxes this year? 

We are here to help you with your tax saving strategies so you can make the most of your year. 

With the tax savings we will help you with, you can: 

- Reduce your home loan 

- Top up your Super 

- Deposit on an investment property 

- Upgrade your car 

- Or even take that annual holiday you’ve been dreaming of with your family or loved ones! 

Our financial experts can project and review your financial position for the coming end of financial year and develop some strategies for you to employ throughout the year to reduce your tax legally. 

We will focus on 3 key areas: Business tax strategies, wealth tax strategies and tax law requirements to get the most out of your refund or minimize the payable amount in your next tax return.

B O O K I N G  A  M E E T I N G  W I T H  U S

So how do you get in touch with us and take the first steps for your tax plan? 


Using our By The Numbers linked booking app, setting up a meeting for your tax plan with Ross, Carolina or Paola is as easy as the press of a button (literally!).

Here you will be able to synchronize your availability with your accountant and get started on your savings!

T H E  B O T T O M  L I N E

Don’t miss out on this opportunity to maximize your returns this year. Forget about that looming tax time cloud of uncertainty and start getting ahead of your year and prepare your next venture or adventure with the savings we will be able to help you collect.

Dec 16

Managing your business cash flow over the holiday period

Posted by on Sunday, December 16, 2018

December is usually the busiest time of the year for retail and hospitality businesses. But businesses in other sectors often find that their sales slowdown and their customers stop paying them for a few months. So cash flow dries up.

Whether your business is large or small, well-established or in start-up mode, you need to take a planned approach to managing cashflow during the holiday season. Here are few tips for keeping on top of cashflow management during the Christmas/New Year holiday period.
Don’t let your business admin slip in the rushed lead-up to Christmas. This is the most important time of the year to stay on top of your invoicing. You may find that many customers will be slow to pay because their businesses are closed over the Christmas period.
Be clear with your customers that you expect them to pay within the pre-arranged credit terms over the Christmas period. Phone regular slow payers a few days before payment is due to confirm that they’ll be paying on time. The phone is always a more effective method than email. If you’re not comfortable having this conversation with your customers, your accountant or bookkeeper may be able to assist.
If your business is usually quiet in January, why not offer your clients a 10% discount if they book you in for January? Why not offer them a 15% discount if they also refer a neighbour or a friend? Set whatever discount amounts work for you. This is the thing: A strategy like this will keep your business busy and some cash coming through during the usually quiet period.
If sales are a little slow in the lead-up to Christmas, use the time wisely to hit the ground running in the new year.
The pre-Christmas slowdown is a great time to work through the to-do list you’ve been compiling all year. This might include taking a thorough inventory, searching for more suitable lending alternatives, completing a comprehensive competitor analysis or researching the market for new products and suppliers.
Feel free to contact our office anytime by phone or email – We can’t wait to provide you with better advice now for a beautiful future!

Written by 
Paola Coco
Senior CPA, Accountant
By The Numbers Accounting

Dec 10

What do you need to know when hiring working holiday makers?

Posted by on Monday, December 10, 2018

s you might have heard already, working holiday makers need to pay higher tax rates, which means changes in withholding amounts for employers. The ATO has been checking files and data matching this information with the Payment Summaries. 

When hiring a new worker from overseas, you need to make sure you know their visa status and number before you enter them into Payroll. Usually, they have either a confirmation email from Home Affairs or an app called myVEVO with this information. There you can check the correct status and, proceed to mark the residency status in Xero properly. Once set in the employee file in Xero Payroll, the employee’s PAYG withholding will update automatically for you and tax them correctly. 

Now, here is the fun bit, working out which category to choose.  The categories that Xero use, in accordance with the tax law are:

  • Foreign Resident: People who are holidaying in Australia or visiting for less than 6 months that do not intend to migrate to Australia or to study long term here. Typically, we can say that everyone who holds a Visa Subclass 600 is a foreign resident.
  • Working Holiday Maker: These are people that are under the Visas 417 and 462.
  • Australian Resident: Every Australian or New Zealander or even temporary residents* that are not in the previous categories. 
* Temporary residents are those on student visas and graduate visas. They are residents for tax purposes, even though they’re not technically a resident of Australia for Immigration purposes.

What to do next? After doing this, if you have anyone in the working holiday makers category, you MUST notify the ATO and be registered as employer of working holiday makers. 

The most common industry affect by these changes are hospitality, but other industries that might be affect are tourism business, farming, businesses with seasonal workers.

But do not worry, we’re here to help you with this. Give us a call at BTNA and we’ll organise everything with the ATO and make sure your registration is completed. 

Do not hesitate to contact us if you need any further information regarding this topic, we’re only a phone call away!

Written by
Carolina Areiza
Senior Accountant
By The Numbers Accounting

Sep 14

Would you appreciate an extra $240 in your pocket every month?

Posted by Ross Griffiths on Wednesday, September 14, 2016

For many Inner Westies, owning a family home is only possible with the financial challenge of a large home loan. Did you know the average debt in the Inner West is $423,565 & the average interest rate being paid is 4.67%. This equates to average monthly payments of $2,395.36* which makes up a large proportion of household expenditure. 
With interest rates at all-time lows, now might be the time for you to review & refinance your existing home loan.

There are several reasons refinancing may benefit you and your family:
It could provide equity access for home renovations
Options for a holiday 
Investment opportunities

Let’s have a look at a case study of the average inner west family.

Case Study.

Monica and her husband bought their first home in Yarraville, they took 
out a $500,000 home loan with an interest rate of 4.67%. Their principal 
and interest monthly repayments were $2,395.36.

After doing some quick calculations, they discovered that if they switched
their home loan to a new lender with a lower interest rate of 3.65%, their 
monthly repayment would be just $2,154.71 which would lead to a saving 
of $240.65 per month
or approximately $72,195 over the life of a 25-year 
home loan.

Monica and her husband used a mortgage broker who was able to do the 
leg work for them, saving time and ensuring they got the best loan rate 
and structure for their circumstances.

Is Refinancing right for you?

Whilst saving money is fabulous, there are some factors you need to consider to ensure that refinancing is the right move for you:

There are costs involved in refinancing your home loan, therefore it may not be the best financial move for everyone. These costs may include government charges to switch (to give you an idea, it’s a maximum of $250) and any lender application fees. 

A good broker will consider any applicable costs and some of the following:

Your repayment history or changed financial circumstances
How high is your loan-to-value ratio (LVR)
Fixed rate break costs
Is your loan amount too small (this is a nice problem to have)
Family Budget

Don't wait, call today and speak to an expert at WE Mortgage Solutions, our mortgage broking partners, for an obligation free consultation and start saving. 

Call 1300 13 59 53 or book an appointment online at

*Principle & Interest over 25 years

Mar 07

Where there’s a Will, there’s an Estate Plan. Well, there should be.

Posted by Ross Griffiths on Monday, March 07, 2016

Let’s face it: no-one likes to think of death, especially their own. It’s not exactly a great conversation starter, is it? This might explain why so many people end up “dying Intestate” which means they die without a will and, as a consequence, have their assets distributed according to State law.

Sadly, the way State law distributes a deceased person’s assets among family members can often be a lot different to the way a deceased person wanted their assets distributed

It can create a lot of unnecessary stress and conflict within a family.

So unless you’re living as a hermit with no contact or relationships with others, and you also don’t have a single possession to your name, you need to not only think about preparing a will, but do something about it.

And you need more than just a will. You need an estate plan.

Why having a will is not enough

If you have a will in place, you may not think you even need an estate plan. After all, your will spells out your “Who gets what” instructions regarding your estate, right? 

Unfortunately, the estate you’ve specified in your will may not include all of your assets. By law, your will doesn’t include assets such as:

  • jointly-held property
  • superannuation
  • proceeds of life insurance policies
  • assets held in trust
  • company assets.

To control what happens to these assets, you need an estate plan.

6 more reasons to have an estate plan 

A well-written estate plan can do more than just distribute all of your assets the way you want. It can also help:

  1. Your beneficiaries (i.e. your loved ones) to reduce (if not eliminate) tax on the income generated when they receive their inheritance, and every year thereafter
  2. Protect your beneficiaries’ inheritance from unfortunate events such as divorce and bankruptcy
  3. Minimise or even avoid the death benefits tax when distributing your superannuation benefits
  4. Guard against a beneficiary wasting their inheritance because of their spending habits, mental health, drug addictions, gambling or other vulnerabilities
  5. Make capital gains tax savings on the assets distributed through your estate
  6. Ensure your assets are passed to your preferred beneficiaries rather than, say, an in-law or former spouse.

Who should help you create your estate plan? 

While an estate plan is a legal document, its creation shouldn’t be left solely to your solicitor. You need someone who knows about you, your family and your financial situation. 

And the person who generally knows the most about that is your accountant or financial planner. 

However, while they may know all about your finances, they may not have the legal qualifications needed to create a watertight estate plan. So you actually need your accountant or financial planner and a solicitor. 

According to One Super Fund partner Gerard Wall: 

“The financial planner’s job is to try and identify if the estate plan is funded properly, and if it is funded that the insurance is owned by the right person; the accountant’s job is to make sure that the client’s affairs are structured appropriately from a tax point of view; and the solicitor’s job is to make sure the documentation is all drawn up.”

Avoid leaving a trail of chaos behind you

Whether or not you have an active will in place, without an estate plan there’s no telling who your assets may end up with. Avoid creating stress and conflict for your loved ones, and give yourself the peace of mind in the here-and-now that your affairs are well in order. 

Get in touch and we can start the ball rolling to get a solid estate plan in place for you and your family.

Jan 06

3 Reasons Your Business Needs A Budget Now

Posted by Ross Griffiths on Wednesday, January 06, 2016

For many, the word ‘budget’ is about as appealing as the word ‘diet’.

It seems to imply what you will go without, rather than what you will achieve.

To a successful business owner, however, the word ‘budget’ has a very different meaning.

It’s more like a map than a diet. It’s an outline of where you want to take the business, and what you need to achieve to get there.

Running a business without a budget is like a ship’s captain setting off on a voyage without a map. Sounds ridiculous, doesn’t it. Who would do that?

Yet this is, figuratively speaking, what many business owners do.

Successful business owners, on the other hand, not only set clear targets and budgets each year, they monitor them closely each month, even each week, and adjust them as they go throughout the year.

Here are 3 compelling reasons your business needs a budget, now:

One: If you don’t know where you’re going, how do you know you’re not already there?

If you’re not satisfied with how your business is performing, unless you set clear goals for where you want to take it, it’s probably as good as it is ever going to get. At best, it will just meander along, subject to the whims and vagaries of the economy and general market conditions.

The good news is that your business doesn’t need to meander along.

The first step in charting a clear course for growing and developing your business is objectively measuring ‘where it’s at’ right now.

And the numbers do tell a story.

For some, they act as a wake up call. For others, they just confirm the journey’s starting point.

It’s paradoxical that a large part of the value in a business budget is not in the numbers themselves. It’s in the realisation and acceptance of where you are and where you want to be.

The numbers are just the signposts for the journey.

A factual look at the numbers that describe where your business is right now takes away all the subjectivity, opinions and ‘reasons’ (often excuses, disguised as reasons).

This is the naked truth.

In fact, it is like standing on the scales, naked, looking at yourself in a full length mirror. That may or may not be a pretty sight!

For your business, these factual numbers are the sales, the variable costs, the margins, the overheads, and, lastly, the profit. After all your work, this is the reward you’re left with.

Then comes the first of a series of ‘hard questions’…

  • Are you happy with that profit?
  • Is it worth it? Or are you dissatisfied? Then …
  • What do you want those figures to look like?

Answer those questions, and you’ve just described where you want to be. Congratulations! You have charted your course, which is the first step to maximising your success.

Two: What’s more important to treat? Symptoms or causes?

As you well know, sales just don’t happen. Costs don’t just drop because you want them to. Sales and costs are a result of other underlying factors. Put another way, they are symptoms of causes.

The business budgeting process quantifies the symptoms, and by asking a series of ‘What leads to this number?’ questions, it also identifies the underlying causes.

For example, underlying factors contributing to a sales (revenue) figure could include:

  • the number of calls made,
  • the number of customers walking through the door,
  • the percentage of conversions of enquiries or walk-ins to sales, the dollar value of the average transaction, or simply
  • where your marketing is targeted.

These are all called drivers.
The sales figures are simply a result of these drivers. Costs are no different.

For example, the rent paid may be a result of the storage you need for your stock levels. Wages costs may be blowing out as a result of overtime paid but underlying that may be inefficient staff. Or a lack of clear processes. Or both.

So in reality what came first was not the sale or the cost, but their underlying drivers. The budgeting process forces you to name and to quantify these underlying drivers.

That’s one of the most valuable aspects of preparing your budget. Not the budget itself, per se, but identifying your business’ drivers.


Because then you can focus on improving them.

That’s what will produce the improved results in your business. No focusing on last quarter’s figures. That’s history.

It’s more fun to create history. And that is, in essence, what you are doing when you are in your own business. You are captain of your own destiny, and you can steer it in any direction you want.

Note that word … direction. A key point is to have one.

You will enjoy how effectively the budgeting and planning process will get you crystal clear on your direction.

Three: Budgeting is not about accounting. It’s about being accountable.

Once you are clear on the handful of drivers that creates your business’ results, the next question is…

What are you going to do about it?

Your budget won’t just give you a monthly sales target, for example, it will help you quantify the drivers that will produce the result.

For example, if next month’s sales target is $120,000, that end-result figure is not your focus. Not on a day-to-day basis. Knowing the underlying drivers, your focus will instead become, for example:

  • 25 calls per day (Driver No.1)
  • At 80% conversion rate (Driver No.2), with
  • Each customer buying an average of $300 worth of products (Driver No. 3).

Now you and your staff have a clear focus and are 100% accountable.

That’s good for them, and good for you and your business.

People in a business want a clear scoreboard and a ‘game to play’ so they know whether or not they are winning. Research has found that a lack of measurement in a job is demotivating to a staff member. Patrick Lencioni’s book ‘3 Signs of a Miserable Job’ gives some great examples of this.

Knowing these drivers, and quantifying a target for each you can then ask questions like:

  • Have the 25 calls been made today?
  • If not, why not? Is the target realistic?
  • Does the team need training?
  • Do they need better telephone equipment or dialing software?
  • Or just more focus?
  • Or guidance on what their task priorities should be?
  • Or a combination of these?
  • Are we being effective and converting 80% of the calls?
  • Again, if not, why not?

You can then decide to improve skills, or systems, or attitude, or all three!

As you can see, the power of the budget is in the process of preparing it, and then the budget itself is a tool to hold you accountable to the measurable indicators you’ve chosen.

An added layer of accountability is… us.

We work with a number of clients where, on either a monthly or quarterly basis, we act as a sounding board and independent party to ask you the hard questions about the drivers and the results. This focuses your mind, allows you to form a clear Action Plan to improve results, and then increases your chances of success because you know you need to report in to us next time.

It’s a powerful process that you’ll enjoy due to the focus it creates and, in turn, the results that focus achieves in your business.

To take more control of your business and its performance, get in touch to make a time to come in and see us. Depending on the size of your business, we might work out that a quarterly process might work best (and be the most feasible, cost-wise), or your business might be at a point where monthly or even weekly guidance would be ideal.

Either way, we’ll outline your options and your costs so you know precisely what’s involved.

We look forward to helping you chart your course, helping to get a clear direction, and then keeping you and your business on course.

After all, you won’t end up at the ideal destination by drifting.

Nov 28

Get It Done. Get It Read. Get Ahead.

Posted by Ross Griffiths on Saturday, November 28, 2015

Success in business requires a number of essential ingredients. A sound strategy. A robust business model. Effective planning. Strong financial control and bookkeeping. A good team. Great systems. Measurement. Focus.


But you know what? Even all those elements are not enough without this skill: Execution.

Call it “Getting Things Done”, making things happen, the action habit, extreme focus… call it what you like, for many entrepreneurs it’s what separates mediocre from magic. It’s the difference between a business that plods along from one year to the next, and one that grows, evolves, impresses, enriches.

 Execution is a skill. Sadly, we’re not taught it at school. (Gee, but we all use those good ol’ quadratic equations each day!) The good news is that, as adults, we can go out and find the information and principles of effective execution, then apply them. Daily.

To fast track you on your journey towards becoming brilliant at execution, here are some books that we highly recommend that you not only read, but you study, practice, live by:

Read (or listen) to those books, and your mind will be permanently re-wired. Obstacles and frustrations will become Projects, Tasks, or Wildly Important Goals. And you’ll have a pragmatic framework for achievement and creating the change you want in your business.

And in your life. It’s powerful stuff.

We’d love to hear of your favourite books on this ‘execution’ topic. Please share them in the Comments below, and after you read (or if you have already read) any of the books above, please share with us the key principles and practices that have made the biggest difference to you in terms of “getting things done” and executing your ideas.

Oct 29

Can't afford to start your new business? Why not crowdfund it?

Posted by Ross Griffiths on Thursday, October 29, 2015

So you’ve got a great idea for your business, but you don’t have the funds right now to get it off the ground.

You could try applying for a government grant, but it’s often a long and arduous bureaucratic process of form filling and there are of course no guarantees you’ll get the money. Some governments also offer tax incentives for research and development, but usually you need to spend the money before you can get it back.

And there are private investors—’business angels’—too, if you have the contacts and know how to structure and negotiate a good deal that you won’t regret in the years to come.

‘Bootstrapping’ is the most common way that businesses fund their startup phase. This is where entrepreneurs fund the startup business out of their own savings and even from their credit card limits! High risk, but the bootstrapping advantage is that the founders don’t have to give away equity or control to other investors.

The downside is that bootstrapping can lead to under-capitalisation of the business, which can starve it of the cash the business needs to fund its growth.

You have to admire the entrepreneurial spirit. Small business is the engine room of the economy.

But what if you’re not able to tap into government grants, private investors or your don’t have sufficient funds for your startup idea?

Fortunately, it’s not a dead-end. There’s another relatively new way for your business to get the money it needs: crowdfunding.

With a little help from my friends

Crowdfunding is defined as the practice of funding a project or venture by raising many small amounts of money from a large number of people, typically via a web-based independent crowdsourcing platform.

Compared with other ways of raising money through multiple smaller investors—such as by issuing a prospectus or other traditionally regulated disclosure documents, which could also extend to completing the complex and expensive Initial Public Offering (IPO) process—crowdfunding is a relatively simple, easy and inexpensive process.

Crowdfunding is essentially a process of explaining (selling the idea of!) a proposed venture or project, and then asking for pledges from the public. In return, those who pledge receive rewards. These rewards can include early access to the product or service, or copies of the proposed book, album or movie, or (depending on the crowdfunding platform used) even equity in your company.

You just need to offer something that motivates people to help fund your crowdfunding campaign.

Two crowdfunding models to choose from

When you set up your crowdfunding campaign, you specify:

  • the amount of money you hope to raise
  • the time period you want to raise it in.

What happens at the end of that time period depends on the funding model you’ve chosen.

With the ‘all-or-nothing’ model (used by crowdfunding sites such as Pozible and Kickstarter), if you don’t reach your target then nothing happens. You don’t get any money, and your backers don’t get any rewards.

If your campaign is successful, then you get the money (less the fees charged by the crowdfunding site), and the backers get their rewards.

With the ‘flexible’ model (used by Indiegogo), you get to keep the money you raise whether your campaign is successful or not. However, you may be charged higher fees if you don’t reach your target. (You may also be legally obligated to give rewards to anyone who has given you money for your campaign. Be sure to study the crowdfunding platform’s terms and conditions before you start your campaign.)

How much are you willing to reveal?

The secret to a successful crowdfunding campaign is giving people a compelling reason to back it. And according to Johanna Baker-Dowell of Strawberry Communications, that means telling your story.

“Speak from the heart and help your supporters understand why the project is important to you and why they should pledge to it. Use words, videos, photos and whatever else you can think of to share your story.”

There’s a fine line between telling your story and giving away your intellectual property. So when you’re telling your story, make sure you don’t reveal too much.

Thanks to the internet and crowdfunding platforms, entrepreneurs now have more options and a much better chance to get the funding needed for their startups.

The “Ask and you shall receive” principle might just hold true? It’s certainly a matter of, “Ask and you shall find out!”

If you’d like to bounce any of your business startup ideas off us, or ask us about the various funding strategies you have available to you, get in touch and we’ll make a time to have a chat about it over a coffee.