Who will benefit from this course?

Anyone who wants to do a financial plan for a start-up

  • Venture investors

    Understanding business models and doing financial projections are critical skills for venture investors. Make sure you are evaluating your deals with full information.

  • Traditional investors

    Financial projections for start-ups are done very differently from projections for traditional investments. Learn to avoid the mistakes many new investors make when modeling start-ups.

  • Entrepreneurs

    Lack of understanding about business models and financial projections can result in failed fundraising or in bad deals for start-ups Learn to value your company like investors will do.

What will I learn in this course?

How to do a financial forecast for a start-up

Evaluating business models and doing financial projections for any company is difficult, and for startup companies is even more difficult, so it is not surprising that entrepreneurs and investors struggle with these. In this course we will look at innovative business models for start-up companies, and how to do create and analyze reasonable financial projections for start-ups. Participants will be work with us on a financial forecast for a start-up of their choice, including in 3 hours of live sessions.

What will I get from this course?

This course is not about passive learning. Participants will be hands-on and will be equipped with a toolkit that they can immediately apply beyond the course. Participants will receive a customized review of a start-up financial forecast of their choice.

  • 3 hours of live interactive sessions with Expara CEO Douglas Abrams

  • A custom review of a financial projection of your choice

  • 39 videos - 8 hours of viewing and 25 original articles for reading

  • Pro-forma Valuation Excel Model for start-ups

  • Start-up evaluation checklist and term sheet template

  • Access to Expara's network of more than 2,000 venture investors

  • Expara Academy Certificate of Course Completion

Course curriculum

  • 1

    Welcome to the course!

    • A message from the instructor

    • About the instructor

    • Connecting to my network

    • READ FIRST: How to complete the course

    • About Expara

    • Reading list for investors

  • 2

    Understanding Risk and Return

    • What is the relationship between risk and return?

    • Risk and return

    • Why fear risk?

    • Risk and return - Small versus scalable business

    • Reading: Risk and return

    • Reading - Two types of entrepreneurs

    • Reading - Fear and failure

  • 3

    Welcome to venture capital world

    • Welcome to venture capital world

  • 4

    Why do investors invest in VC?

    • Highest returning asset class

    • VC is the highest returning asset class

    • VC improves portfolio diversification

    • Reading - Why do investors invest in VC funds?

    • Reading - Top VC fund managers can consistently outperform

  • 5

    Why VC now?

    • Why VC now

    • Why venture capital now

    • Reading - Is moores law over?

    • Reading - Amaras law

  • 6

    Why do start-ups raise investment

    • Why should startups raise investment

    • Why do startups raise money?

    • Reading - Why do start-ups raise money?

  • 7

    How do start-ups fund growth

    • How to fund growth

    • How to fund growth?

    • Fund growth with convertible debt and equity

    • Reading - What is the best form of funding for a start up

    • Reading - What is the difference between debt and equity?

    • Reading - Only a moron starts a business with a loan

  • 8

    How do VCs make money?

    • How do VCs make money?

    • What kind of company does VC invest in

  • 9

    Evaluating investments - which companies generate high returns?

    • What kind of companies generate high returns?

    • Which one is more scalable- product or service?

    • Reading - What is the optimal time to enter a market?

    • Reading - What do VCs invest in?

    • Reading - Which scales better?

    • Reading - Good business vs good investment

  • 10

    How do VCs evaluate start-ups?

    • The investor’s decision tree

    • The investor’s decision tree

    • Key elements for success

    • Key elements for success

    • Reading - Product market fit or team

    • Reading - Three most important factors

    • Reading - Key elements of success

    • Download: Business plan outline and checklist

  • 11

    Investor and start up communication

    • Investor and start up communication

    • Communicating with investors

    • Reading - How to connect with investors

  • 12

    Evaluating the financial plan

    • In the financial section of the business plan

    • Why do we need a financial plan?

    • Financial projections - financial section of the business plan (2)

    • Valuation - financial section of the business plan (3)

  • 13

    Understanding the business model

    • Business model - how will you make money?

    • Business Model - The financial section of the business plan (1)

    • Key revenue model issues

    • Reading - What is a business model?

  • 14

    Disruptive Business models

    • Business model innovation

    • Business model innovations

    • Reading - What is the Gillette business model

    • Reading - Disruptive business models

  • 15

    Financial models and projections

    • Create financial projections

    • Download: Financial projection and valuation model

    • Why forecast 5 years?

    • Starting with revenue forecast

    • Top-down market sizing example - Plant-based meat

    • Top-down market sizing example - Sesame milk

    • Bottom up market sizing

    • Introduction to Revenue forecast in Excel

    • Why is the top-down forecast different from bottom-up forecast?

    • Mistakes startup CEOs make

    • Reading - Why will financial forecasts always be wrong?

    • Financial model explained 1

    • Financial model explained 2

    • Financial model explained 3

    • Balance sheet

    • Income statement 1

    • Income statements 2

    • Cash flow budget

    • DCF valuation model

    • Financials and DCF Valuation

    • Weighted average cost of capital

    • Valuation in financial modelling

    • Dilution schedule and investor ROI

    • Reading - Why are there so many unprofitable startups?

    • Reading - How is a model different from reality

  • 16

    Venture funding downloads

    • Venture funding downloads

  • 17

    Live sessions

    • Submission: Live session

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