Investaura’s new book is now available on Amazon: “Business Planning for Managers and Entrepreneurs”

Investaura Management Consultants is pleased to announce the publication of its new book on Business Planning for Managers and Entrepreneurs (ISBN 978-3-9813734-2-4), written by Pierre A. Lurin, a Managing Partner at Investaura.

The paperback edition complements the hardback edition first published in 2010, which has been updated and improved. Apart from the new cover, the book addresses a wider audience and includes a foreward where the author shares his recent experience acquired over the period 2010-2014, as well as personal insight on current and future trends.

Business Planning Excel template for the telecoms and ICT industry

Finding a good business plan template in Excel format can be really hard, for the following reasons:

You need the right level of detail. More often than not, the templates provided by others (your corporate HQs, your boss, you name it) are much too detailed – if you work for a large company, you know what I mean. In those horrible templates, you really wonder who might ever read the hundreds and thousands of rows that try to forecast what could happen 10 years down the road….

Bus_Plan

If you are looking at an existing business, the financial projections should also take the recent past into account. Too often, the templates don’t seem to care about what happened in the last couple of years. If you haven’t analysed the recent performance of the company, how can you pretend that your 7-10 year forecast is realistic?

Forecasting ‘costs’ is hard, but forecasting markets and revenues is really a lot harder. One way to address this problem is to forecast the market in two different manners: by regions / countries on one hand, and by products / product lines on the other hand. And then reconcile them so that the two projections are aligned.

Finally, the financial plan must look good. Not only it must support the story that you are trying to sell (to your management, or to investors), but it must also be visually appealing.

In the ICT industry, there are quite a lot of software and service businesses (as well as hardware, for sure), with the added charm that gross margins can be (very) high, and working capital requirements low (who doesn’t love prepayments or annual software / service fees paid upfront?). So we have reflected these salient features of the ICT industry in the template below.

Enjoy the template in PDF format!

Download “Business Plan in the ICT industry Template” INVESTAURA_Business-Planning-Template.pdf – Downloaded 4676 times – 1 MB

You need to register for free as a ‘Business Plan’ member on our ‘The Art of Business Planning’ web site to download the Business Plan template in Excel (more than 7500 downloads). Go to the registration page

The Cray2 computer that I used 20 years ago now sits in my living room: it is called the iPad2 and costs $500, not $30million

Back in the early 1990s, I used a Cray2 computer. Only 27 of them were made and sold worldwide, for a price tag of $17m (per unit), or about $30m in 2014 dollars.

Since its commercialisation in 1985, the price of the Cray2 computer has gone down by a factor 100 000, equivalent to -35% per annum. Its form factor has also changed a bit.

Believe it or not, the iPad2 (2011) is as powerful as the Cray2 computer of the late 1980s. Its commercial success has also been larger: tens of millions of iPad2 have been sold so far. And it is still selling.

Supply side forecasting: Forget Moore’s law, there is now a better model

“Prediction is very difficult, especially if it is about the future”

Nils Bohr, Nobel laureate in Physics

Yes, forecasting can be hard. But on the supply side, the good news is that many technologies display constant growth rate over time. This means that capacity is growing exponentially and when plotted on a logarithmic scale, capacity is a linear function of time. Sounds familiar? Yes, this is Moore’s law: the number of transistor per chip has been correctly predicted by to double every 2 years on average since the 1960s, giving an annual growth rate of +40%.