Good ideas in the communications industry are not hard to come by. But what is important is establishing whether a good idea will translate in to a profitable business. This involves many aspects:
- How much will it cost to develop the technology?
- Is there anyone out there already doing this?
- What are customers prepared to pay for the product or service?
- How long will it take to go to market?
- Building a business plan & creating cashflow forecasts.
In many ways this is one of the most crucial aspects of your planning and should be carried out early on in the process. Whilst you do not necessarily want to enter in to a crowded market, a new market can often be just as hard to open up. When you are at the bleeding edge of technology you are often developing solutions that people do not know they need.......yet.
We will prepare you a document on who is offering a similar service, an estimate of each player's market size and detailed product analysis. This report will often lead to enhancments on your product design. In some cases it will trun out that the project is not viable and will save heartache for all of those involved.
This is a very difficult issue and often clients have no real idea what people are prepared to pay for their product. Our work focuses on 2 key stages
- Developing a price model based on competitor's pricing or similarly featured products.
- Commisioning focus groups and presenting several different pricing models.
Time to Market
From an early stage we will put together a project plan and understand what the interdependancies are between one part of the project and another. We facilitate regular workshops to discuss "project creep" and look at ways to manage deadlines. Delays to launch can cost a significant % of the overall budget, so delaying other parts of a project that would incurr unnecesarry expense should be explored. We always try to build in a 20% margin of error and ensure the funding package is able to cover the delays.
Where it seems that the delay will cause a budget overrun we ensure the principals are informed as soon a spossible so they are in position to take action before they are out of options.
How much will the technology cost?
We have a team of technical archietects at Bellingham who have many years of experience developing solutions. They each have experience with different disciplines such as;
- Software development, Serverside and Clients such as iPhone, Android, PC or Mac
- Hardware both servers and networking infrastructure.
- Data connectivity including international fibre and satellite links.
Business Plan & Cashflows
One of the most important parts of preparing for your project is the business plan. This is the"bible" of your project and should be able to explain to someone who knows nothing about the project exactly what you are proposing to do and how you are going to do it. A well written business plan must de-risk your project, it needs to look at what the risks factors are and how you plan to mitigate against them.
Probably the most read part of a business plan is the finacial section. Firstly we prepare a detailed breakdown of all of the CAPEX and OPEX that will be incurred in your project. Then comes the revenue forecast, in order to give some credibility to your revenue forecast we research market sizing and expected market penetration. Finally the cashflows show the timing of all payments to suppliers and when you anticipate the revenue to start, this will reveal your funding requirements. No financial forecast can ever be 100% accurate so we always recommend building in a contingency in case you run in to difficulties along the way.