Here are some places to find money for green business. I will be adding 10 a day until I can’t find anymore resources. But I promise that within 20 days I will list 200 funding sources for green business!
It is not as simple as asking your friends to loan you $100. You have to present a proposal and do your research, but money is out there, and lots of it! Finding the people who want to back green business is getting easier and easier, foundations, the government, banks and other financial institutions, and venture capitalists all see the value of supporting green business. My suggestion is to relax and ask! All they can do is say no..and you’re no worse off if they do!
People have 1 primary reason for investing…money! It’s the primary reason for investing; to get a return on the investment. There are secondary reasons..they can be altruistic or selfish. Altruistic reasons for supporting green business might be; to be kind to the earth or because they want future generations to have a beautiful world to live in, or think mankind would be better off without pesticides in their foods. Selfish motivation might be; someone who love biking as a sport and wants to invest in more places to do it. Or, with all the news about global warming, they are scared to death of a horrible natural disaster affecting their personal life. When you ask for money you need to think first about the person or organizations motivation for giving you money and prepare your presentation accordingly.
Whatever their reason….there are thousands of people with lots of money looking to make more money…and if your business looks like a money maker then they will want ot share in the profits. You are doing them a favor in the same way that they are helping you.
Green business is not a fad…like pet rocks or the newest dance craze! It is essential to sustain life on this planet and more and more investors are finally beginning to understand that. Soon, lenders will be demanding that as part of reducing overhead costs and increasing office management efficency that all businesses adopt money saving green products and office operations. You will be ahead of the curve!
Early Adopters is a term used by change management theorists to identify people who quickly grasp innovation. They act right away. They comprise as much as 13.5% of the population and are sandwiched between Innovators and the Early Majority. If you are one of those committed to starting a green business now that’s who you are! You see the vision and your acting on it. Time is critical because you have the advantage of branding yourself now before others follow. Don’t wait, move now, get funded and succeed! Whatever your motivation is… now is the time to act…not next month or next year. Don’t forget…the worst possible senario is, they will say no. Brush it off and move on to the next source. Just keeping knocking on doors and get green!
So here’s a list to get you started
1. Stimulus Money Decision Makers Contact Lists http://www.onviatools.com/SearchResults.aspCat=28 This list costs money, but find a few other green entrepreneurs to go in on the cost, it can come down to $25 or so to access the list. (or pay the $150 yourself. You can also check with your cities business department and they may give you access to it or at least share the contact information that is relevant to your area.
2. Costa Mesa Based Green Funding http://green-funding.com/ Energy Loans,Energy Efficient Mortgages, Energy Improvement Mortgages, Solar Financing, Home Performance Improvements Financing, Solar Equipment Leasing, Energy Star Certification Financing, LEED Certification Financing, California Title 24 Financing
3. Clean Tech Capital Portal http://www.cleantech-capital.net/
4. Community Conservation Enterprise Don’t be put off by the rainforest name in the link they work everywhere on Green Business Projects. http://www.rainforest-alliance.org/work.cfm?id=north_america
5. Green Seed Money Grants http://www.echoinggreen.org/
6. Center for Non Profit Management (Los Angeles area) www.cnmsocal.org
7. Accion ttp://www.accionusa.org/
8. PACE http: www.pacela.org
9.-12. Angel Investors Angel investors do not hand over their money casually. Expect to provide potential angel investors with all the documentation you’d give the bank when applying for a loan, such as your business plan, financial projections, market research, product data, etc. You will have to share decision-making authority with your angel investor. They may ask for a board position, for example, and will place restrictions and stipulations on future corporate actions. Retain an experienced attorney and accountant to assist in negotiating and documenting the arrangement. Here are some links to angel investor sites;
http://alturl.com/nzcw Angel Investors network site
http://www.inc.com/articles/2001/09/23461.html Angel Investor Connections from Inc. com
http://www.breadstreet.com/ Funding virtually anything
Well some us just don’t like to borrow and I’m all for that approach so here are a few sites that can help you plan a bootstrapping approach to financing your business. Bootstrapping is just using customer receipts to grow your business..like selling cookies baked in your home oven to friends then saving all the profits to open a bakery.
13. -15. This first one is 10 very cool tips for bootstrapping http://alturl.com/smgt
And here are some more cool tips http://alturl.com/nksw
Absolutely fantastic advice about bootstrapping here from Guy Kawasaki!!!! http://alturl.com/6zmg
16. Idea Cafe grants for small business (small grants for small business… lol usually $1,000 or less) http://alturl.com/oy4t
17. This following link is a federal government search engine for loans, grants, and financing for small business. Now, How cool is that????? http://search.business.gov/startLoans.html
18. It is perfectly legal to have a fundraiser for your business. Need $500- $5000 ? Invite a bunch of friends to your house for a backyard BBQ and pitch them…not for loans..but donations. Ask them to support you on your new adventure, have copies of your business plan and show them a power point of your business idea. Live in a crummy neighborhood or …house too small? Ask who ever you know with a big beautiful house to let you use it for the presentation. Be sure to do ALL the clean up, pay for the refreshments, and write a thank you note afterwards. On the invitation you can put a suggested donation for the party $25 or so…then after the presentation ask for those who believe in you and your business success, to increase that donation $100 + . make sure you send everyone who donated an update (use free newsletter templates from microsoft.com) thank them all and as you grow continue to ask for their support until you are up and running and surviving on business revenues.
19. OK this one is not for the faint hearted. Check this guy out…have you heard about the red paperclip guy on craigslist? From a simple red paperclip to a house in Canada. He just kept trading up ( 14 times) …barter only!!!! Holy canolli how cool can you be? Here’s the link to his site http://oneredpaperclip.blogspot.com/2005/07/contact.html OK find a pocket knife or shoestring and head for craigs list barter section. You’ll pick up free puplicity along the way!
20. Passive business on the internet. Affiliate programs and drop ship business off your website. This won’t make you more than a couple of hundred dollar a month but its money….easy to set up and they do all the work. But this is a waste of time if you don’t already have a busy website. Amazon is probably the best afiliate program