IV. Ingenious Funding ideas for Financing Your Start Up
Section A: Introduction: Little Money + Much Ingenuity
English writer Arnold Bennett once said, “Much ingenuity with a little money is vastly more profitable and amusing than much money without ingenuity.”
He’s right. And that’s why you’ve been learning about how to bootstrap your way to business success. However, the other cool way to utilize your ingenuity is to put it to work to get the money you need.
Take the example of Clayton Christopher, who was one of the co-founders of Sweet Leaf Tea. After coming off a road trip in 1998, Christopher came to the realization that not much-bottled tea tastes like homemade tea – in other words, it didn’t taste very good. So he set about making organic teas that taste like homemade tea.
He wasn’t rolling in money. However, he believed in his business, so he used a grant from his dad along with the last $10,000 he had to get his business off the ground.
His start-up expenses included $1000 for a computer and printer, $3000 for an old van, and $3000 for some barebones equipment. When I say bare bones, I mean it. Christopher started out by brewing tea in pillow cases and transferring the tea using garden hoses from Home Depot.
Pretty humble beginnings, right? But from these humble beginnings, Sweet Leaf Tea grew to be a $12 million enterprise by 2008. And just a couple short years later it was bought out by Nestle.
Point is, you can do the same thing. And like Christopher, you don’t need to have a huge bank account to get started. You just need to get a little creative.
That’s what we’ll talk about in the next section.