Longtime owner of a small but successful music venue and event space here (surviving the pandemic so far via PPP and a friendly landlord).
I've been working on a new large-scale concept venue and have assembled a great team and have developed a well-received deck. I'm looking to start raising money and wondering how best to approach it. The amount of money we need for renovation and build-out is substantial (on the order of $ 3m) and I have no experience raising this kind of money. My current operation was bootstrapped and built up slowly.
How should I structure this for investors in an attractive but reasonable way? My friends with startups keep telling me to raise via SAFEs, but I am not a tech company who will be raising a bunch of future rounds or aim for a big "exit".
Then there are rev-share models but based on my projections I'm not sure I can sustain paying back $ 3m with a (1.5x?) multiple over the next 4 or 5 years. That's $ 1m a year off the top and sounds like a cash flow nightmare.
Suggestions? How are other venues, restaurants, nightclubs, bowling alleys, theme parks, etc. raising large chunks of capital?
These people differ from most (developer-type) indie hackers in that they're not as focusing on developing a product but rather find other ways to make money, usually by selling info products for example, running a community, or doing consulting, sales, and marketing for other businesses. They have a lot of good insights and case studies that aren't usually seen in bootstrapper or SaaS style communities. For example:
This person runs a community of SaaS founders and to make money, he does affiliate marketing for products that a SaaS would use, like Zoom, Zapier, etc. He charges a yearly subscription and also resells licenses at a markup. He can do this because he buys licenses in bulk (e.g. 200 Zoom enterprise licenses for $ 2,100 total) and then sells them at markup ($ 25/month), making a profit from the spread (25 * 200 – 2,100 = $ 2,900) plus the yearly subscription cost.
Another example is this guy:
He does sales on behalf of course creators. He will find a creator with a high value course (4 – 5 figure range) and then he optimizes their funnel by adding a form that the potential buyer has to fill out, which includes their email and phone number. Then he will schedule a call with the customer to figure out if they need the course, and if so, how it might help them, and this guy basically does high-touch sales. He makes money by taking a commission on each sale, something like 35%.
These are just a few examples of people I follow that have given me a lot of value in terms of thinking about other money-making opportunities than making yet another SaaS, as well as what to do for better sales and marketing of the product. Usually these people are much less perfectionistic than I am and just want to get their services out the door in order to make money, and then they worry about optimizing their processes. Sometimes us developer-focused indie hackers can get stuck in the "perfect MVP" cycle rather than thinking that the product is there to make money at the end of the day.
I made a community for people who like money Twitter, will link it if allowed to.
I was just curious if I should bother learning No-Code to build an MVP and if someone else with a technical background did this. I don't know if the time spent learning one of these tools is going to save me time in the long run – I could just build it using something I already know. In addition, I am also considering to pre-sell the idea without building a product at all and just faking it/creating mockups, in that case what would be a good tool to use that is easier than Figma, for example.