How to write company overview section in a business plan

In a business plan, the main crucial part is writing about your company’s history to let your investor, banker, financial institution and other readers know how you started your business and what is your idea behind it. Company overview section provides a brief history of your business. Therefore, it’s also known as company summary, history or description.

Company overview section should be included after the executive summary section of your business plan. 

A successful business plan should include following sections;

  • Executive summary – It’s placed at the beginning of your business plan but written at the end after writing all other sections.
  • Company overview
  • Organisation structure and management
  • Market analysis
  • Product and services
  • Marketing and Sales Strategy
  • Funding request
  • Financial projection

In the company overview section, your main objective should be about your business background such as what you do and what makes your business unique. 

You should also let your potential investors know how you overcome adversity to launch your idea of a new business and how you have succeeded in it so far.

It’s a quick and easy way for readers to understand the business, idea behind it, promoters behind it, target market, how the entity stands out from competitors.

Potential investors will be interested to know whether you will be able to return their investment with dividend in future. Therefore, they will relate all these factors to your business to know how all these factors can help you to succeed in your new business.

While writing you should focus first on how you started the journey and the idea that led you to start your business in the first place. 

To write a company overview section in your business plan, you should focus on the following key points. 

Key Points to include in company overview section of business plan

Here are the key points that will enable you to write an effective company overview section in your business plan. 

Certain points are in the form of questionnaires, try to answer those questions in your company overview section. Including all points will grab your reader’s interest.

  • Who are you? 
  • What is your business name? 
  • When and how your organisation was formed? 
  • Where is your business located? 
  • Where is your business’s headquarter? 
  • What is the legal business structure?
  • how large the company is?
  • Management and Promoter’s personal history, Educational qualification, Skills, Strengths and work experience.
  • Mission statement – should be clear to represent the main purpose of business.
  • Origin of the idea and how you have transformed that one idea into a business.
  • What you do – Description of product and/or services, what problem your business solves and how they help customers. Remember, if your lenders and investors don’t understand what you are selling, they might not take interest in your concept.
  • What you want to accomplish, a brief overview of what you plan to sell and to whom, what is your plan for growth.
  • What sets you apart in the marketplace to succeed? SWOT analysis can be included.
  • Relevant key milestones achieved during the business journey. Your past accomplishments will be the best indicators for your readers to be sure of potential future success.
  • Problems you have faced and how you have overcome them.
  • Target market, Market opportunity and how you will succeed.

Legal business structure means the organisational structure of your business. How do you function? Are you working as a sole proprietor, partnership firm or formed a limited company?

Investors and lenders take interest to put their money in private limited companies compared to a proprietorship or partnership business. We have written a different article to know why investors prefer private limited companies.

While writing your company history, you should include images, charts and graphs to grab attention of investors. You can also include testimonials of your customers. It will help potential lenders, investors and partners to draw an accurate impression about your business.

Summarizing your company business can be easy if you are already running your business for years. However, writing company overviews for a new business can be tricky as you will be in the planning stage. 

How to write company overview section for a new company

If your business is brand new then to write company history, you can take help of following points to let the investor know a little bit about your start-up and more about promoters, so that they can assess the situation and business prospects.

  • Educational background of promoters.
  • Work experience with details of the companies you worked for
  • Start-ups you are working for or already started and their outcomes
  • Technical skills of promoters and area of expertise
  • In which industry are you going to work: retail, wholesale, service, manufacturing, e-commerce, application development, etc. you need to clearly define your type of business.
  • What product or services you will provide, to whom you will provide and how will you provide those items? Remember, you can not sell your products until you know who they are.
  • Explain the problem your product or services will solve? And how is it going to be different from your competitors?
  • Your plan to compensate investors

If you are writing your business plan in order to secure financing, then try to focus on areas that will appeal to your investors and financial institutions to get funds. You should try to include answer to following questions in your company description;

  • Why you are the best person to run the business,
  • How your experience and skills will help the business to succeed, and
  • What is your plan to succeed?

Organising above key information within your company description or summary can be challenging. The main objective of writing company overviews is to get the attention of readers to go through the whole business plan with the objective of investing in it. 

While writing, we suggest you make it clear and concise. You should not include any unnecessary parts or redundant information in it. After writing, you can ask someone else who is not involved in the writing process and has knowledge on a business plan to review it.

You can use the above tips and suggestions to write a company overview section of your project finance report. 

Remember, writing a business plan is not a one time exercise, you have to regularly update as your business expands or changes.

Also Read: What you should do before writing your business plan

is a fellow member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India. He lives in Bhubaneswar, India. He writes about personal finance, income tax, goods and services tax (GST), company law and other topics on finance. Follow him on facebook or instagram or twitter.