Capital is the life that is breathed into an idea, vision or project to keep it running, functional or breathing. It is a catalyst that increases the rate of reaction for the crystallization or materialization of an idea into our physical realm.
I like to explain with an illustration from the bible; when it was time for God to make man, He observed four processes. First God “visionalized”; meaning the idea to make man came to God or it could be put in it differently; God saw the need to make man. Secondly God had a plan; then “God said let us make man in our image, after our likeness: let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth”
Does this not sound like a plan? In fact I can say that there is no business plan more detailed than this.
After the planning stage comes the third stage which I call “the process stage”. This involves the implementation of all the details in the plan; the making of man from dust, putting together all man’s functional parts. If this was a company or organization it would have been putting together all the functional departments, organizational structures, and agreements. Then the fourth stage is the “breath stage”. Everything that has life must breath. So the man God made was lifeless without the breath of the Almighty. “ And the Lord God formed man out of dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul”
This breath of night.
I have people say,” We are yet to start any business because there is no capital.” They have chosen to put capital first in life is what I call capital. So capital is what keeps every vision, idea or business running day and starting a new project because they do not understand the import of stages in business development. Growing a business is like climbing a ladder; the first step must precede the second. To climb to the top you must start from the bottom.
The four processes described above reveals that capital should not come first, it is not the first thing you need in any venture. Rather when an idea is divine and a well thought out plan is in place, attracting capital is easier.
Capital is not what most persons think it is and capital is more than money. In this book though, I will like to deal and major on the fiscal or monetary capital. This kind of capital involves all that money can do in establishing an idea or business. But I submit that this is not the only form of capital.
Capital also includes; intellectual, mental, social, or spiritual resources. These other forms of capital, including fiscal can impact in bringing a vision to bear.
So capital is the pulling together of external resources. It is the oxygen required for a fresh business, idea, vision to survive and become productive and keep running.
Every business needs capital. Every business I say needs one form of capital or the other.
I have chosen to deal only on the fiscal or monetary form of capital in this book; this is not intended to suggest that this form of capital is superior to the others. All other aspects of capital are needful and should not be undermined.
Remember that raising capital is also the pulling together or attracting external resources for a business or vision to start running. These resources could be from the person starting the business or it can be given to him/her in trust for the business e.g loans or fund injection.
Since capital is the oxygen every new business needs to breath or the catalyst that will speed up her production and reproduction processes, for the business to start giving back for every naira or dollar invested. It is of utmost importance to learn the various ways or options to raise capital. The option that best suits may depend on variables like;
v Amount needed
v Financial literacy of the investor
v Amount of risk the investor is ready to bear
v Time intervals needed to raise the capital.
There are various means of raising fiscal capital for any business venture or idea, and the option to choose depends largely on the business and mode of implementation.