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How to sniff out the money $$$

Updated: Jan 31



Funding Your Street Food Dream: A Guide to Navigating Financial Waters


Starting a street food business is an exciting venture, but let's face it - it requires more than just passion; it requires funds. While the saying "beg, borrow, and steal" might sound a bit extreme, the truth is, sourcing funds from various channels, including family and friends, can be a crucial step in turning your street food idea into reality. Here's a comprehensive guide on where to find money for your business and how to approach it with finesse.


1. Beg, Borrow, but Definitely Don't Steal: The Family and Friends Approach

When it comes to friends and family, transparency and expertise are key. Before reaching out, make sure you've done your homework. Outline your business plan, budget, and expected returns. Be clear about the risks involved and, most importantly, showcase your knowledge of the industry. If they see that you've thoroughly researched your street food venture, they're more likely to invest with confidence.


Get comfortable with your pitch - really invest time in learning your stats and strategies to alleviate risk. Practise the elevator pitch method to really impress people and say to everyone whenever you get the chance - the worst thing they'll tell you to do is shut up.



2. Crowdfunding: Engage Your Community

In the digital age, crowdfunding has become a game-changer for many budding entrepreneurs. Platforms like Kickstarter and Indiegogo allow you to pitch your idea to the public. To make your campaign stand out:

  • Clearly articulate your business ethos. People want to support ventures that align with their values.

  • Offer enticing rewards for backers. It could be exclusive tastings, branded merchandise, or other perks. Ringo's did a cashback offer to a charity of your choice if you donated to the cause - this blended in with our ethos and make sense for us.

  • Create a compelling video that tells your story and showcases your passion.


3. Government Grants: Unlocking Opportunities

Explore government grants that can provide substantial support for your street food business. Here are a few notable options:

  • Prince's Trust: This UK-based organisation offers grants, mentorship, and support to young entrepreneurs. Check their eligibility criteria here.

  • Santander Universities: Some universities collaborate with Santander to provide business grants. Explore opportunities at your institution.

Example: Ringo's Dirty Diner secured over £4000 in grants from Santander when we began. We raised £2000 on Crowdfunder from family & friends, which happened to coincide with Natwest banking Female Foundership Grant that doubled your fundraiser if you were a co-owned or fully female owned business. With that money we bought our trailer and started the business. We actually misses our here, because Natwest would have doubled your money up to £4k so we could have had £8k by the end of our fundraiser if we had worked harder at pushing the message - MORAL OF THE STORY - make sure you're strategic with your fundraisers to make the most out of them.


4. University Grants: Santander’s Support

If you're affiliated with a university, Santander provides grants to foster entrepreneurial initiatives. Connect with your university's entrepreneurship centre to explore available opportunities.


5. Know Your Local Grants: Tapping Into Community Support

Many local governments and organisations offer grants to boost small businesses. Research grants specific to your location and industry.


Conclusion: Crafting Your Funding Strategy

Embarking on a street food business journey requires strategic financial planning. By leveraging family and friends' support, engaging your community through crowdfunding, and tapping into grants from government and private organisations, you can turn your dream into a reality.

Remember, each funding avenue has its unique requirements, so tailor your approach accordingly. With diligence, passion, and a well-thought-out plan, your street food business can secure the financial backing it needs to thrive.


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