Build it and they will come

The adage "build it and they will come" might inspire confidence in business owners contemplating opening a new venue, especially in the context of expanding an existing business. However, in practice, this approach requires careful consideration and strategic planning. As an accountant in Australia, I offer a perspective that balances optimism with realism, highlighting how opening a new venue can impact your existing business and what critical factors you should consider.

 1. Market Research and Feasibility Analysis
   - Assess Demand: Conduct thorough market research to validate the demand for a new venue in your chosen location.
   - Competition Analysis: Understand the competitive landscape and how your new venue can offer something unique or superior.

 2. Impact on Existing Business Operations
   - Resource Allocation: Opening a new venue will require financial and human resources. Assess if this will stretch your existing business too thin.
   - Brand Consistency: Ensure that expanding with a new venue aligns with and supports your existing brand image and values.
   - Customer Base: Consider if the new venue will complement your existing business or compete for the same customer base.

 3. Financial Implications and Planning
   - Initial Investment: Calculate the capital required to build and open the new venue, including construction, fit-out, equipment, and initial operating costs.
   - Cash Flow Management: Project how the new venue will impact your overall cash flow, especially in the initial stages.
   - Profitability Projections: Create realistic financial projections for the new venue and assess how it will contribute to your overall business profitability.
   - Funding: Determine your funding strategy, whether through reinvesting profits, taking out a loan, or seeking investors.

 4. Operational Readiness
   - Staffing: Consider the need for additional staff and the challenge of managing a larger team.
   - Supply Chain Management: Ensure that your supply chain can support the additional venue without disrupting your existing operations.
   - Systems and Processes: Implement robust systems and processes that can handle increased operational complexity.

 5. Regulatory Compliance and Licensing
   - Licensing Requirements: Understand and comply with all regulatory requirements, including liquor licensing, health and safety standards, and local council regulations.
   - Insurance: Ensure adequate insurance coverage for the new venue, including public liability and property insurance.

 6. Marketing and Branding Strategy
   - Promotion: Develop a marketing strategy to attract customers to the new venue. Consider how it will integrate with the marketing of your existing business.
   - Customer Engagement: Engage with your existing customer base to generate interest and support for the new venue.

 7. Risk Assessment and Contingency Planning
   - Identify Risks: Assess potential risks associated with opening a new venue, such as market volatility, unexpected construction costs, or delays in obtaining licenses.
   - Contingency Plans: Develop contingency plans to address these risks.

 8. Measuring Success and Making Adjustments
   - Performance Metrics: Establish clear metrics to evaluate the success of the new venue.
   - Adaptability: Be prepared to make adjustments based on performance data and customer feedback.

While the concept of "build it and they will come" is appealing, opening a new venue requires more than just optimism. It demands a strategic approach, thorough planning, and careful consideration of how it will impact your existing business. Balancing the excitement of expansion with the practicalities of sound business management is key. Engaging with accounting and business advisors can provide invaluable guidance in navigating this complex process, helping to ensure that your new venture is not only built but also thrives and contributes positively to your overall business objectives.