Ben Lines, you make a lot of threads I like.
I am an entrepreneur. I love the work that I do, I have the greatest time, to me, it's not even like work, it's fun. I'm extremely ambitious and determined.
I absolutely believe I can be as successful as Branson. But I know it's not guaranteed. I'm one of those people that risks a little bit, I could have gone to uni, worked a 9-5 job, probably on 30k or so in , rising to 100k eventually. It would have been safe, and boring. But, that way, I'm never going to be super rich. Not that money is everything, I love the creativity and the freedom of being in charge as well. With entrepenerialism, I know that it's possible, that I will never be a billionaire, but there's a decent chance.
I have been fairly successful if I'm honest. My most successful business (food related, sorry no more details,) leads the market in it's field in scotland, and we are aggressively moving towards leadership of the UK market. I don't want to list figures. We also have a large amount of sales in Cuba.
Another business I'm running is doing good (clothing). We just need to wait six months and our projected profits are 5 figures this year. We are lower on price than every one of our competators, and our quality of goods is better, we just need word of mouth to spread us around. We recently moved into new premises, it's going fantastic.
But I know that both of these businesses have limited potential. The maximum profit per year for each of them is not going to be over a million for either of them, I'm afraid the market in the UK is just not big enough for either of them. We're investigating branching out internationally, but I don't think this has massive potential.
That's why I still want to go to uni, for physics. I might go for a PhD as well. I need the knowledge to develop ideas with real potential, things that there will be a large market for. At the very least, I need the knowledge to be able to oversee and manage experts in their fields.
Going back to the intial capital needed questions -
I have run a few projects and only the most recent one has started to bring some real revenue in and I believe thats due to proper planning. I have put minimal money (less than £20 start up) into all my ventures and I recently got a very nice advertising contract from my street art site.
I personally believe though that through determination, effort and good planning a business can flourish.
Again, i like to keep my cards close to my chest but I'm looking at increasing the size of my blogging network over the next year. Hopefully upto 4 new sites before 2010.
When you come up with a business idea which you believe has potential DO THE MARKET RESEARCH!
There is no point in venturing in a saturated market when your competitors have a larger marketing budget.
Also if your lacking funds, you can always try and gain capital from external sources.
Business Link (not sure)
Business Angels and or Venture Capitalist.
Note that most of those above will not consider your application if you ask for a non disclosure agreement first (a way to prevent others from stealing your ideas).
I am currently on the verge of launching one of my new projects (online at first). Found the perfect business partners and enough capital to get it off grounds.
"We" deal in Recruitment, Marketing, Real Estate, Web Solutions, and many other side businesses which I cannot bother to list down.
If anyone here is looking for investors please send me a pm
I wouldn't label myself as an entrepreneur but yeah, I try. You have to find a niche in the market for your business to become successful, even if you do find one there are no guarantees.
Currently I'm running a load of incentive sites. There not mega successful but it's generating a decent profit.