I don’t know if I understand the results of this survey completely. From what I have read from an article at the Houston Business Journal business banking is all about customer service. At least this is what the article is conveying. I believe that the article states to the reader in thinking that customer experience is one of the main variables in improving the bottom line for a business bank. This is interesting considering that so many transactions occur online with business banking and PDA transactions. I cannot argue with the fact that 6500 businesses participated in the survey, but honestly, did this survey really disclose anything proprietary? Most industries rely on some sort of relationship. We used to call these relationships sales, but now we tend to outsource them as a customer service function. At best, I think that this survey could lead the few banks still around to create a larger sales force and drop the centralized call center. The concept of the user “experience” is important to consider when planning your new venture, because it generates goodwill. Over time, if your company becomes large and successful, the goodwill can actually become capitalized on the balance sheet and add hefty premium when you decide to sell your company and retire to the Bahamas.
I read the article written by David Port at Entrepreneur.com article and I must agree with the many critics that state the problems with the SBA. I never hear about the opportunities available through the SBA program. For the past 7 years, the ability to take out a home equity line of credit has provided a better way for small companies to raise capital. Now that most of the banks are gone, where do small businesses go to get the capital that is typically needed to help a company through an economic cycle such as we are in. I don’t know exactly what the SBA needs to do to validate the integrity of an entity helping out the little guy, but they need to act quickly. It would make sense to create some sort of incubator style partnership creates synergies amongst startups. The beginning phase is so tough and there is a strong need for more sweat equity, planning, and motivation. Maybe the SBA should keep this in mind now that funding of most conventional forms of debt leverage are fading away.
If you take a look at this blog entry under bootstrapper.com (http://www.bootstrapper.com/2008/10/27/venture-capital-slams-wall-street/ ), you will see that start-ups (although still risky) have actually performed better than big bad Wall Street this year. Capital West Advisors is not an investment consulting company and does not recommend investments under our service offerings, but we do consult with startups. Although we cannot act upon this information, we like to read of the successes of startups. Better returns from startups means that the industry is doing well in its analysis of companies and the transparency of the business plans. Capital West Advisors is involved in business planning and capital introduction, so we are available to discuss these offerings for all of the future successful entrepreneurs looking for guidance.