Since moving to Tucson I have "catered" three events. At each I fed about 100 people with great reviews at all three. One of the events was an child-adoption party for the VP of my employer. I was approached by a gentleman at this party who complimented me on the brisket, PB and ribs. He asked if I had ever considered doing this "for a living."
I explained to him that while I would love to, I simply do not have the funds to buy all that is needed to do so. I told him about Southern Yankee's BBQ website (www.sybbq.com
) and a little about the catering/food festival rigs that they offer and their costs of between $30-$60k.
He said, "If you are serious in pursuing this, come up with a business plan that allows you to start part-time on the weekends catering or setting up at a Farmers Market, Lowe's or Home Depot. I own a couple of local restaurants and depending upon your plan, I will consider providing financial backing to get you started."
I do not know this guy at all nor have I ever been to his restaurants. I asked why he would offer to do this for a complete stranger and he replied, "You have an obvious love for what you do in regard to BBQ. I have watched you all evening move through this crowd receiving accolades from everyone who tried your food. My start was given to me by a complete stranger and I have been living a dream ever since. I will help you if you are serious and can provide me with a short and long-term business plan."
Needless to say, I was a little speechless. He went on to say his only expectation from me was the simple repayment of his investment within 3-5 years.
I know NOTHING about putting together a business plan.