Fish Breeder Business Plan

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Executive Summary

The Company
Candlelight Cichlid Breeders (CCB) will provide hard to find tropical fish to aquarists who do not have access to these fish through local pet stores.  CCB will ship live fish to its customers' doors anywhere in the continental United States within one to two days.  CCB will also provide fish to tropical fish retailers within the local area.  CCB will provide convenience and variety not found in the traditional tropical fish selling industry.

Candlelight Cichlid Breeders' assets will consist of livestock watering troughs and aquariums.  The tanks and troughs will be enclosed within an insulated steel building.

CCB will be a sole proprietorship, owned by the founder, Shawn Halsey.  Mr. Halsey plans to operate the business completely by himself for the first two years.  As sales increase, he will bring on a general assistant to help with all aspects of operations.

The Product
Candlelight Cichlid Breeders will provide rare tropical fish from the family Cichlidae.  These fish are known for their colorful appearance and interesting and agressive behavior.  Up to 30 separate cichlid species will be bred by CCB, in addition CCB will import fish that do not readily breed in captivity.

As CCB grows we plan to offer live plants, more types of unusual cichlids, newly discovered species of South American catfish, and possibly some of the more common cichlid species.  We do not plan to offer sales outside of the U.S.

The Market
Research has shown that fish keeping is the second most popular hobby (behind photography) in the U.S.  We conservatively estimate that by the end of this year there will be approximately seven million Internet users who live in the continental U.S.  and own an aquarium.  We estimate that 5% (350,000) of these users will view our site in one year's time and that 2.5% (8,750) of those potential customers will actually buy fish. 

What creates such an opportunity for CCB is that most people do not have access to retail fish shops that regularly carry a large number of different cichlid species.  Some of the most beautiful and interesting cichlids cannot be found in these shops at all.  Furthermore, the current online fish sellers do not have any background and care requirements information for the fish that they sell.  CCB will offer both information on the species we carry and the ability to order the researched fish without having to go to another website.  CCB will be operating in a niche market where established customer loyalty provides significant competitive advantage.  By providing a comprehensive site, CCB expects to create a one-stop experience that will encourage the customer loyalty the company needs.

The company will target two market segments within the fish hobbyist industry.  These are direct online sales to tropical fish collectors and fish retailers in the company's local area.  CCB's largest market segment will be Internet users who live in the continental U.S.  and own an aquarium.

Financial Projections
Our start-up costs include expenses for the building and for equipment.  The start-up costs will be financed by an investor, a bank loan and a small owner investment of initial inventory and equipment.

We expect to achieve our ultimate sales goal by the first few months of 2005 when our breeding stock reaches maximum maturity.  We expect a high degree of profitability from this venture due to high margins and inventory turnover inherent to the industry.

1.1 Objectives

The CCB's most important objectives are:

  1. Find a fast, reliable shipping service.
  2. Sales of $10,000 per month.
  3. Maintain an inventory turnover ratio of six.

1.2 Mission

Candlelight Cichlid Breeders (CCB) will provide hard to find tropical fish from the scientific family Cichlidae to aquarists who do not have access to these fish through local pet stores.  Up to 30 separate cichlid species will be bred by CCB, in addition CCB will import fish that do not readily breed in captivity.  CCB will ship live fish to its customers' doors anywhere in the continental United States within one to two days.  CCB will also provide fish to tropical fish retailers located within 100 miles of the breeding center.  CCB will provide convenience and variety not found in the traditional tropical fish selling industry.

1.3 Keys to Success

  1. Efficiently breed several species of tropical fish.
  2. Quickly and reliably deliver the fish to customers.
  3. Develop a strong reputation within the fish keeping community.
  4. Ensure that all large search engines link to our site.