Well known author Seth Godin is running an alternative MBA program and he had his class of 9 come up with 111 business ideas each. That list is posted here. Here are the first 21 ideas as well to give you a sampling. Why 21? I'd liked #21!!
- Prepackaged school supplies based on the lists from the school districts
- Incubator site providing office space, hosting, etc. for startups that are seed funded.
- In-grocery store prep service (buy vegetables first and drop them off to be chopped to your specs - pick them up on the way to checkout)
- A website that you can submit your design and work with vendors to manufacture your own clothes line.
- Online discount brokerage that has no closing hours and provides access to all exchanges throughout the world and handles currency and legal issues automatically.
- Stamphead, where stamps can be custom made in the likeness of an avatar the user creates.
- Aggregator site for affiliate marketers to collect daily reports. Would work on a tiered pricing structure giving you more info the higher up you go. Basic would be for people like me who just want to know if they made something and how much; advanced would pull down all available data.
- A gadget to cook beans/lentils/vegetables/rice for the same amount of time (quicker than what can be done in a slow cooker.)
- Herbal Flavored Gum. MMM...rosemary.
- Church issued credit card with automatic 10% for religious tithing
- Brainstorm Consulting - Teach companies how to brainstorm
- Create a website for non-profits and a list of their projects/needs and a similar list for foundations. Its a central meeting place for people to look for funding from the right people.
- Tutorial videos for technological skills (word processing, internet applications, email) for people who don't know how to navigate technology but need it.
- Website where musicians can collaborate on tracks
- Signs in restaurants on menus that list all the ingredients.
- Network of chefs that rotate being personal chefs
- Nuclear waste storage facilities completely removed from society.
- Hedge fund that makes bridge loans to homeowners facing foreclosure.
- Small-town / city - websites (through city and Chamber of Commerce) - most small town websites are terrible
- whistle It.com: download audio of people whistling popular songs.
- A food service where you can email them your mom's recipes and have them make it for you and deliver it during lunch time.
Then if you are really ready to step out, you can write your business plan from one of these 999 ideas and submit to Mark Cuban and his Open Source Funding plan
and if you can show break-even in 60 days and profit in 90 with a plan for repaying Mark with interest, you've got your seed fund source! Read Cuban's plan here
. The basics are here:
1. It can be an existing business or a start up.
2. It can not be a business that generates any revenue from advertising. Why ? Because I want this to be a business where you sell something and get paid for it. Thats the only way to get and stay profitable in such a short period of time.
3. It MUST BE CASH FLOW BREAK EVEN within 60 days
4. It must be profitable within 90 days.
5. Funding will be on a monthly basis. If you dont make your numbers, the funding stops
6. You must demonstrate as part of your plan that you sell your product or service for more than what it costs you to produce, fully encumbered
7. Everyone must work. The organization is completely flat. There are no employees reporting to managers. There is the founder/owners and everyone else
8. You must post your business plan here, or you can post it on slideshare.com , scribd.com or google docs, all completely public for anyone to see and/or download
9. I make no promises that if your business is profitable, that I will invest more money. Once you get the initial funding you are on your own
10. I will make no promises that I will be available to offer help. If I want to , I will. If not, I wont.
11. If you do get money, it goes into a bank that I specify, and I have the ability to watch the funds flow and the opportunity to require that I cosign any outflows.
12. In your business plan , make sure to specify how much equity I will receive or how I will get a return on my money.
13. No mult-level marketing programs (added 2/10/09 1pm)
So what do you think? Ready to start a business?