The producer's package might include, for example, a screenplay, a list of credits for key persons attached to the project and a proposed budget, whereas a business plan might include a synopsis of the screenplay, narrative biographies of the key persons attached to the project and a use of proceeds section, which corresponds closely to the budget top sheet.
A business plan can be as simple or as sophisticated as the producer and his or her advisors choose to make it.
This document is very important to independent investors and must be professional, well presented and clear.
I have prepared many film business plans - some large documents, some abbreviated documents.
(3) Relatively easy to assemble-- In the context of the film business, a business plan is merely a specific adaptation of the producer's package, which in turn contains many of the documents a producer would ordinarily generate in the preplanning stages of putting together a film project.
(4) General solicitation permitted--The business plan, properly handled, allows the producer to go out into the marketplace and conduct a general solicitation for a single active investor or other possible combinations, and if not successful in raising the necessary monies using the business plan, the producer may convert his or her offering into a securities offering and then go back and call on those same investors within the context of a securities private placement.
Technically speaking, the business plan is not a financing vehicle or entity but can be used in conjunction with several other investor-financing techniques to raise money for independent feature film projects.
For example, a business plan can be used with an investor-financing agreement to raise money from one or two active investors.
Thus, the business plan becomes a method for conducting a general solicitation while looking for active investors, and if the active investor campaign does not prove successful, then the use of the business plan can be halted, a three or four week interim waiting period can be observed and then the information in the business plan can be converted into a private placement securities offering memorandum for the purpose of seeking investments from a larger group of passive investors.
If the approach is used for the subsequent securities offering, those persons contacted during the active investor general solicitation (using the business plan) may be approached as prospective investors for the private placement since the initial contact with those prospective investors is likely to be sufficient to establish the preexisting relationship which, although not technically required by the federal securities laws, still is an important element in proving that no general solicitation occurred.