This plan will use AH4U technologies for the infrastructure of the building. AH4U will fund this project when a municipality, corporation or individual puts a financial guarantee in place. The following document is not a offering but should be used for information purposes only.
“Thanking and Helping the past and present Veterans of our Armed Forces”
1.0 Executive Summary
The purpose of this business plan is to raise a credit line for the launch of a national chain of SOS Centers. These centers will provide a great ROI to local investors, house homeless and transitional Veterans, supply needed PTSD counseling, be a resource center for vets, provide vocational training to our returning Veterans and bring communities together to help and thank our past and present Veterans. Each SOS Center will have a thrift store. The SOS Centers and thrift stores will employ Veterans and teach them vocations: running a business, marketing, computer programming, and repairing goods. A portion of profits from these Centers will fund Supporting our Servicemen, Inc. (“SOS”) a California based 501(c)3 organization.
The thrift stores will be called “Wadda Ya Got?”, and they will sell gift cards, new goods being supplied from our SOS member stores (American Apparel, Toyota products, restaurants and others), celebrity paraphernalia, movie props and used items from everyone else.
SOS was founded by Lester M. Cook III.
1.1 Products and Services
Currently, America‘s overall veteran population is 19,946,644 (2,131,939 in California alone.) There are an estimated 49,000 homeless veterans living in California, more than any other state. Of these, 18,000 homeless vets are located in the Greater Los Angeles area and growing.
According to the West Los Angeles VA Homeless Coordinator, there is a shortfall of housing available to meet the needs of the 18,000 homeless veterans in the Greater Los Angeles Area. The VA processes 60-70 homeless veterans a day, but their facility is not large enough to handle the increasing numbers of homeless vets. So the VA refers the homeless to local nonprofit community shelters and other charitable establishments.
In Los Angeles County, there are 25 organizations that provide services to the civilian homeless community. However, veterans do not go to the all civilian facilities because they are not veteran specific. It is difficult for veterans to relate to others who have not shared a soldier’s life.
The few organizations that are veteran specific are not located in the Greater Los Angeles area. The closest nonprofit veteran specific homeless shelter is in Inglewood which is twelve miles from the heart of Los Angeles. There is a definite need for a veterans shelters.
A SOS Center will be a five story building built by Veterans and replicated across country. They will be built by Veterans while teaching apprentice Veterans trades. The latest Green technologies will be implemented in the design. If we remodel an existing building we still train and use Veterans for construction services. We will use steel container technology for the skeleton of these buildings supplied by Affordable Homes 4U and implement their water purification and other technologies into each building.
Rooftop – Greenhouse
Fifth Floor – Family housing
Fourth Floor – Single men housing
Third Floor – Single Women housing ( security floor )
Second Floor Health, Wellness and resource Center. Incorporating the latest modern methods and technologies for healing our Veterans, PTSD counseling, exercise equipment, acupuncture, rehabilitation services, nutrition education and psychological sessions. Resource Center will have Job training, resume service, job placement, conference room.
Ground Floor – ‘Wadda Ya Got?’ thrift store.
SOS Centers are being designed by the prestigious firm Southwest Museum Services from Houston, Texas.
Thrift stores will be to help further fund SOS operations, employ Veterans and offer vocational training while showing a healthy ROI to investors that fund its Centers. They will be called “Wadda Ya Got.” Through its stores the Company intends to sell new items from its member stores (Quantum Technologies, American Apparel items, gift cards) celebrity and military paraphernalia from signed items to movie props, used men’s and women’s clothes and shoes, autos, bikes, antiques and other items. After the business begins its operations, the Company will launch an online ordering platform to generate sales on a nationwide basis, a computer display will list large products and other items we have available. These additional sales will allow the business to reach profitability very quickly.
SOS is seeking a $75,000,000 financial guarantee, AH4u parent company Spartacus International will fund the project. The financing will be used for the following:
- Development and launch of ten SOS Centers and Thrift Shop locations. Some locations for our thrift stores will be donated.
- Financing for the first year of operation.
1.3 Mission Statement
By establishing SOS Centers and “WADDA YA GOT?” Thrift stores in communities across America we accomplish our main goal which is to help and thank our past and present Veterans, and supply needed PTSD counseling and vocational services. Veterans will be housed and trained on how to run the Centers, thrift store, repair goods and learn trades. Locals will learn of our organization while frequenting the stores and join. SOS members offer discounts on their products and services to our past and present Veterans as a way to thank them for their service.
1.4 Management Team
Lester M. Cook III – Founder / Chief Visionary Officer
David R. Goddard – Director of Financing
Montee Doverspike – COO
Saul A. Escudero – Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing
Bob Shea – Director of Thrift Store operations California
Charles D’Andradde – President of SOS Centers Texas
Sybil Presley – President of SOS Centers Tennessee
Edwin Rinn – President of SOS Centers Indiana
Etta Lassiter Douglas – Director of Entertainment Vegas
David Eastis – CPA
David Beichtman – Legal
RESUMES AND BIOS of Management Team (Please refer to “EXHIBIT A” to the Business Plan)
Financial Advisor – FWH Financial Group has been one of the finest CPA firms in Los Angeles and will serve as a financial adviser to the company.
FWH Financial Group
12387 Lewis Street, Suite 101, Garden Grove, CA 92840
1.5 Housing & Thrift income Forecasts
Here is an example of the revenue that one 29 unit in Los Angeles creates
In focusing on the location of 101 Dudley Ave, Venice Beach, the following information will apply:
- Asking price $4,500,000 ( Government grant returns 65% of cost of bldg. and remodel)
- 29 units are available
- 11 parking spaces, with 9,000 sq ft.
- Cost for relocating current residents, is 7,500 and 15,000 each, could run upwards of $435,000 by itself.
- Current levels are at 80% occupancy rate for similar projects being run at this time.
- Current expenses are running an average of $129,000 for this property.
- Taxes 56,000
- Utilities 1500
- Rep, 21,000
- Management fees 16,000
- License 5,000
- Pest control 900
- Trash pick up 900
- Reserves 3187
- Total Expenses 129,000
- Per diem income would be $1,373,125,
taking the $125 daily X 29 rooms, X 365 X 80% = $1,058,500 .
- The zoning is R3-1 and considered medium residential.
SOS expects these thrift stores to be very successful, research has found that NONE are for sale which indicates they are making money. The following internet quotes are from articles about thrift stores. Industry standard is that for every one dollar invested return is three dollars.
Christianne Ray, Goodwill Southern California: “We’ve actually had an increase in sales, and we’ve had an increase in donations too,” she said.
“How’s this for an unorthodox economic indicator: Stores selling secondhand merchandise on the cheap are absolutely booming. This isn’t merely a Southern California phenomenon. Thrift stores are booming everywhere from Modesto, California, to Kansas City, Missouri, and beyond. The Savers chain of non-profit thrift stores opened its 250th store last fall, and at least 19 more locations opened in 2011.” Brad Tuttle is a reporter at TIME. Find him on Twitter at @bradrtuttle.
You can also continue the discussion on TIME’s Facebook page and on Twitter at @TIME. Read more: http://business.time.com/2011/07/27/its-a-great-time-to-be-in-the-thrift-store-business/#ixzz2KW8CNcMu
Throughout America, thrift stores have been on the rise in popularity, from small towns to major metros, and everything else in between. Ventura itself has 12 thrift stores, two of which opened in the last two years. Despite the fact that the thrift store industry is thriving, there is a lot of misunderstanding surrounding these types of stores. Even though the name thrift is used to describe these stores, the reality is that many of these stores are in business solely for profit, just like any normal retail store.
1.6 Expansion Plan
The Founder expects that the business will aggressively expand during the first three years of operation. SOS intends to implement marketing campaigns that will effectively target individuals that enjoy supporting a great cause. We plan to ultimately have 7841 SOS Centers nationwide, one in each community that has a Chamber of Commerce.
2.0 Company Summary:
SOS Centers will be a local neighborhood center to house homeless Veterans, have PTSD counseling, show local businesses how they can increase their business while thanking our Veterans and have a thrift store offering discounted items to local communities.
2.1 Registered Name and Corporate Structure
SOS Centers will be the holding company, and each individual Center will be its own SPV offering a healthy ROI to local investors while supporting a great worthwhile cause. “Wadda Ya Got?” will be the name of the Thrift stores, and profits will be directed to Supporting our Servicemen, Inc. which is a California non-profit organization with the EIN #46-0798034.
2.2 Required Funds
At this time we are looking for a $75,000,000 financial guarantee to launch operations.
2.3 Investor Equity
To be mutually agreed upon.
2.4 Management Equity
To be mutually agreed upon.
2.5 Exit Strategy
We plan on no exit strategy, because, when implemented correctly, SOS Centers and Thrift stores should continue in perpetuity.
3.0 Products and Services:
Veteran vocational training
New and used goods to be sold in our Thrift Store.
3.1 Thrift Shop Products
“Wadda Ya Got?” will be a new type of thrift store.
Celebrity products: Principles in the company have access to celebrity paraphernalia and movie props which are very popular in fund raising, Each store will carry a nice assortment of these items.
New Goods: SOS will have local companies in each community that are members, we will be able to carry some of their products and their gifts cards thus cross promoting our members stores.
Used Items: The Company will actively sell donated items from clothing to antiques to Automobiles.
4.0 Strategic and Market Analysis:
With millions of homeless Veterans housing is urgently needed. Thrift stores thrive in bad and good economies and do better when they are supporting a great charity. It is nearly impossible to find any thrift stores for sale at they do very well. This is a great indicator they are a good investment.
4.1 Economic Outlook
The government grants available for the launch of homeless housing for Veterans make this project a profitable and worthwhile endeavor.
Whether the economy is sluggish or prospering thrift stores have always done well as evidenced by the lack of any for sale on the market.
4.2 Industry Analysis
The direct retail sale of apparel (including in a thrift shop capacity) to the end user is a $150 billion dollar a year industry in the United States. This growth rate for this industry has been tremendous over the last ten years. Growth is expected to occur at a rate of 4% to 5% on an annual basis. Retail sales operations are a slightly riskier operation to maintain. This is due to the fact that there are significant costs in maintaining a high end retail location in an urban or upscale suburban market. There failure rate for these businesses is approximately 65% for the first five years of operations. Management is currently building a number of proprietary marketing and pricing models to help ensure the continued success of the Company. One of the most exciting areas of retail trade is the ability to have a virtual store online. Management fully anticipates that once retail operations commence, the Thrift Store will develop a streamlined method for our end user client. This will allow them to order, purchase, and make transportation arrangements without having to visit our retail location.
4.3 Customer Profile
Veterans in every community need a local place to meet, get counseling, have a place to live if they are homeless and learn a trade.
The Thrift Store’s average client will be a middle to upper middle class man or woman living in the Company’s target market. Common traits among clients will include:
- Annual household income exceeding $30,000 •Lives or works no more than 15 miles from the Company’s location. • Will spend $100 per visit to the Thrift Shop.
4.4 Competitive Analysis
Management strongly believes that if a donor has a choice in their area to give to Goodwill, The Salvation Army, Out of The Closet or a church he will give to support our local heroes, the past and present service men and women of the armed forces at a designated SOS thrift shop.
5.0 Marketing Plan:
SOS Centers and “Wadda Ya Got?” thrifts intend to maintain an extensive marketing campaign that will ensure maximum visibility for the business in its targeted market. Below is an overview of the marketing strategies and objectives of the Thrift Shop.
5.1 Marketing Objectives
- Maintain a committed program for divesting the Thrift Shop’s inventories through online distribution channels including its website at www.supportingourservicemen.org.
- Implement a local campaign with the Company’s targeted market via the use of flyers, local newspaper advertisements, its website and word of mouth.
- Develop an online presence by further developing our website and placing the Company’s name and contact information with online directories.
5.2 Marketing Strategies
SOS intends on using a number of marketing strategies that will allow the SOS Centers and Thrift Store to easily target men and women within the target market. These strategies include government ad Veteran websites, traditional print advertisements and ads placed on search engines on the Internet. Below is a description of how the business intends to market its services to the general public. The Thrift Store will also use an internet based strategy. This is very important as many people seeking local services, such as vintage clothing stores, now the Internet to conduct their preliminary searches. SOS will register the Company with online portals so that potential customers can easily reach the Thrift Store business.
The Company will also develop its own online website. The Company will maintain a sizable amount of print and traditional advertising methods within local markets to promote the vintage apparel that the Company is selling. Additionally, the business will maintain extensive online distribution channels that allow the business to make divestitures of thrift store clothing on an online basis through by producing listings on eBay and Amazon.com. This will allow the business to maintain a nationwide distribution channel(s) that allows acquired inventories of thrift store clothing to be immediately sold among people within the United States and abroad. This is one of the key aspects to maintaining the profitability and cash flow of the business as the Thrift Shop progresses through its operations.
All goods are donated or are on consignment, SOS will give away certain items to Veterans in need and have a very competitive pricing structure which will compete with other thrift stores. We will have many volunteers through the local court volunteer program thus lowering costs and allowing us to be competitive in price.
6.0 Organizational Plan and Personnel Summary:
“Wadda Ya Got” Thrift stores will hire Managers for each store, we will give first opportunity to any un-employed Veterans. Veterans will train at one of our stores before being put into management. Each store will have volunteer employees being supplied by local courts which have a program that allows traffic fines to be worked off in community Service.
6.1 Corporate Organization
Each thrift store will be a separate SPV with a management team. It will give a standard ROI to the investors and overall profits will be going to the 501C3, Supporting our Servicemen, Inc.
6.2 Organizational Budget
Rent, salaries, advertising will be within industry standards.
7.0 Financial Plan:
7.1 Underlying Assumptions
- The Thrift Store will have an annual revenue growth rate of 16% per year.
- Millions of Veterans are homeless and need housing.
- The loan will have a 10 year term or less with a 0% interest rate.
7.2 Sensitivity Analysis
In the event of an economic downturn, history shows that thrift stores survive if not thrive. High gross margins generated by the business will ensure that the business will maintain profitability despite deleterious economic conditions.
7.3 Source of Funds
Private Investors, Corporations
Possibly Private Equity Fund Institutions in the future.
7.4 General Assumptions
Thrift stores are nearly always successful, one that supports a popular charity succeed faster and longer.
7.5 Research and supporting articles
8.0 Commendation Letters: (Please refer to “EXHIBIT B” to the Business Plan)
RESUMES AND BIOS OF MANAGEMENT TEAM
LESTER M. COOK III – Founder / Chief Visionary Officer
Mr. Cook is a third generation Californian from Beverly Hills, CA. He was orphaned at age nine, and was on his own at seventeen. He traveled the world as is a self educated entrepreneur. He formed LMC3 Productions, Inc. in 1980 and his first production was Ray Charles 50th B-day concert at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, he produced and directed various music videos, produced a 1984 Olympic video, consulted on films, TV, created many Multi Media projects.
Created the video department at Mammoth Mountain, Calif. Designed video programs, shot ski videos, filmed weather reports and managed the department. In 1996 he created GM Studios, Inc., a TV and Film Post Production facility. Managed 35 employees, oversaw the creation of Portuguese and Spanish translations for Canal Fox, 20th Century Fox’s Latin American broadcast channel, supplied video conversions and full post production to the industry.
VP Sales and Marketing for Legacy Entertainment Services, Inc. – From zero sales at its launch brought the company to the forefront of the product placement business in Hollywood by bringing such accounts as Ace Hardware, LG Electronics, Bentley, and many others. www.legacyus.com
In 2010, Created The Foundation For World Harmony – a non-profit 501C3 organization dedicated to supporting charities worldwide (www.thefoundationforworldharmony.org)
In 2011, Created Supporting our Servicemen, inc. A California non-profit working under the fiscal 501(c)3 sponsorship of FFWH.
Created and runs LMC3 Group International ( www.lmc3.com ) a sales and marketing company.
Wrote and published the Novel ‘Lester’s Legacy’ www.lulu.com.
Resides: Marina del Rey, Ca Contact information: · 310-913-5533 · firstname.lastname@example.org
Married to Daniele Cook, and has two sons: Jason 33 years old, Lester 25 years old
- Attended Canoga Park High School 1969-1972, Pierce College 1972- 1973, traveled extensively around the world 1973-1979.
- Attended and graduated from the Van Nuys Aviation Academy with a SEL rating.
- Cook has spent a lifetime as an entrepreneur, his worldwide travels and experiences in a multitude of trades make him the perfect candidate to bring many elements to a company. His creativity and the unique ability to think ‘outside the box’ are a great asset to anyone or company he works with.
DAVID R. GODDARD – Director of Finance
Mr. David R. Goddard is the President and Director of Spartacus Partners Corporation, a diversified Global Trading and Finance Group based in NY and is Finance Director and Board Member of CSP Productions; a NY based Digital Entertainment Group. His executive experience outside of Wall Street includes being a Partner at Macluan Capital, the oldest private equity firm in Canada, and as the Co- Executive Director and Finance Director of Nordic Management Ltd, a London based Consulting group. He has 30 years of experience in Merchant Banking, Private Equity, Capital Markets and Investment Banking worldwide. He has raised in excess of $4 billion for his clients across various sectors including energy, technology, communications and life sciences business. He is currently a Senior Advisor to iNetworks a Private Equity Firm in Pittsburgh.
Mr. Goddard’s Investment Banking experience includes being a Senior Managing Director at Bear Stearns & Co. where he ran the Global Private Equity Capital Markets. Mr. Goddard was also a Managing Director at BankBoston Robertson Stephens and Managing Director at Chase Securities. He began his Investment Banking career at Bank of America Securities. He earned his MBA from New York University and his BA from St. Lawrence University. Mr. Goddard will be responsible for overseeing SOS finances.
SAUL A. ESCUDERO – Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing
Equipped with over 20 years of experience building sales and managing accounts, and as Vice President of Sales & Marketing for Advent Communications, Saul used his substantive executive experience to launch a multitude of nationwide companies. Saul has also worked with numerous charities and foundations like NFL, NBA, MLB, PGA, and USTA. He brings a wealth of experience in event planning and corporate branding representing luxury brands like Luis Vuitton Hennessey (LVMH).
Throughout his career, Saul has made a name for himself as a strategic thinker and motivational leader. He has been consistently delivering industry-leading results by driving company growth through new product roll outs, strategic market planning, customer acquisition, and brand management. With his leadership skills and networking experience, Saul has the ability to meet or exceed the sales goals, use his marketing intelligence to ensure brand competiveness, and create new effective branding and marketing strategies for any company.