Bachelor thesis: [8,000 – 12,000 words]
The word count includes the Executive summary, Business overview, Market research and analysis, Business proposal, Financial analysis, and Conclusion. The cover page, declaration of authorship, acknowledgements, list of abbreviations, list of tables, list of figures, table of contents, appendices, tables, figures, and references are not included in the word count.
Business plan: A thesis that involves the creation of a viable business plan, with an idea and framework for the development of a business, using market research and other appropriate business development tools.
List of Abbreviations
SME Small and medium-sized enterprises
CEO Chief executive officer
List of Tables
Table 1 List of …
Table 2 Results of …
List of Figures
Figure 1 Chart …
Figure 2 Pie chart …
Table of Contents
Thesis Rules (delete this section from the thesis) 2
Declaration of Authorship 4
List of Abbreviations 6
List of Tables 7
List of Figures 8
Table of Contents 9
Executive Summary 10
1. Business Overview 11
2. Market Research and Analysis 12
3. Business Proposal 15
4. Financial Analysis 16
5. Conclusion 17
Helpful resources (delete this section from the thesis) 21
Your summary should briefly:
Say what the problem is,
Say why it is important,
Say what the proposed solution is.
Justify why your topic area is worth investigating in the first place; outline the main issues and summarize the contents of the sections which are to follow, explaining the rationale of their content. By the time the reader gets to the end of the summary, they should have a clear idea of what the thesis is all about, why it is relevant, and what to expect in the ensuing sections. This is where you present the structure of the business plan and the purpose of each section.
Make sure that you are clear at this stage about which of the 3 available approaches you are pursuing in your work:
Please note that all three approaches involve the need to do original research.
Keywords: [Xxxx, Xxxx, Xxxx, Xxxx, Xxxx]
This section should comprise 2% of the total word count (approximately).
1. Business Overview
For several decades , it has been a real struggle to take care and manage Alzeihmer patients on a daily basis . First , from society’s perspective it is difficult to recognize them and therefore treat them fairly (Alzheimer conseil,2022) whether it’s in Europe, Africa, the Middle east… Alzheimer’s patients are facing the same behavior of the people around them in the street . Also , These types of diseases can affect a person’s ability to function independently in terms of social skills and general behavioral . Last but not least , the lack of public knowledge and many other problems related to detecting and diagnosing the disease can be challenging even for daily tasks and can make the job even tougher. (Demence, september,2021).
The proposed solution is to raise awareness about the impact of Alzheimer’s on not only the patient’s life but also on their partner and family members by launching the first clothing brand “A.L&F” that tracks the Alzhimer patients . Tracking is only available to close family members and can be either by a GPS and the process.
“A.L&F” is the only brand offering you trachable clothes allowing you to track your loved ones suffering from this disease and ensure their safety while giving them the chance to keep a normal daily life without imprisoning them. Crimes against people with this disease have grown rapidly in recent years, and our goal is to help you locate them and make sure they are safe.
Moreover, the business will have a huge impact on people’s lives making it easier and safer . An universal logo will be associated with the brand in order to raise awareness around the world about the importance of this disease.
The proposed business type is merchandising . A social entrepreneurship business will be established in the capital of Tunis , Tunisia and will be further expanded to Africa and the Middle East and maybe Europe in the future. The brand will be selling trackable clothing pieces and accessories in order to help Alzeihmer patients get detectable in case of loss or help.
In this section, provide an overview of the business, the context, the rationale of the plan, and the uniqueness of the idea.
This section should include the following points:
Problem: What is the problem?
Solution: What is the solution?
Overview of the business: What is the proposed business (Type, Form, etc.)?
What is the value proposition?
Motivation/Importance of the business and its impact on the context or society (include ethical ramifications)
Uniqueness of the idea: What makes this business different/successful?
This section should comprise 15% of the total word count (approximately).
2. Market Research and Analysis
A business plan must be grounded in solid research that is verifiable. The market research and analysis establishes that the research is rigorously and comprehensively grounded, and is based on a body of existing published information, relevant to the study. The market research and analysis:
Should demonstrate a comprehensive grasp of the context/industry/sector/market in which the proposed business will be located and an awareness of relevant and contemporary topics in the industry/sector/market.
Should demonstrate a comprehensive grasp of the target market and the competitors therein (direct and indirect).
Must use relevant primary and/or secondary sources; must be critical, not merely descriptive; and must bring together the various pieces of information to create a clear business case i.e. to what extent the new business will be viable.
This section should explicitly cover the following areas:
Macro-environmental analysis (e.g. PESTLE analysis)
Competitive position (e.g. SWOT)
Competitive advantage (e.g. Porter’s five forces, value chain, value network)
Business case: Demand for the proposed business
Students should ensure that their market research is drawn from current sources, ideally within the last 5 years (unless a business classic). Citing your sources is critical to establishing your credibility and for illustrating how you arrived at the conclusions and figures you present in your business plan. Select reputable sources for your research. Whenever possible, use:
Primary sources*: Interviews with subject-matter experts or direct research of potential customers
Secondary sources: Government agencies, business schools or universities, books, articles published in reputable journals, market reports or industry insights by commercial sources e.g. Gartner, and websites of well-respected organizations. Use websites that end in .gov, .edu, or .org.
Avoid using Wikipedia as a source. Instead, examine the citations used on the Wikipedia article.
*If you gather information that is not publicly available, you need to carefully consider data protection regulations and if necessary, prepare ethics review forms and/or ask participants to sign consent forms (a consent statement could be included on the cover page of the questionnaire).
You need to present your own data, sources, and modifications. You should simply describe the name and sources of the data you are using and the period it covers. For example, how you got the data and are they primary or secondary sources? Describe what the unit of observation is and how many observations you have. Discuss limitations of the data such as missing variables, missing observations, survey response, small number of observations, etc.
The market research could begin with Google Scholar. It is crucial to develop a set of keywords that are related to the topic of interest.
A keyword is a word that has been used to describe a concept or ideas relevant to this topic. So, for example, if a business plan aims to establish a digital marketing firm in Egypt, the following sets of keywords could be identified:
Social media marketing
Try different sets of these keywords in Google and see what results you get. As you read these, note down more keywords, as well as the names of books/articles/reports/databases that are mentioned. You can then search for these books and articles using Google Scholar, Google Books and your EBSCO account.
Every time you find a relevant source, write down the name and author and try to find either the abstract or read a part of the introduction. Note down answers to these questions:
What is the main argument?
How does it link to other work you’ve found on this topic?
You should start to build up a list of dozens of relevant sources. Remember to search for work that is relevant in terms of methodology. If you plan to use interviews, for example, you should be able to find plenty of examples of other researchers who have used this approach in their work. Finding out how they carried out their research can save time and help avoid making obvious mistakes (just make sure you cite the original!).
When presenting your findings:
Include summaries of the raw data of your research.
Include raw and extensive data in the appendix or in an online database to which you provide the link. Inform your readers how they can access the full raw data.
This section should comprise 30% of the total word count (approximately).
3. Business Proposal
In this section, you should present the business plan, based on the findings of the market research and analysis section and the original research undertaken.
This is where you present the proposed product, service, and/or business in a detailed manner. After reading this section, one should be able to understand the details of the proposition, its competitive edge, the relevant business model, the pricing model, and the functional plans for the business e.g. Operational, marketing. Decisions and plans presented in this section should be based on the market research section (consumer analysis, industry analysis, business case, etc.).
Remember the importance of the context. This is a small-scale business plan, designed to demonstrate your mastery of identifying a specific need or problem and systematically using established research and other appropriate techniques to satisfy the need or solve the problem.
This section should cover the following points:
Product/service (more detailed)
Business model and pricing
This section should comprise 35% of the total word count (approximately).
4. Financial Analysis
This section focuses on the feasibility of the proposed business, product, and/or service. This is where you present current and/or projected financial statements. This section should present readers with complete financial statements (balance sheet, income statement, cash flow, changes in equity/retained earnings). These statements could be based on a worst-case, average, or best-case scenario. Regardless which scenario is used, the statements should be reasonable and grounded on solid market research and analysis.
This section is of utmost importance. Remember who your audience is i.e. Who is reading your business plan (investors, venture capitalists, etc.). This section should also include a breakeven analysis to indicate the point at which you are expected to “break even” i.e. Total revenues and total costs are equal.
This section should cover the following points:
Projected start-up expenses
Capital requirements and investment/financing
Projected financial statements (if possible around 5 years)
Statement of cash flow
Statement of changes in equity/retained earnings
Break Even analysis and performance metrics
Place complete results, such as extensive tables, in an appendix, particularly if the volume of this information interrupts the flow of the text.
This section should comprise 10% of the total word count (approximately).
The final chapter places the business plan in context and offers conclusions and recommendations that follow the development of the plan itself. The focus here should be on the implementation of the plan and key points to consider for the development of the business to ensure or enhance its viability. This is where implementation challenges are discussed and strategies/recommendations to overcome these challenges are presented. The strategies/recommendations may appear as a list beginning with the principal points and addressing policy and practice, as appropriate.
The recommendations should follow this logic:
This section should comprise 8% of the total word count (approximately).
Poor referencing will be marked down; hence you should give full details of all books, articles, reports, etc., cited as references in your study.
The reference list includes all those materials cited in the thesis and should also include any published source of information that was consulted during the process of thesis completion.
The APA 7th edition (American Psychological Association) format is required for references and in-text citations. You can find a quick reference guide here. Additionally, you can find reference examples here and here.
Remember, references should be listed in alphabetical order.
The appendices include information needed to comprehend, support, and evaluate the thesis. Information is placed in the appendices because it is a distraction to the narrative flow of the text.
These should only include material that has been referred to in the business plan, but which for reasons of style you do not wish to include in the main body of your work. Raw data, reference tables, regulations, copy questionnaires, list of interviewees etc. should all be in an appendix.
This material should support the main findings. If it is not referenced in the body then it should not be treated as merely an opportunity to add an impressive thickness to your study in an attempt to compensate for lack of authentic depth in the text!
Helpful resources (delete this section from the thesis)
Here are some helpful resources that you can consult to help clarify some of the key steps in writing a thesis.