Join The Roadmap Program Today!
Learn how to find and target the right investors, avoid costly mistakes, and craft convincing proposals that will make investors want to give you money.Click here NOW to Join!
Whether you want to raise $5,000 or $10 million to kick-start your business idea, grow an existing business, or turn around a failing one, the Roadmap Program is a journey that will significantly increase your ability to find, approach, engage and convince potential investors to give you funding.
This is a practical, hands-on, and results-focused program. Please DO NOT JOIN if you’re not willing and ready to put in the work that’s required to get your business the funding it needs.
What exactly is holding you back from raising funds?
I'm John-Paul Iwuoha, and I'll be your host during your membership in the Roadmap Program.
I specialize in solving business problems that relate to finance, strategy, systems, and sales. Since 2013, I have worked with over 400 clients in 16+ countries who are at different stages of starting and growing their businesses in a wide range of industries, from agribusiness to banking, tech, fashion, real-estate, and several others.
My work, opinion pieces and articles have been featured in several local and international media, including CNN, The Huffington Post, Business Day, and LinkedIn Pulse. In 2018, I was named by LinkedIn as one of the global Top Voices on Startups and Entrepreneurship.
So, what exactly is holding you back from raising funds for that business?
Most investors complain that it’s hard to find good businesses to invest in. Entrepreneurs, on the other hand, complain that it's hard to find investors who are willing to invest in their business.
The big reason for this mismatch and confusion is most entrepreneurs who are looking to raise funds are flying blind. Their businesses just don’t meet the requirements that potential investors are looking for.
You see, in these competitive times, raising funds (for any business) requires a shift away from the old ways of thinking. And that's because, the old way of raising capital means you wait, hope, or just keep knocking on doors, and submitting your proposals and business plans all in the belief that someday, your 'luck' will shine.
The problem with this method is it's stressful, frustrating and confusing. And of course, the results are always unpredictable. It's no surprise a lot of entrepreneurs who are unable to raise capital always blame it on poor luck and not having any 'inside connections'.
The Roadmap is the new, logical and predictable way to raise capital.
The system I provide in the Roadmap program is a sequence of logical and interrelated tasks that significantly reduces the stress, confusion, frustration, disappointment and unpredictability of raising capital.
By following the steps, completing the tasks, and applying the strategies in the program, you can improve your abilities to find and approach the right sources of capital for your business, and engage potential investors in a way that best communicates the merits of your business, and convinces them to invest in you.
As an entrepreneur who struggled to raise funding for two of my businesses, I know how stressful and confusing it can be to raise funding to save and support a business. Apart from my personal experience with raising funding, I have observed and studied the progress made by over 100 entrepreneurs as they struggled, failed, and then succeeded to raise funding for their businesses.
That’s why I created the Roadmap program to help entrepreneurs tip the odds of success in their favour.
In the rest of this page, you will find out if you're a good fit for the program, and learn everything you need to make the decision to join the Roadmap membership program.
You can choose either a Standard membership or a Premium membership to meet your personal needs and business goals.
I can’t wait to welcome you inside our special community.
See you inside!
Here's what other entrepreneurs are saying about the program...
"When I joined his program, all I had was a passion for farming, with very little professional business experience. Now, I can talk to real business people and investors and sell my idea. John-Paul is not only an exceptional business advisor, but indeed a mentor. His understanding of market opportunities is unique."
- Musa Darboe, Founder, Maruo Farms
"John-Paul worked with me to develop a compelling business case. He is an experienced business strategist, easy to work with, and very reliable. I strongly recommend his business program."
- Ifeoma Uddoh, Founder, Shecluded
"l learned a whole lot about fundraising and business planning. The program is awesome and very professional. I will very likely recommend it to others."
- Victor Ibekwe, CEO, Finex Microfinance Bank
"My experience working with John-Paul inside the program has been excellent and valuable to me and my business. I strongly recommend his program to every serious entrepreneur out there."
- Fatimoh Muhammad, Founder, Wamufat Farms
Get started now!
Funding is Available and Abundant for those who know how to access it!
Many entrepreneurs often give the common excuse that funding is scarce. This is not only false, it's actually very misleading. If capital is really scarce, how come the volume of investments and loans to entrepreneurs and businesses continue to grow every year?
The truth is, for those who know how to target and access it, funding is not just available; it's abundant! And if you're looking for proof, you don't need to look too far.
Every day, entrepreneurs like you are winning grants, business plan competitions, venture funding, bank loans, and prize awards to start up, support and grow their businesses. These funding amounts often range from just a few thousand dollars to millions of dollars. And even though the investment market is more vibrant in places like the US and Europe, more entrepreneurs in places like Africa, South America and the Middle East are raising funding for their businesses every day!
That's why, every year, these organisations collectively invest over $100 billion in businesses and projects across the world...
Note: This is only a shortlist. There are thousands more like them on every continent.
Across the world, more sources of funding and opportunities to raise capital are opening up. You just need to know two important things: WHO to target and HOW to attract and convince them to fund your business, project or idea.
And that's exactly what the Roadmap Program will help you achieve
The 5 Big Benefits of Joining The Roadmap Program
There are five key ways the Roadmap Program can help you with raising the funds you need to start, grow, or turn around a business.
If you're facing challenges in one or more of these areas, you are going to benefit a lot from your investment and membership in the Roadmap program.
Learn How to Improve Your Chances of Raising Funding
Before you start reaching out to investors, you need to first understand how potential investors are going to assess you and your business. This is known as your "Risk Profile".
Your risk profile is very important because it determines the level of interest investors will have in your business. It also gives you a clue about how much money you can realistically expect to raise from investors, what type of funding you should be focused on, and how fast you could raise the money.
Every business has a different risk profile. That's why it can take one entrepreneur a few months to raise funding, while it takes much longer for another entrepreneur to raise the same amount of funding. That's why trying to raise funding without having a good understanding of your risk profile is like groping in the dark. You're very likely going to face a lot of rejection and frustration, and you may not understand why.
That's why one of the first things you're going to do after you join the Roadmap Program is to complete the Investment Readiness Checklist (IRC).
The Investment Readiness Checklist (IRC) is an important diagnostic tool that helps you to objectively audit your current situation and find out how ready you really are to raise funding from investors.
With over 60 investor-grade questions, this checklist will help you avoid all the guesswork by showing you how investors are really going to assess your business as an investment opportunity. It will help you identify the key strengths in your business that are favourable to investors, and the major weakness and gaps that could turn off investors and negatively affect your chances of raising capital.
The IRC also includes commentary, suggestions, recommendations, tips and advice that will help you close the gaps and weaknesses that could hold you back from raising funding from investors.
Learn How to Find & Target the Right Investors
There are thousands of potential investors out there. But if you don't know what kind of investor you should be looking for, you're going to waste a lot of time and energy chasing the wrong targets. To improve your chances, you need to take a targeted approach.
Inside the Roadmap Program, you will learn how to develop your Ideal Investor Profile. This is the profile of the kind of investors that would be interested in your type of business, and would be more likely to give you funding. With an Ideal Investor Profile, you will instantly know which investors to contact and follow up with, and which ones to ignore.
Also, finding the right investors requires a lot of deep research, especially if you’re doing business in emerging markets like Africa. That’s why we curated the Africa Hot 100 Catalogue to save you a lot of time and frustration.
If you’re an entrepreneur in Africa, or you have business interests in Africa, this catalogue presents you with 100 of the top funding organisations and investment firms that invest billions of dollars in Africa every year.
The catalogue profiles the key sectors and industries these investors typically focus on, the type of capital they invest, notable examples of real businesses and projects they have already funded in Africa, and important contact information you can follow up with, including a physical office address, email, telephone numbers and a website URL.
Learn How to Craft a Compelling Proposal & Pitch
There's a little secret many entrepreneurs don't realize about investors: You have to win their interest first before you can win their investment (money). No matter how much money an investor has, he/she is never going to give you a single dollar if they're not interested enough in your business. Always remember: interest always comes before the investment.
That's why you need to have a compelling proposal and pitch that does a very good job of selling your business as an interesting investment opportunity to investors. However, to make this work in your favour, it's vital that you understand the key difference between a proposal and a pitch, and when to use each one.
Your proposal is usually a detailed document -- it could be a comprehensive business plan, a financial model, or a product specification. Your pitch, on the other hand, is an appetizer -- a very short summary -- that makes investors hungry to know more. Because you have a limited time to win an investor's time and interest, a good pitch sparks enough curiosity and interest in an investor that makes them want to read or listen to your full proposal.
Inside the Roadmap Program, you will learn how to craft proposals and pitches that are so compelling that investors will want to listen to you, and more importantly, ask you questions. When investors start to ask probing questions about your business, that's usually a very good sign of interest.
No matter how simple or complicated your business is, the formula we'll show you inside the Roadmap Program will give you the power and skill to craft a compelling proposal and pitch for any kind of business.
On top of that, you will have access to templates, scripts, and samples of real-life proposals that have been used to successfully raise funding from investors. And when your pitch is ready, you will have the chance to record it so we can listen to it and give you feedback. It's up to you to practice your pitch as many times as you want until you get it right.
Note: While we will review recorded pitches submitted by every member, only Premium members will have the opportunity to have their investment documentation (business plan, financial model, etc.) personally reviewed by John-Paul so they get feedback that helps to fine-tune their proposals.
Learn How to Avoid Costly Mistakes
There are several different ways things can go wrong as you try to raise funding from investors. And if you don't know how to avoid these traps and mistakes, it could cost you heavily. Some of these mistakes could lead to missed opportunities, while some could lead to damaged relationships, legal action, financial losses, and personal regrets.
Fundraising is a skill, and like any other skill, inexperienced and unprepared people make the biggest and most costly mistakes. That's why the Roadmap Program focuses on the important aspects of raising funding that are most prone to mistakes, such as business valuation, negotiations, contracts and legal matters, and stakeholder management.
And because every entrepreneur's situation is different, the Roadmap Program comes with a private group coaching service that allows you to ask specific questions about issues you're facing on your journey and get relevant answers and feedback that will help you overcome obstacles and potential mistakes.
When it comes to raising capital, many entrepreneurs are too focused on the money and don't appreciate the value and implications of a mistake until they've made it. If you don't want to expose your business to significant risks, or sign a deal that could ruin your personal reputation and finances, you will benefit a lot from the tailored guidance you'll get inside the Roadmap Program.
Learn How to Close Good Deals with Investors
What happens after you send in your proposal to a potential investor? How can you tell if an investor is interested in your proposal, and what can you do to apply the right kind of pressure that will nudge them to make an investment decision that favours you?
In our experience, a lot of good investment deals that should have happened never happen because many entrepreneurs just don't understand the art of closing deals with investors. Remember, most investors are busy people, and if your strategy is to wait, hope, and pray that everything works out in your favour, you're likely going to end up disappointed and frustrated.
From the time you first make contact with a potential investor, there are important signs you need to look out for that will influence how you engage with that investor. If you move too fast, you could scare off the investor. And if you move too slow, you may be considered unserious and unworthy of their investment.
Inside the Roadmap Program, we'll introduce you to an interesting and very effective fundraising strategy that's often ignored by most consultants and training programs. Understanding the art of closing a deal is a unique advantage that separates those entrepreneurs who keeping reaching out to investors but never find a way to make them commit to an investment. And inside the Roadmap Program, you'll understand exactly how you can make this work in your favour.
Get started now!
An Interesting Case Study
She raised more than $250,000 from investors and got several high-profile international exposures.
Anne Rweyora and her business partner, Will Broad, joined the Roadmap program in October 2017 to prepare their young business for investment. Before joining the program, they had previously hired a consultant to develop a comprehensive business plan but "didn't like the results".
Their business, Smart Havens Africa, is a social enterprise that delivers low-cost, ecofriendly, and affordable housing units for vulnerable, and low-to-moderate income people in Uganda, with a focus on women who are least likely to become homeowners in their lifetime.
Since joining the program, their business has made significant progress, and their profiles as innovative entrepreneurs has had a major boost. Will was featured in a national daily in Uganda, and Anne has been featured on several international media, including the BBC World Service and CNN's Innovate Africa.
In 2019, Anne represented Smart Havens Africa at the finals of the prestigious Africa Prize for Engineering Innovation in London, a competitive award sponsored by the UK's Royal Academy of Engineering. They were also selected as a Global Good Fund fellow and a member of the Takeda Young Entrepreneurs.
At the time of this case study, their business had raised more than $250,000 in funding in a combination of grants, debt, equity, and convertible notes.
In 2020, Anne and Will invited John-Paul to sit on the Advisory Board of Smart Havens Africa.
Another Interesting Case Study
He turned around a lot of negative feedback and won a national business plan competition (plus a $10,000 grant).
When Mohamed Qamsa (middle) joined the Roadmap program in 2018, he was struggling to engage potential investors and having a hard time raising seed capital for his business, Safari Meals.
Safari Meals, based in Mogadishu (Somalia), is an online food ordering platform that brings together restaurants and consumers in a way that maximizes both restaurant sales and consumer convenience.
Available via web, mobile app and a telephone hotline, his business targets office workers, students, elders, individuals, or couples who do not have time to prepare food at home and want food that is fast, affordable, and convenient.
Despite his belief in the potential of his business, he would get negative feedback from potential investors regarding his revenue model, lack of traction, a small customer base, and concerns about the competitive landscape of my business.
After joining the Roadmap program, he beat dozens of other businesses to win the first prize in a business competition organized by Innovation Ventures.
It’s not just about the prize money. What's more important is the strong validation, market awareness, media exposure, and potential for follow-on funding that comes with winning the first prize in a major competition.
So, here's an excerpt of the email Mohamed sent to John-Paul (in March 2020) after winning the prize:
I cannot thank you enough for your mentoring over the years, you have been such an integral part of my career as an entrepreneur. I hope to inspire others as you inspired me.
This is Mohamed Qamsa from Somalia, I took your Roadmap coaching program, and that time I was struggling to raise capital, it was an eye-opening and a life-changing experience for me. After I implemented the knowledge and insights that I gained through the program, the miracle has just happened for me.
I was fortunate to participate in a business competition and won the first prize of the competition which comes with a $10,000 seed investment for one of my businesses (Safari Meals).
I learn something new every day from Smallstarter. Thank you for providing such strong content in the entrepreneurship world. I'm also looking forward to be a part of your special program (the Insider membership), to learn and grow more.
You have been an inspiration. As an entrepreneur, your achievements have been remarkable and I'm grateful to have you as my mentor."
Get started now!
Here's What Our Private Forum Looks Like
Our private members’ area is intuitively designed for desktop, tablet, and mobile users.
As a member of the Roadmap Program, you will have access to our private Insiders forum. Inside the community, you can start a thread or conversation, and post questions or contributions in the discussion forum of any topic you’re interested in (sales, startup, raising capital, etc.).
It's also a fantastic opportunity to collaborate and network with other entrepreneurs like you who are trying to raise funding for different types of businesses. Inside the private forum, you can like and comment on other people’s posts, send private messages and chat with any member, and access the course library from inside the private area.
Here’s what the Insiders’ members’ area looks like:
And Here's The Full Course Curriculum...
Once you start your membership in the Roadmap Program, you will have full access to the lessons and courses that will get you started on your journey to raising funding for your business.
All the courses and lessons are designed to be binge-worthy, interactive and fun. And with a vibrant comments section below each lesson, you can ask any questions you want and get the answers you’re looking for.
Here is the full course curriculum that comes with your membership in the Roadmap Program:
StartWhy is this task important? (1:49)
StartWhy do you want to raise capital? (22:49)
StartOptions: what type of capital do you really need? (27:41)
StartSize: How much capital are you looking to raise? (12:06)
StartUse of funds: What will you use it for? (25:36)
StartAction time: Complete the task!
Who is the Roadmap Program really made for?
I want to be very clear about who this program is for. I’m only looking to attract people who will benefit from this program. I don’t want to waste your time or my time solving a problem that’s not covered by this Roadmap program.
1) You're stuck
If you’re at a point in your business where you’re stuck because you need funds to start, grow, or turn around your business, then this program can help you. However, I must explain that not all entrepreneurs who are stuck, are stuck because they need to raise funding. If you’re not yet sure what your business idea is all about, then capital can’t solve that problem for you. If your business is facing certain operational problems, then capital may not be the solution.
2) You're trying to find potential investors
If you don't know how to find potential investors, the Roadmap program can help you. Inside the program, you will learn how to create the profile of the ideal investor for your business. You will also have access to our curated database of investors that typically invest in businesses and projects of different types and stages in emerging markets.
3) You want to start approaching investors
If you want to know the best ways to approach potential investors, the Roadmap can help you. You will learn the effective techniques for approaching and initiating contact with investors so you can make a good first impression that could eventually lead to funding.
4) Investors are turning you down.
If you think your business is a good opportunity but investors keep turning you down, the Roadmap will be great for you. When this happens, it’s usually a communication problem. In the Roadmap, I’ll show you how to address this challenge so investors will want to listen to what you have to say, thereby increasing your chances of convincing them to give you money.
5) You don't have a compelling and convincing proposal
Your proposal could be as short as an e-mail, as visual as a pitch deck, or as detailed as a comprehensive business plan. The Roadmap program will show you how to craft compelling and convincing investment proposals in a wide range of formats that you can use in different scenarios to appeal to the needs of busy investors.
And if you sign up as a Premium member of the Roadmap Program, I shall personally review your investment proposal (including the financials) and give you unbiased feedback that will help you fine-tune the message and impact of your proposal.
So, if you fall into any of these categories, the Roadmap is for you. But if you don’t have any of these challenges, the Roadmap will not only be a waste of your money, it will be a waste of your time and my time. And we both don’t want that.
Who is the Roadmap Program NOT for?
Fortunately, this program is not for everyone. If you belong to any of the 3 categories below, I can guarantee this program will be a total waste of time and money for you.
It’s not for the Tire Kicker
This is the person who just wants to “kind of” check things out. This program requires people who are committed to doing what it takes to raise funding for their business. Success doesn’t just “kind of” happen. You have to be intentional right from the get go.
If the commitment isn’t there, then this is NOT the right program for you and I ask that you please do not sign up.
It’s not for the Money Magician
This is the person who thinks that just by joining this program, they're going to "automatically" raise millions of dollars from investors. Of course, it never works like that in real life. There are no short cuts; it takes commitment to learn and actually apply all you've learned. You have to implement.
There are no guarantees that you will raise funding by joining this program.
Nobody, other than investors themselves, can give you guarantees. And if you're looking for guarantees as a shortcut to funding, I'm sorry I cannot help you. Most entrepreneurs who have successfully raised capital had to work hard for it. Most of them were rejected by several investors before they finally got funding. Again, nobody other than investors themselves can give you guarantees.
However, though I cannot guarantee you will raise capital by joining this program, I can actually guarantee that you will be far better-prepared and much more convincing than most entrepreneurs out there who are looking for funding.
It’s not for the Mr. or Mrs. Know It All
What I’ll be sharing with you inside the Roadmap Program works, and there are LOTS of real world examples and success stories of entrepreneurs like you who have raised funding for their businesses. So, if you’re someone who likes to focus on why something “wouldn’t work”, then this program is not for you either.
Some of the strategies in this program are counter-intuitive to what most people teach - and that’s partly why they work so well. You have to be open to what I’m sharing otherwise it’s going to be a frustrating experience for both of us.
It's time to decide. Choose the plan below that works for you!
Get started now!
Frequently Asked Questions
What are you still waiting for? Choose the plan below that works for you!