What is a Bankable Proposal?
Several times, I have been asked about the meaning of a bankable proposal.
Just recently, a student from the University of Abuja called to clarify some issues on how to write a bankable proposal. I guess this guy had to do a project on bankable proposal. He called twice and I explained to him what a bankable proposal is. I knew he was not satisfied from his response and I was not surprised he didn’t call back as promised. His problem was that he could not understand while a bankable proposal may not have anything to do with the banks.
I do not blame him as he is not alone. Most people believe that bankable proposals are proposals you can deposit in the bank.
The first thing you have to understand is that the word bankable is used in its English meaning. It is not used as a business word. In other words it is not used as a business word as you have in banks where you deposit money or withdraw money. You may write a bankable proposal which may never see the inside of a bank.
Let us see the dictionary meaning of bankable.
As Adjective. 1. Likely to bring in money. Likely to become financially profitable. A bankable movie star.
2. Acceptable to a bank. Readily and legally acceptable to a bank.
The second meaning is what most people think about when they hear about bankable proposal. What you will ask is what kind of proposal will then be acceptable to a bank. The answer is only one proposal and that Is a proposal that will be financially profitable.
So we come to the first meaning and which is the context that the phrase bankable proposal is used. That is, a proposal that is likely to bring money. If it is not likely to bring profit then it is not bankable. You cannot bank on it. You cannot invest in it. You cannot support it with your resources.
Notice that the first meaning is saying something about a bankable movie star. Definitely, you are not going to lock a movie star in the vault of a bank because he is bankable. What that means is that if you invest in a movie with the star as the lead actor you will make money.
This is another meaning from Business dictionary.
Project or proposal that has sufficient collateral, future cashflow, and highprobability of success, to be acceptable to institutional lenders for financing.
They are saying the same thing. For a proposal to be bankable, it must be profitable.
Recently, Nairaland ran a thread on bankable actresses in Nigeria. You are surely not going to burn them in First Bank because they are bankable. They are simply the top money spinners in the movie industry.
A bankable proposal may not see the inside of a bank. It may just end on the table of your principal. I have written bankable proposals that didn’t get to the bank. Recently I wrote one for a client on Cement. It was meant for a wealthy person to sponsor. The principal needs to know that he is not backing a wrong horse. Is the business profitable is the question he needs yes as an answer.
If for example, you want Femi Otedola Or Alhaji Dangote to sponsor a special secondary school in Your local government. You must be able to convince him that the school will be profitable. Business men are in business to make money. The only way you can convince him is to write a proposal that is bankable.
And do not be intimidated. It is dead easy to write a bankable proposal. You can see an example of a simple one here.
When next you are asked , what is a bankable proposal. Tell them it is a proposal that will bring in profit. A proposal likely to become financially profitable.
I hope this has been helpful.