Retired entrepreneur launches innovative business planning tool

Retired entrepreneur launches innovative business planning tool

Retired entrepreneur Joe Jonkler has recently launched Figurewizard, an innovative and affordable online forecasting and budgeting tool designed for SMEs, start-ups and their advisors.

The quick and easy-to-use website is designed to help start-ups and SMEs understand their forecasts and budgets for a fraction of the cost of other similar providers.

All a user has to do is to enter their predicted figures for sales, profit margin, overheads, investments, and financing for one, two or three years.

Figurewizard will then produce thirteen different business forecasts covering profits, balance sheets, cash flows, finance facilities, analysis and ratios for one, two or three years plus three important calculators.

The tool is the brainchild of retired entrepreneur, Joe Jonkler, who conceived of and designed it himself following a successful entrepreneurial career.

After finishing his A-levels at Mitcham Grammar, Joe went to City University where he studied accountancy for two years, before starting his first business selling Dymo tape to commercial and industrial users.

Jo explained: “After six months I sold my share of the business to my partner’s younger brother to go my own way to start my next company, Inscribe ltd.

“That grew from working from my bedroom in my parent’s flat to become a national supplier of art, craft, toy and hobby products which I sourced from all over the world.

“Our distribution was direct to the retail trade, and from an initial investment of £200, Inscribe grew to sales of over £12 million with profits to match and a direct workforce of close to a hundred.”

The idea for Figurewizard came as Joe was searching the internet for an online calculator and planner to help plan and budget Inscribe’s profits and cash flow going forward.

He said: “This was because like many businesses Inscribe’s trading was seasonal with back-to-school and Christmas making the last five months of the year the peak trading period.

“That meant committing to merchandise in the low-profit, low-cashflow first half of the year in order to meet high demand in the second. Buying by letter of credit exacerbated the problem.

Planning accurately to adequately underwrite all of this was important and Joe realised that a simple yet comprehensive online forecaster and planner for liquidity, cash flow and profits was the answer.

Once he reached retirement, Joe decided he would try to produce something that could work for start-ups, small and medium-sized companies, and their advisors.

After three long years, many false starts, and many more functions and algorithms later, FigureWizard was born.

What sets Figurewizard apart from other online forecasting tools is its ease-of-use for entrepreneurs and small businesses.

“There are two other providers, but these are complex and specifically designed for use by accountants,” said Joe. “They are also extremely expensive, whereas Figurewizard costs just £20 a year.

“Despite this, and despite its ease of use, FigureWizard produces pretty much everything the specialist sites do.

However, when it comes to planning, Joe cannot stress enough the importance of his websites calculators, especially the What-If calculator, which can highlight before and after changes.

“With single clicks, margins, overheads, year-end stocks, fixed assets and financing can be increased or decreased, updating profits, liquidity, the bank, undrawn facilities and the supporting charts in real time.

“All of the forecasts and calculators are shown on the site as interactive working examples. Visitors can make their own changes to assess for themselves how Figurewizard can work for their business.”

“Subscribers to FigureWizard can save up to 100 full sets of forecasts which can be retrieved and updated at any time for £20 a year, instead of hundreds of pounds a time.”