Alaska Small Business Development Center

Alaska SBDC: Making ProfitCents Industry Data and Analysis Work for You

January 11, 2024

Are you ready to take your business to the next level? As an entrepreneur, it’s essential to clearly understand your financial position and industry trends to make informed decisions for your business’s growth. That’s where the powerful combination of ProfitCents and an Alaska SBDC advisor comes in.

ProfitCents is an advanced financial analysis program available free of charge to all eligible clients by the Alaska Small Business Development Center. This comprehensive tool is used by business advisors, accountants, and major financial institutions nationwide. With ProfitCents, you have access to a complete financial analysis of your business and benchmarking data from over 1,400 industries, with dozens of financial ratios for comparison and tracking.

When it comes to growing your business, improving cash flow, or evaluating investment opportunities, it’s crucial to know where you stand financially. ProfitCents allows us to do just that. For startups, ProfitCents provides industry data with useful guidance, such as benchmarks for advertising, rent, and payroll. With at least two years of your business’s historical financial data, we can determine your standing compared to benchmarks from your industry and create a comprehensive projection model tailored to your business’s specific needs.

But that’s not all ProfitCents offers. It also provides an in-depth narrative report, putting your business’s financial ratios into plain English and deciphering underlying conditions. It’s like taking your business to the doctor and getting blood work done, except instead of checking cholesterol and glucose, it’s determining if things like inventory turnover or sales per square foot are in the healthy range for your industry. There is also a projection tool that helps determine how much debt your business can support for a loan to buy your location or grow into a new one.

These reports are not available to the public without a subscription, but as an Alaska SBDC client, you can receive them for free. 

Here’s a glimpse of what ProfitCents can offer you (with example reports):

  • Industry Data Report: A simple financial benchmarks report that provides real-time industry data, identifies industry trends, and features key performance indicators specific to each industry. Financial statements are not required to obtain this report, which is useful when planning a new business.
  • Narrative Report: A comprehensive report that takes 2-5 years of your business’s financials and benchmarks them with several dozen financial ratios. This report provides a written narrative that explains your business’s performance, based on data entered, and identifies any issues that may not be apparent yet. It’s also available in Spanish. (link to example report)
  • Projections Report: A financial projection tool in Excel incorporating your business’s financials with assumptions going forward, such as purchasing your leased location or growing into a new facility. There is a loan analysis feature that helps analyze how much debt the business can support, as well as a company valuation tool to help buyers and sellers reach an agreement.  (link to example report)

ProfitCents is a fee-based service, but the Alaska SBDC has partnered with ProfitCents to provide these valuable reports to our clients at no cost. Take advantage of this opportunity and ask your local Alaska SBDC advisor how to get your hands on a free ProfitCents report for your industry.

Don’t let uncertainty hold you back from achieving your business goals. With ProfitCents and the support of your Alaska SBDC advisor, you’ll have the financial insights and guidance you need to make informed decisions and thrive in today’s competitive market. Take the first step towards a successful future and discover the power of ProfitCents today.

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