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Restaurant business plan

Consider these steps when making your business plan.

free business plan restaurant

How to write a business plan for your restaurant

Restaurant business plans are integral to the success of your business. Your business plan will be the road map from which your restaurant develops, it will help you grow and will guide you through the complexities of owning your own restaurant.

In this article, we offer hands-on tips for restaurant owners on how to write a business plan for your restaurant and why a restaurant business plan is so important. We have included a step-by-step restaurant business plan template which you can download to help you get started. Whether you are a restaurant startup or you already own restaurants and are an established part of the foodservice industry, this guide will be useful for every type of restaurant.

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What you need to include in a restaurant business plan

Business plans should be concise and no more than around two pages long. Consider some steps like your key activities, offerings and resources (scroll down at this page to see the full list).

Define your restaurant idea

Ensuring the contents of your restaurant business plan are short and clear. What is the competitive advantage that helps you stand out from the crowd? Are you a fine dining restaurant, casual service spot, a brasserie?

Financial analysis and financial projections

A restaurant business plan should have estimates on your total start-up costs and the amount of money needed to keep your restaurant functioning. A solid cash flow on a day-to-day basis, is a solid ground. This is sometimes regarded as a break-even analysis. To ensure costs don't outrun sales. You should also have a budget that predicts the first year’s revenues.

Benefits of having a restaurant business plan

Having a clear business plan is very important for you as a restaurateur, your management team and your staff, so you all pull in the same direction.

Consider these steps when making your business plan.

Your Restaurant concept (mission statement) A good place to start with your business plan is to have a mission statement that describes your business, why you exist and your business concept. This should be followed by:

Your Vision What is your vision, where do you want to be in the future? (Aim high).

Your Values What are your core values? Can you describe them?

Your key activities What do you need to continue doing to reach your goals? Write them all down here.

Your offerings What are you offering that makes you an attractive business on the market?

Your key resources List some of your most valuable assets.

Your customer segments Who is your target group, who is your most important customer and who is your dream customer? List those here and think about your overall customer base.

Your sales channels What are your restaurant sales channels?

Your revenue Where and how do you generate your income?

Your costs Where do you spend money to reach your goal?

Your partners Which partners do you have today, and which ones would you like to have in the future?

*Business plan template is inspired by Magnus Helgesson

Ensuring the contents of your restaurant business plan are short and clear, you need to do some preparation work. You should clearly define your restaurant idea and your restaurant concepts, such as the service style, pricing, type of food, menu items and ambience. What is the competitive advantage that helps you stand out from the crowd? Are you a fine dining restaurant, casual service spot, a brasserie?

Consider ways to service customers who cannot or prefer not to dine in, such as a creating a ghost kitchen for prepared meals, take-aways or delivery? Is there are any industry analysis or market research within the restaurant industry for your target market? It’s always good to have as much information as possible when designing a new business plan right down to the basics like company description and target audience.

As you develop your concept, don’t forget to check out the competition. Do some market research on what has already been tried and tested, figure out which of these concepts work best, and why. That way you will be able to build on something that customers like, and are willing to pay for, and turn it into your own. Also, look into demographics to see if that fits your concept and target customers. This information may also define a future marketing strategy for your social media channels and be part of a roadmap to your restaurant marketing.

Your restaurant business plan will have estimates on your total start-up costs and the amount of money needed to keep your restaurant functioning on a day-to-day basis, to have a solid cash flow. This is sometimes regarded as a break-even analysis, to ensure costs don’t outrun sales. You should also have a budget that predicts the first year’s revenues and expenses to know how much you will need to stay in business. This total represents your funding needs and is critical to any small business or startup.

Funding can come from a variety of sources, such as your own savings, joining up with one or more partners, attracting potential investors or traditional funding from a bank. Regardless of your strategy, even if it is your own money, make sure to have sound financial projections at hand.

Many new restaurants fail early on, often due to a lack of planning and a lack of interest in what their guests are saying and not understanding and implementing customer feedback. But that doesn’t mean your restaurant has to be overly complex to prosper. In fact, the more streamlined you can make it, the better your chances to build a successful restaurant. Having a clear business plan is very important for you as a restaurateur, your management team and your staff, so you all pull in the same direction.

After you have filled in your contact information, you will be contacted by one of our knowledgeable experts who can tell you more about our solutions.

Free Restaurant Business Plan Template

Restaurant Business Plan Template

What You'll Get With This Business Plan Template:

Turn your business dreams into reality with this restaurant business plan template.

Whether you’re opening a brand-new restaurant or you’re taking a current concept in a different direction, a restaurant business plan template can help you put your ideas to paper.

But what exactly is a business plan and how do you write a restaurant business plan specifically?

A business plan is an essential document that provides an overview of your new business, its goals, and your plan to achieve those objectives. This includes everything from the kind of food you’re going to serve, the management team you plan to hire, and how you will promote your new business. In other words, a business plan helps you organize your ideas, articulate your business strategy, and secure investor funding.

To help you bring your own business plan to life, we’ve created a free restaurant business plan template. The template is designed to be fully customizable, with room for you to fill out each of the seven major sections. For instance, the executive summary section of this restaurant business plan template details how to craft a restaurant mission statement, how to articulate your proposed concept, and tips for outlining how you’ll execute your business plan. On the other hand, the financial analysis and growth plan section of this hospitality-specific business plan template gives you a list of all the important financial projections you’ll need to include to show that your business is a viable investment opportunity.

Each section of the business plan template for restaurants also includes helpful prompts and instructions to help you determine what to include. This is especially helpful if you’re opening a more specific restaurant concept like a brewery that also offers dine-in.

When you’re finished filling out the restaurant business plan template, you can simply delete the instructional text and save the document. The restaurant business plan template is designed for Word and Pages, so you can save and access the document in either program. You can even print the document to share your restaurant business plan with your team and any prospective investors.

Success! Click below to access the download.

We’ve also sent you a confirmation email with a personal download link so you can access the content at any time.

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How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan

Set your restaurant up for long-term success.

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Many people dream of opening a restaurant, seeing it as an opportunity to turn a love for entertaining or cooking into a business. Unfortunately for many restaurateurs, the reality of running a restaurant is not what they expected. Long hours, low pay, and a lot of stress cause many entrepreneurs to close up shop after a few short years.

One reason for the high failure rate in this industry is that restaurant owners fail to treat their restaurant as a business from the very beginning. They have no plan to deal with problems and unexpected expenses, and they don't understand the true costs associated with opening a restaurant.

One way to prevent these types of problems is to develop a well-written business plan. By writing a restaurant business plan, you show investors or lenders you have a clear contingency plan for handling any problems that arise.

What a Plan Can Do for You

A restaurant business plan needs to be structured like most business plans, but the details need to address your specific vision for a restaurant and its place in your local market. Start with the same general components of a standard business plan, then gear it specifically to the restaurant industry and your plans of succeeding in that industry.

Executive Summary

This overview needs to introduce your entire business plan with a couple of key broad strokes: What niche will your restaurant fill in the local dining market, and what role will you specifically play?

Make it clear to the reader (a potential investor) what kind of restaurant you will be. From fast-casual and sports bars to fine dining or ethnic cuisine, there are all kinds of restaurants. Let the investor know how you'll fit into the market, including the name of your restaurant and its location.

Be clear about your role in the business as well. Restaurants are multilayered operations. Menus must be built, food must be cooked, finances must be managed, customers must be served, and marketing efforts need to expand your clientele. One person trying to do all that would be overwhelmed, so include your partners in your executive summary. If you haven't found the perfect partners yet, explain the roles that you intend to eventually delegate to partners. If you're an experienced chef with a plan for a fine dining restaurant, for example, then make it clear to readers that your primary role will be in the kitchen and you'll hire experienced professionals to handle other key roles.

Company Description

This business analysis offers a first look at all your key business details. Where will you be located? What's your mission? Who are your target customers? What kinds of dishes will make up your menu? What sets your restaurant apart from other options in the area? Will the population base support another establishment like yours?

You'll also want to include basic details like your company's legal name, business structure, ownership, and management team. Keep everything high-level here, and save the deep details for later in your plan.

Market Analysis

This is often referred to as a marketing strategy, and there are three key components. Know how to address the specifics of your plan within each one.

Business Operations

Also known as the products or services section, this is where you tell investors about your hours and how many employees you plan to hire. It's also where you explain the benefits of your establishment for customers, such as its convenient downtown location or its proximity to the local interstate exit.

This is also a good place to mention any close ties you have to local restaurant vendors, such as food supply companies or local farms, that will give you a competitive edge. For example, a liquor license is expensive and can be difficult to obtain in some markets. Here, you can explain to investors that you've hired a consultant who specializes in negotiating and purchasing liquor licenses to handle that aspect of your business.

Management and Ownership

Who is going to helm the ship? Who will cover the aspects of the business you can't? Beyond ownership, explain your management hierarchy, as well. For example, will managers for specific areas—dining room, bar, business, etc.—report to a general manager who then reports to you? Or, will everyone report to you equally? The structure you choose is less important than having one that works for you. You also want to ensure that the function of the structure is easy to explain to your investors or lenders.

Financial Analysis

Here, you want to list the projected growth of your new restaurant. You should include a general start-up budget, as well as a profit and loss statement that projects how much are you going to spend versus how much you are going to make.

Lenders and investors want to see that they are going to get a return on their investment, so give them a picture—and be realistic—of how that's going to happen. Put the work in to accurately project your labor and food costs, along with other operational costs, and compare those against the expected sales growth of your restaurant. A detailed financial plan will provide a road map for evaluating how your business is doing each year.

Outside Help

Many people opening a restaurant are not experienced business professionals, so it's a good idea to seek out a business partner with requisite experience. If you can't find a partner, consider hiring a consulting firm that specializes in helping new restaurants get their operations off the ground. At a minimum, enlisting a professional who knows how to write a business plan will ensure you've got a good chance of enduring those first tumultuous years.

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Home » Business ideas » Hospitality, Travel & Tourism » Restaurant Business

How to Write a Restaurant Business Plan [Sample Template]

Do you want to start a restaurant and you need to write a business plan? If YES, here is a sample restaurant business plan template & FREE feasibility report. Okay, so we have considered all the requirements for starting a restaurant business . We also took it further by analyzing and drafting a sample restaurant marketing plan template backed up by actionable guerrilla marketing ideas for restaurant businesses.

Starting a food business may sound easy, but the truth is that if you are looking to start a restaurant, such that you do not want to die a quick death, then you have got to do the needful to make sure that it does stand the test of time. There is quite a lot that is needed to be done in order to see that your restaurant business does take flight within the period that you have projected it to be.

Here is a guide on how to write your own business plan by fixing in the appropriate details of your business after you have gone through the sample restaurant business plan below;

A Sample Restaurant Business Plan Template

1. industry overview.

Whether you are a foodie or not, truth is that as humans food is one essential thing that just must not be toiled with. It is no wonder that plenty die of starvation where there is nothing to eat to replenish lost strength. As such, the restaurant business all over the globe is one business that generates huge income annually and can comfortably stand the test of time if well managed.

Any business person who gets involved in the food industry is sure to get good returns on investment if the business is well positioned. One good thing about the restaurant business is that an owner has the sole right to determine the price they want to sell their menu irrespective of what others around them might – especially if they are good with the delicacies they whip up.

There is no contesting the fact that food is one of the basic needs of people. It is for that reason that a myriad of people do all it takes to eat when they are hungry and Restaurants are such places that is designed to address such needs. There are various kinds of restaurants all over the world. Here are a few examples. We have:

These cafes are designed to meet various needs of different tribes, creeds and races. In most cases, it is the community where the restaurant is to be situated that certainly determines the style of restaurant service to be offered. For example; if one decides to start a restaurant business around a construction site; choosing an intercontinental style of restaurant or a family style restaurant might just be the best option.

Conversely, some might want to start a local restaurant, casual dining restaurant or even a fast food style restaurant irrespective of where they are located. However, if you choose to start a restaurant in a city that hosts thousands of international tourists and migrants, then starting an intercontinental restaurant will be your best options.

Over and above, it pays an individual to acquire culinary skills, as well as undertake a thorough and exhaustive feasibility studies before choosing the style of restaurant to start, the location to set up the business and the pricing system to adopt for the business.

2. Executive Summary

MunaChimso® Intercontinental restaurant is a 150 seat family style restaurant that is solely owned by Betty O’chucks and family. The restaurant is to be located in the heart of Houston Texas and it is designed in such way to make people of different nationality and cultures feel at home, as well as connect with their heritage and culture despite being thousands of kilo meters away from their home countries.

The restaurant will be a place where over a hundred intercontinental delicacies will be available per time prepared by some of the finest chefs in Texas. We choose to start the first outlet of our intercontinental restaurant in Houston, Texas because of the large percentage of migrants from Africa, Mexico and some part of Asia.

The fact that we have a bias for the African community makes Texas the most suitable destination to kick start our business project. As a result, we know that we just couldn’t go wrong if we started this business from here by all means. MunaChimso® Intercontinental restaurant is set to redefine the way cafeteria businesses operate in Texas.

Beyond opening our doors to customers to come in and have their meals in a cozy environment with tons of music that will remind them of their culture and heritage, we will also offer food delivery services to the chunk of our clients who place orders for any of our intercontinental meals; and this is irrespective of the part of Texas where they are resident.

We shall as well run a culinary school and also offer outdoor catering services base on demands. This is because we are aware of the fact that there are loads of Africans in this city who might be too overwhelmed with making out a living, so that they aren’t chanced to whip up some party meals when the need arises.

Our plan is to position the business to become the leading brand in restaurant business in Texas, and also to be amongst the top 20 restaurants in the united states of America within the first 10 years of operations.

This might look too tall a dream but we are optimistic that this will surely come to pass because we have done our research and feasibility studies and we are enthusiastic and confident that Texas is the right place to launch our intercontinental business before spreading to other parts of America.

Currently, we have been able to secure a location to set-up the first outlet of the restaurant in Texas and we are still working towards securing the necessary documentation and permits before swinging into full action to get the place ready for business.

Our ultimate goal is not to build a successful single unit, first class, intercontinental restaurant in the heart of Huston, Texas, but to open a minimum of one outlet of our intercontinental restaurant in major cities all across the United States.

We have perfected plans to attract traffic on a daily basis to our restaurant- people from various cultures, race and country et al. Much more than creating an ambiance where people can feel relaxed to enjoy our delicacies, we have also put plans in place that will ensure adequate security in and around our facility.

It is for that reason that we will install CCTV cameras at strategic places and our security personnel will be thoroughly trained to handle security issues in a proactive manner. Therefore, our clients can be rest assured of their safety when they visit our intercontinental restaurant. Without mincing words, security is of top priority to us because we intend attracting celebrities and the crème de la crème in the society, in every of our outlets all over the country.

The set date for opening our doors for business is February 1 st , 2016 and we are indeed working hard to make that date a reality. So far, we have been able to raise60 percent of the startup capital required and we are in the process of securing the last 40 percent.

The total budget for setting up our intercontinental restaurant is about $200,000 and we can categorically say that we already have about $120,000. In addition, we are at the verge of receiving the last trench of $80,000 loan from our bank.

3. Our Products and Services

The fact that we are starting an intercontinental restaurant means that we must meet the needs of our clients especially migrants who truly want to reconnect via food with their culture and heritage. We know that giving those who come to our restaurant a home away from home experience would go a long way in breeding repeat customers. In view of that, we have specifically listed at least 100 different intercontinental meals in our menu list. Here they are:

4. Our Mission and Vision Statement

Our Business Structure

These are the following roles and positions that will be duly occupied before opening our business doors to the public. They include:

Security Officers

5. Job Roles and Responsibilities

Chief Executive Officer – CEO-:

Restaurant Manager-:

Chief Chef-:

Sales and Marketing Officer-:

Waiters / Waitress

Accountant / Cashier-:

Dispatch Rider-:

6. SWOT Analysis

When it comes to starting a new business, one of the areas that will help entrepreneurs position their business in such a way that the trade will break even within the shortest time frame, is to critically conduct SWOT analysis before proceeding to launch the business.

With the help of competent business consultants, we have been able to carry out our own SWOT Analysis and here is what it looks like;

Our strength is anchored on our ability to serve our customers through the options of having them either visit our restaurant to have their breakfast, lunch or dinner or by delivering their orders straight to their houses, offices, or any location of their choice. The fact that we offer outdoor catering services and also culinary training counts to our advantage in the restaurant industry in the United States of America.

So far, we have been able to identify a few weakness on our part. The fact that we might possibly launch out big with a bang and start competing with major restaurant brand in the United States of America may likely count to our disadvantage, but we are perfecting plans on our own part to leverage on our moderate resources ( finance and workforce ) to maximize profits.

Beyond every reasonable doubt, the opportunities within our disposal are unlimited. Restaurant business in Texas and even in the whole of the United States of America is indeed a profitable business venture. For instance; our CEO is an active member of the African community in North Africa and she is one of the highly recognized women leaders in Texas.

Another opportunity that we stand to explore is the point that our restaurant is located in a highbrow area in Huston Texas; a place with huge population of migrants from African descent Lastly, the fact that we offer outdoor catering services and culinary training gives us the privilege to market our intercontinental restaurant to our target market.

The threat that is likely going to confront us is the fact that we are competing with already established restaurants that serve intercontinental meals, and also there are other entrepreneurs who are likely going to launch similar business within the location of our business. Of course, they will compete with us in winning over the available market.

Another threat that we are likely going to face is the area of government policies. This is especially when it comes to the importation of our raw ingredients that can’t be found / cultivated in the United States from Africa, Asia and South America. We therefore fear that if the government of the United States of America places embargo on importation of our major food ingredients, it would definitely affect our business.


The market trend when it comes to intercontinental restaurant / delicacies is that; most of the clients that patronize these restaurants are not necessarily from the country where these meals originate from. As such, they just want to have a feel of the meal perhaps out of curiosity.

For example; people that patronize Chinese restaurants are not necessarily Chinese folks. People from different country and culture just love Chinese meals and they are willing to pay a premium when compared to the prices of what normal menus – local meal goes for.

In essence, when you run an intercontinental restaurant, your target market should not be restricted to only migrants from the regions where the meals originates from, but everyone who is willing to explore when it comes to foods. With good publicity, the meal of a foreign country can become popular in the US just like Chinese delicacies, Mexican delicacies and what have you. Part of the marketing and sales strategies that we will adopt includes:

8. Our Target Market

We are quite aware that the target market for restaurant cum food business cuts across people of all walks of life, since everybody needs food to survive and we are prepared to meet the needs of as much people as we can, within the various locations our intercontinental restaurant will be located. In order to stay focused on the kind of business brand we intend building, we have clearly defined certain groups of people as our main target. They are:

Our Competitive Advantage

From our research and feasibility studies, we were able to discover loads of restaurants with a couple of them serving intercontinental delicacies. As a matter of fact, most of them have stayed long enough (10 years and above) in the business and they have mastered the market. The sole fact that they have stayed this long means that they enjoy robust patronage.

Since we are aware of this obvious detail, we have decided to adopt a unique strategy that will help us gain our own market share, stay afloat in the industry and steadily walk our way to the top of restaurant business in Texas and in the United States of America.

And part of the strategy that will give MunaChimso® Intercontinental Restaurant competitive advantage in the market place is; the point that we will not only serve various intercontinental delicacies in a cozy environment that will make our customers connect with their culture and heritage, we will offer home delivery services, we will offer culinary training and we will also offer outdoor catering services, as demanded by our clients.


Generating enough income to take care of overhead and operational cost might not come so easy for a new business. As a matter of fact, most new businesses budget for money to pay employees and run the business for as long as 6 months or so, because they know that they might likely not make the money they require to effectively run the business within such a time frame.

This is because they conversant of the teething stage which nearly all businesses face upon inception. As a result of our findings, we have adopted a strategy that will guarantee that we generate adequate income from different sources.

Of course, our business goal is to run a first class intercontinental restaurant, but every other means of generating fund for the business is in line with providing delicacies to our highly esteemed customers which is our business mission. Here are the sources we have put in place to generate resources for MunaChimso® Intercontinental Restaurant;

10. Sales Forecast

It is important to state that our sales forecast is based on the data gathered during our feasibility studies and also assumptions. This is for sales projections based on what we saw.

Sales of Drinks, Wine, Beverages and Water et al-:

N.B-: The possibility of the figure to increase by 25 percent or more cannot be ruled out. Research shows that people who consume alcohol are generally not satisfied with just one bottle, especially when they have the financial resources to purchase a whole lot more.

We are quite aware that the market for intercontinental meals is on the increase, and we are also aware that loads of restaurants in the United States of America deal in intercontinental delicacies. In view of that, we have been able to work out plans that will help us win a large percentage of our targeted market over.

It is also important to state that we will continue to change or improve our marketing and sales strategy, until we are able to get a hang of the kind of result we are looking for. In essence, our sales and marketing strategy just like every one of our business strategies will remain flexible. In nut a shell, we will explore the following marketing and sales strategies to promote our intercontinental restaurant business:

11. Publicity and Advertising Strategy

Restaurant business just like any other business in the food industry requires media hype to get people to buy into the brand. We are quite aware of this and we have decided to make provisions for serious promotion of our brand. Here are the platforms we intend making use of to promote and advertise our business;

12. Our Pricing Strategy

Good foods definitely do not come cheap, but we are sure going to work towards fixing prices that will be pocket friendly. Our various intercontinental delicacies might not come cheap when compared to local meals or everyday meals in the United States of America, but we will try as much as lies within our power to strike a balance between making profits and satisfying our highly esteem customers.

Our strategy for fixing prices will be solely driven by what is obtainable in the industry, alongside sampling the opinions of our targeted market on the amount they will be willing to pay for various intercontinental meals.

Our payment policy is all inclusive because we are quite aware that different people prefer different payment options as it suits them. Here are the payment options that will be available in every of our outlets;

In view of the above, we have chosen banking platforms that will help us achieve our plans without any itches.

13. Startup Expenditure (Budget)

Going by the report from our research and feasibility studies, we will need an average $200,000 to set up a moderate intercontinental hotel in Huston, Texas. From our projections, we are likely going to start making profits after the first 3 years of setting up the business and we have put plans in place to take care of the overhead and operational cost.

Generating Funding / Startup Capital for our Restaurant

We don’t have the intention of bringing business partners outside the family to invest in the business, at least for the first 5 years of running the business that is why we have restricted raising our startup capital to;

N.B-: We have been able to generate about $120,000 and we are at the final stages of obtaining a loan of $80,000 from our bank. All the papers and document has been signed and submitted, the loan has been approved and any moment from the now our account will be credited.

14. Sustainability and Expansion Strategy

The bigger picture of MunaChimso® Intercontinental Restaurant is to grow the business beyond Huston, Texas to other major cities in the United States of America. As such, we intend spending the first 5 years of the business in building and communicating our brand to our targeted market.

We have plans to sell our franchise to interested entrepreneurs who have what it takes to become our ambassadors. We know that once our brand has been accepted by the general public, it will be easier for us to successfully sell our franchise to interested entrepreneurs who intend leveraging on our brand to start their own business.

In addition, we will ensure that we invest in regular training and development of our work force. We will not stop at exploring various intercontinental meals from all parts of the world.

Check List / Milestone

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  1. Business plan restaurant

    We offer tips on how to write a business plan for your restaurant and why a restaurant business plan is so important

  2. Restaurant Business Plan Template [Free Download]

    Learn how to write a restaurant business plan with this free restaurant business plan template sample. Whether you're opening a brand-new restaurant or you're taking a current concept in a different direction

  3. Restaurant Business Plan

    6 Restaurant Business Plan free download. Download free printable Restaurant Business Plan samples in PDF, Word and Excel formats

  4. Restaurant Business Plan

    This Restaurant Business Plan can serve as a starting point for your new business, or as you grow an existing enterprise. Free to download and print

  5. Restaurant Business Plan

    How to create a Restaurant Business Plan? An easy way to start completing your plan is to download this example Restaurant Business Plan template now!

  6. Restaurant Business Plan [Sample Template for 2022]

    Do you want to start a restaurant and you need to write a business plan? If YES, here is a sample restaurant business plan template & feasibility report