As far as new small business strategy is concerned, the future appears to lie firmly within the eco-friendly sphere. According to German-based Roland Berger Strategy Consultants, the global market volume for environmental technologies will exceed 20 billion euro by 2025.
The term “environmental technologies” covers a lot of territory, but it also represents a lot of opportunity. Whether you consider such a strategy sustainable in the long-term, there can be little doubt that this is one diverse and growth-oriented niche for entrepreneurs who have vision and a desire to couple business innovation and environmental responsibility.
The great advantage of launching a green business is the global nature of environmentalism, a phenomenon that’s growing by leaps and bounds, which means that entrepreneurs in this niche are entering a burgeoning market. And there’s always the personal satisfaction angle, making money doing something that contributes to preserving our environment. Yet many such ventures constitute something completely new and represent a certain financial risk.
Growing a green business may require significant financial resources, which means owners are well-advised to investigate different options, including a small business loan, small business startup loan, or a business line of credit. Each option comes with its own unique advantages.
A small business loan is government-guaranteed, which allows lenders to offer loans at low interest rates. With a line of credit, you pay interest only on the amount you borrow from your credit line. There’s also a supportive system of green business organizations that can provide support, direction and advice where financing is concerned. The Clean Economy Network, Eco Tuesday, Green Chamber of Commerce and Green Drinks are just a few examples of an environmentally focused business networking community that can help new entrepreneurs in myriad ways.
Some of the most innovative and appealing new business ideas within the eco-friendly market niche are those that impact the way people live and help them find ways to live healthier and more sustainable. Food sourcing is a major area of concern in many parts of the world and it’s been a hot issue in the U.S. for many years. People, even those who live in small apartments with no space to grow food but on the roof, stand to benefit from a business that supports the set-up and maintenance of rooftop gardens from both a physical framework and garden and seed supply standpoint.
Concerns over non-renewable energy sources have been with us for decades and helped spawn the development of alternatives such as wind and solar power. Statistics show that solar power can supply as much as 70 percent of a family’s heated water needs over the course of a year. Combined with rapid growth in the solar panel business and the likely increase in conventional energy costs, solar power would seem to represent a very attractive business model for an aggressive and forward-thinking entrepreneur.
There’s been steady growth in the gas and electric scooter business in recent years. Oppressive traffic patterns, the cost of gas and car maintenance and heightened awareness of global warming has led many to opt for a cheaper, more sustainable way of getting around. That’s been good news for scooter dealerships, which would seem to offer a promising business model for years to come.
Growing a green business takes vision and a strong sense of innovation, as well as a belief in the urgency of investing in the long-term health of the environment. It’s a great way to think globally and act locally, as the saying goes.