Business Round. With the aim of continuing to provide our readers with useful tools for the development of their business activities, we have dedicated this column to what we think may be the first five steps to settle in the US. Let's see.
First step: Identify a business and acquire or develop it. A franchise allows you to receive the essential management elements that have served to successfully develop the business elsewhere: the brand, operating manuals, initial training and ongoing support. It has the disadvantage that the franchisee cannot introduce innovations and improvements without the authorization of the franchisor; in addition, he must write weekly or fortnightly checks for "royalties" that sometimes swallow half of the profit of the business and, finally, the installation can take several precious months of its useful life.
A new business, on the other hand, requires extensive managerial experience and financial capacity to develop an efficient campaign to penetrate a market as demanding as the North American one. The fact that a product is successful in Venezuela does not imply that it will be successful here as well.
If it is a question of acquiring a running business, on the other hand, the buyer has the opportunity to carry out an in-depth investigation of the details of the activity and thus know what he is buying; Once the business is closed, the buyer will be able to feel the sweet sound of the cash register announcing the beginning of the cash flow in his favor, without wasting time.
Second step: Register a company. When you acquire the business, do not acquire the shares of the selling company. What you must buy are only the assets, whether tangible (machinery, equipment, land, building, vehicles) or intangible ("good will", client portfolio, industrial property rights, client portfolio) and put them all in the name of the new company you found. Acquiring the shares of the selling company could transfer obligations contracted by the previous administrator to the new owner.
Third step: Register trademarks and fancy names. This will allow you to develop the market with the peace of mind that third parties will not appear to claim ownership of your rights.
Fourth step: Get the business visa. Ask the countrymen who have already settled who managed the visa for them. You will be surprised to learn about the successes as well as the "blunders" of some specialists in the field and will evaluate a range of fees that goes from US$3,500 to US$10,000 per visa.
When requesting a fee estimate, make sure you are told not only the basic fees but also expenses for translations, business plan, company registration, and cost of renewals. With the visa stamped in the passport, you will be able to work openly and enroll your children in public school and school transportation.
Fifth step: Rent or purchase a residence. With the current level of interest -which ranges between 3.8 and 5.5%- and terms of up to 30 years, it is a good business to acquire a residence. However, if your capital is tight, rent. Remember that you must give priority to the business that will be your source of maintenance and wealth growth.
And, to conclude this round of well-intentioned advice, here's this thought-provoking quote from an anonymous author: "Be happy with what you have while achieving what you want".
Author: Alfredo González I

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