Putting Together an ATM Business Plan

Author Justin Gilmore

Every good new business requires a well-written business plan, and an ATM business is no exception. Even though automated teller machines essentially provide passive income through surcharge fees, if you invest in one or more machines without a clear strategy for how you’ll leverage them for income, you could still be wasting your investment dollars. Fortunately, putting together an ATM business plan is a relatively simple endeavor that articulates the value of the business opportunity you’re putting together, and it will go a long way toward helping you stay focused on your goals.

Purpose of Your Business Plan

Regardless of the type of business you have, a business plan is generally written with one of two audiences in mind, and possibly both:

  • Lenders and investors. If you plan to raise capital to start your ATM business, banks and potential investors will want to know what your company is about and how you plan to make money.
  • You and your team (if applicable). Your business plan helps to galvanize your strategy in writing so you can refer back to it, remember your objectives and track your progress.

Basic Elements of a Business Plan

Business plans can follow a number of different structures, but most tend to contain the following elements:

  • Executive Summary: A brief description of your company for the sake of possible investors (think of this as your elevator pitch). The Executive Summary typically includes your business name, mission statement, bio, what you’re selling (in this case, ATM services), projected growth, and current financial assets.
  • Company Description: More details about how the business will be structured (e.g., sole proprietorship, partnership, LLC or corporation), as well as information on the services you’re offering and your target market. (For an ATM business, this would include the number of ATM machines you plan to buy and where you plan to place them.)
  • Market Analysis: Why is this business needed? Who will use your ATM machines and why? What ATM locations will you focus on? Here you’ll outline any research you’ve conducted about ATM use in your area, best strategies for placement in areas with ample foot traffic, advantages you offer business owners over your competition, etc.
  • Management Structure: If you plan to work with a leadership team or a team of ATM operators, describe who they are and what they bring to the table. If it’s just you, a brief bio will suffice.
  • Financial Projections: Detailed documentation of your bank accounts’ financial outlook and projected profit from surcharges and loss over the next several years.

Additional Tips for Creating a Good ATM Business Plan

  • Make Conservative Projections. Don’t inflate your numbers to impress investors—they can usually see through it, and you don’t want to make promises you can’t reasonably keep. Keep your numbers realistic and believable.
  • Use Visuals when Possible. A picture (or graph) is worth a thousand words.
  • Be Professional and Concise. This document may be used to bring lenders or investors on board, but mostly it’s a guiding document to help chart a course for your ATM business. Avoid fluff and sales-pitchiness. Be enthusiastic, but real.

Looking to become an ATM owner or start your own ATM business? AtmMachines.com, LLC can help you navigate the ATM industry and implement many details of your ATM business plan, including new ATM machines, ATM placement, management/placement services and much more. Give us a call at 1-866-295-2329 to discuss how we can work together to build your ATM company.