Course Syllabus

FIN 475: Financing New Ventures

Note: This course code has changed from B 475 to FIN 475. You may occasionally see references to the old course code or title.


This class focuses on one of the most compelling issues for new/small/growing/private companies: how to raise capital.

This course is a part of the Business Management Integrated Finance Emphasis program and serves as an overview of all the options available to successfully finance new ventures. Financing alternatives are explored, including debt financing (from venture banks, commercial banks, and SBICs) and equity financing (from angels, private placements, venture capitalists, and public equity markets).


  1. Identifying great business opportunities (investors are most willing to put money into great businesses—so what makes a business great?)
  2. Sequencing of funding rounds
  3. Funding sources (self, crowd, angel, venture capital, debt, government, grants)
  4. Valuation
  5. Exit (harvest: merger, acquisition, IPO)


  • Exhibit understanding of basic concepts of opportunity analysis by performing quality analyses.
  • Produce effective, working valuation models based on industry-standard practices.
  • Analyze major sources of new venture funding and produce side-by-side comparisons showing the context and availability of each source.
  • Demonstrate an in-depth understanding of key concepts and vocabulary relating to new venture funding via a series of department standard assessments.
  • Write and present a comprehensive investor-focused business plan that will be considered worthy of funding after undergoing a sophisticated venture capital review.


48 credits completed.

Required Materials

  • All the textbooks are free.
    • Business Plans that Work: A Guide for Small Business. New York: McGraw-Hill Professional, 2011. Zacharakis, A., Spinelli, S. J., & Timmons, J. A. (2011). 978-0-07-175257-2
    • Raising Capital: Get the Money You Need to Grow Your Business. New York: AMACOM. Sherman, A. J. (2005). 978-0-81-441704-1 
  • Excel is required. Microsoft Office is free to BYU-Idaho students through the bookstore. 
  • Microphone and webcam

Proctored Exams and Assessments

This course will use an online proctoring software called Proctorio. This makes it possible for students to take assessments and exams without a human proctor present. Proctored exams can be accessed like any other exam, once the software has been installed. Exams will be recorded by Proctorio and reviewed by the BYUI Testing Center. Any questionable exams will be forwarded to the instructor for further review.

For step-by-step instructions on Proctorio installation, please refer to this help guide article.

Learning Model Architecture

Each week, you will prepare by learning what is happening in business finance through current news items. You will learn how each type of financing works through readings and videos.

You will teach one another through discussions and group projects that help you share what you have learned and gain from each other's experiences.

Your opportunity to ponder and prove is written into the activities each week as weekly activities stemming from the focus of the lesson each week.


Due Midweek

Each week, you will have a video or materials introducing that week's topics. You will have readings from the class materials, videos, and outside readings about the topic that week. 

Due End of the Week

There will then be an activity to apply or expand upon what you have learned. These activities take time and are often group work, so you need to start them before the due date.


You will have one group that you work with throughout the class. You have activities that require working to create assignments together and giving each other feedback on individual assignments and some discussions. Read the instructions carefully each week for the assignment requirements.

Group accountability reports will be completed periodically throughout the course. Students who do not contribute to (or only minimally participate in) group projects will receive a lower grade than group members who do contribute.

Grading Policies

Follow the assignment instructions and rubrics attached to the assignments. The rubrics provide detailed expectations for each assignment.


Category Name Total Points


-W01 Quiz: Syllabus
-W02 Study: Definition of Opportunity
-W02 Study: Screening Opportunities
-W03 Prepare: Business Plan 1–3
-W04 Study: Funding Life Cycles
-W05 Study: Self-Funding and Crowdfunding
-Midcourse Evaluation 
-W06 Study: Private Placement (Angel Investors)  
-W06 Prepare: Business Plan 4–7
-W07 Study: Venture Capital
-W08 Study: Deals/Terms VC 
-W09 Study: Debt Funding/Grants/Public Assistance
-W09 Prepare: Business Plan 8–10
--W10 Exam: Funding Sources
--W11 Study: Valuation VC Method
-W11 Study: Pre/Post Money Valuation
-W12 Study: DCF
-W12 Study: Multiplier Method 
-W13 Study: Exits, Mergers, Acquisitions, and IPOs 
-W14 Final Exam

319 (42%)

Group Activities

-Group Project Peer Rating

Individual Projects

-Generate 20 ideas 
-Create a screening tool 
-Screen your ideas 
-Introduction discussions 
-Instructor article discussion
-Identifying funding stages 
-Self-funding/crowdfunding activity 
-Interview an Angel Investor 
-VC industry profile 
-VC firm profile 
-VC-backed company profiles 
-Loans and grant programs 
-IPO summary

191 (25%)
Business Plan (Group Projects)

Team Roles/Tasks Events Business Plan 
-Sections 1–3 Idea Template 
-Sections 1–3 Outline 
-Sections 1–3 Final Version 
-Sections 4–7 Group Preparation 
-Sections 4–7 Idea Template 
-Sections 4–7 Outline 
-Sections 4–7 Final Version 
-Sections 8–10 Group Preparation 
-Sections 8–10 Idea Template 
-Sections 8–10 Outline 
-Sections 8–10 Final Version 
-Business Plan Executive Summary  -Business Plan final completed document and accompanying PPT slides 
-Business Plan presentation

243 (32%)
Total Points: 753 (100%)

Late Work Policy

No late work is accepted in this class, so it is imperative that you watch your class calendar and keep track of your due dates.


The instructor reserves the right to change any part of this syllabus at any time during the semester in order to adapt to changing course needs. You will be notified prior to any changes that may take place.

University Policies

Students with Disabilities

Brigham Young University-Idaho is committed to providing a working and learning atmosphere that accommodates qualified persons with disabilities. If you have a disability and require accommodations, please contact the Disability Services Office at (208) 496-9210 or visit their website and follow the Steps for Receiving Accommodations. Reasonable academic accommodations are reviewed for all students who have qualified documented disabilities. Services are coordinated with students and instructors by the Disability Services Office.

This course may require synchronous meetings. If you are currently registered with the Disability Services Office and need an interpreter or transcriber for these meetings, please contact the deaf and hard of hearing coordinator at (208) 496-9219.

Other University Policies

Student Honor and Other Policies

Please read through the document called University Policies. It gives important information about the following topics:

  • Student Honor
    • Academic Honesty
    • Student Conduct
      • Sexual Harassment
  • Student with Disabilities
  • Complaints and Grievances
  • Copyright Notice

Go to the Student Resources module to review further resources and information.

Support & Help

If you need assistance, visit the “Help” tab located on the left hand side of your screen to contact the appropriate support center. 

Course Summary:

Date Details Due