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By David Chew, SBA Credit Analyst, Core Bank
Earlier this month, a group of us from Core Bank had the opportunity to participate in the Caines Arcade Project. This is an event at Christa McAuliffe Elementary School in Lenexa, Kansas where the 5th grade students design, create, and operate their uniquely designed arcade games.
During the project, the kids came and asked us for a loan to fund the building of their game. They made a business plan, thought about projections, came up with step-by-step plans of how they were going to build a machine, and listed the materials with the cost of each item. They were divided into groups of two or three team members, and each team presented and ultimately asked for a loan.

The Kids Created a Business plan:

The business plans were very detailed.
Within the business plan they started with the request. The request broke down what their machine was, how it was going to operate, and the dollar amount needed to build the game with their loan funds. Being the bankers we are, the first question was “what happens if you need additional materials?” The kids immediately fired back, “that’s why we added an additional $5 to the loan to account for if we run out of materials.” BAM!!! Our first concern was shut down… giving us all the more reason to lend money to them!

The Kids Took it a Step Further:

How does their game stand out from the crowd to attract people to play?
They would do things such as situate the game close to the door to ensure their game is the first one that people would see. If they could not get product placement by the door, they would color their game with bright colors to stand out from the other games. (The brown color of card board boxes is boring.)
The loan amounts varied from $50-$100 with a breakout of how Core Bank would be paid back through projections.

Projections:

The kids detailed the two events their games would be on display. The first event would be a school event of which 350 kids would have access to playing their game. The cost of play per game was anywhere from a quarter to a dollar. The kids would estimate that one play would take an average of 30 seconds, and within one hour they could have upwards of 120 plays. At an average price of 50 cents, that would equate to profit of $60 (only for the first event).
The kids estimated an additional 200 people would have access to their game during a Parent’s Night event.
This is less than the actual student body because it’s after school and some students may not be able to make it to the event. This would equate to another $60 in profit.

These Kids Were Impressive:

The kids were so well prepared. They talked about their games with excitement, and had a plan how they were going to make their game, and how it was going to be operated. And they knew their numbers, the materials required and how they were going to repay the bank loan.
After the presentations there was only one answer we could give… APPROVED!!!