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Assignment 2: Business simulation – Instructions

Instructions for assignment 2 (Business Simulation)


This assignment is comprised of a7 –part Business Simulation. The Assignment will closely follow the course of the subject, the various part of the assignment closely linked to the various topic that we will cover in the subject.

You will be given data relating to a fictitious business. Each student will receive data relating to a different business for their assignment. You will prepare financial reports and make decisions and recommendations relating to the establishment and ongoing management of this business. You will be acting as a consultant to the fictitious bussiness, rather then the actual business owner. You will receive information from the business and you will be expected to provide reports, make recommendations and provide advice to the business.

A general description of the required for the assignment will be made available in week 3, but the data you need to complete each part, and the specific instructions, for each will be available in 24 hours after the deadline for the previous part. This means that, if you wish, you can plan ahead in terms of how you will acquire the skills necessary to tackle each part, but you will need to wait until data and specific are made available for each part before you can analyse the data, carry out the necessary calculations, prepare reports, make recommendations and provide advice. There will be *window* of 1 or 2 weeks (and in one case, three weeks) between the release of the data and the submission deadline for each part.

You will submit the first 6 of the 7 parts of the assignment on a regular basis (every 1,2 or 3 weeks as the case may be) throughout the semester. You will be marked on these submissions and you will be given feedback on your submissions. These 6 parts are to be including (along with part 7) in your final submissions and you can make changes to those first 6 parts, based on the feedback provide, for inclusion in your final submission. You are not expected to modify the parts to match the specific decisions that the client has subsequently made. The final report should contain all of your recommendations, and explain why you have made those recommendations, not withstanding anything the client has subsequently decided to do.

Take careful note of this. Do not just submit part 7 on its own at the end of the semester. You will submit part 7 and resubmit part 1 to 6 as a complete package which will comprise all of your advice to the client on one 7-part report. You will be able to revise your previously submitted work for parts 1 to 6, as part of your final submission, based on the feedback you have received throughout the semester.

Note that you are acting as a consultant, not as the business owner. The client may or may not accept your device. Each week you get the data font the next part of the assignment, you may find that the client has done things differently from what you have recommended. This is what life is like as a consultant. You will have accepted the client’s decisions and make the best recommendations and provide the best advice you can font the next part of the assignment.


The following diagram show the parts of the assignment, the date on which the relevant data will be made available, the deadlines for submission and the dates by which you will receive feedback on the first 6 parts.


The assignment is worth 70% of your overall mark. The breakdown marks is as follows;

Part 1 -  5%

Part 2 - 10%

Part 3 - 10%

Part 4 - 5%

Part 5 - 10%

Part 6 - 5%

Part 7 - 5%

Total of marks each of the 7 parts =50%.

The final submission carries an additional 20% (over and above the 5% for part 7 which will be including in the final submission. This comprises 10% correctly updating the first 6 parts in response to feedback receive, and 10% for overall presentation.

A more details marking guide will be provide along with the data and the specific instructions for each part on the dates indicated above.


The data for each part of the Assignment will be provided via an excel file. You will need to be able to download and view this Excel life. Some students may find that the excel file does not display properly on an Apple device. If this is the case, it may be that you will need to view the data on a PC, such as one in the library, in order to get data to complete each part of the assignment. You should then be able to download the data and then, if you wish, complete you assignment in on an Apple computer.


Each part of your submission, as well as your final submission, should be in the form of a business report. There is no word limit, but a business report should be concise. It should provide all necessary information without being unnecessarily wordy. Detailed working should be provided in appendices, rather than in the body of the report, so that the reader only needs to turn to the appendices if he or she wants to see those working. But the actual results, including all financial reports, must be in the body of the report.

 You are strongly encouraged to prepare tables of the data (e.g. financial statements) in a spreadsheets, and to use the functionality of the spreadsheet to perform calculations; e.g. top add up totals and subtotals, calculate tax, etc. – don’t just type in numbers you have calculate using a calculator. This will save time and greatly reduce the chance of error.

Your submission can be in the form of word, PDF and/or Excel files. You advised to use word 
(or a similar word processing program) for the main body of your report. However if you use a word- processor other than word for the main body of the report, you must convert it to a PDF file to ensure that the person marking your assignment can open it.

Note that it is very difficult to prepare a business report in Excel, and assignment done wholly in excel usually receive very low marks of presentation. The best presentation is usually achieved by preparing financial tables in excel and then copying and pasting them into the main body of the report (or into appendices) in word. Alternatively, your appendices can be in form of one or more separate Excel files if you wish, but take care with presentation.

Your submissions must be made via drop boxes which will be provide on the LMS – emailed submissions will not be accepted. Feedback will be provided via the same drop boxes.


Be very careful about plagiarism. Everything you should submit should be your own work, in your own words. If you quote word-for –word, or paraphrase, from another source, provide a reference to that source. If you are quoting word-for-word, the quote must be in quotation marks. There is no particular referencing style required – just give credit if you are using someone else’s words. If you quote word-for-word from someone else, including another student, without attribution (that means without specifying where the quote has come from) you will be reported for academic Misconduct, which can result in severe penalties, such as zero for the work or falling the subject.


Part 1 – Financing the Business (5%)

Data provided

  • Your client has approached you about a business the client would like to start. You will be provided with basic information about the client’s proposed business.

Tasks required

  • Describe and discuss the various sources of finance available to the business, both in the starting up of the business and to finance expansion.
  • Explain the advantages and disadvantages of the different sources of finance in different situations.
  • Make specific recommendations as to which source of finance would be best for this business and to finance future expansions.

Part 2 – Preparing the Financial Statements (10%)

Data provide

  • Your client’s business has now been up and running for one year. You will be providing with details financial data relating to the value of assets, liabilities and equity, as well as revenue and expenditure over the past year.

Tasks required

  • Prepare the balance sheet, profit and loss statements and statements of cash flows.

Part 3 – Financial Statements Analysis (10%)

Data provide

  • Another 3 years have passed. You will be provided with the firm’s most balance sheets, profit and loss statements and statements of cash flows for the past 3 years.
  • You will also be provided with the rations for similar businesses for each of these ratios.

Tasks required

  • Calculate each of a set of specified financial ratios for the last 3 years.
  • Discuss any trends you have identified and discuss strengths and weaknesses compared to similar business.
  • Give an overall view of the financial health to the firm.

Part 4 – Cost of the capital (5%)

Data provide

  • You will be provided with the firm’s most recent balance sheet.

Tasks required

  • Calculate the firm’s cost of Capital.

Part 5 – Project Evaluation (10%)

Data provided

  • You will also be provided with information about a project the firm is planning to undertake.

Tasks required

  • Forecast future cash flows for the project.
  • Calculate the NPV of the decision to undertake the project
  • Make a recommendation as to whether or not the firm should undertake the project.

Part 6 – Budgeting

 Data provide

  • You will be provided with the firm’s budgeted monthly sales for the next 12 months, as well as other relevant financial information about the firm’s accounts receivables collection history, accounts payable policy and inventory requirements.

Tasks required

  • Prepare the cash budget, Accounts Receivable Budget, Accounts payable Budget and inventories Budget.

Part 7 – Production Decisions

Data provide

  • You will be provided with information about the firm’s revenue and costs.

Tasks required

  • Determine the firm’s break-even point.
  • Determine the level of output and sales needed to establish various levels of profit.

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