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andy.pike andy.pike is offline
Join Date: Jul 2005
Posts: 3
Turning a hobby into a business


I have created a software application in my free time that batch processes digital photographs. I have a current version available for download via its website ( To date I have sold over 160 copies which is small but positive bearing in mind this is a hobby project I do on my own in my spare time. I have been working on a new, more powerful version, and feel that this product has the potential to be turned into a full-time small business. I have lots of ideas for various revenue streams, and have already been speaking to third party companies that I can integrate with (mainly for photo printing).

Where do I start? I have no experience in business, so do I need to find a partner to take care of the business side of things while I can work on the product? Also, I need an investor (could be the same person), to invest some cash so I can quit my current day job and work on this project full time. Another option I am considering is selling the entire product (source code, website, customer base, etc) to a buyer that can take the project forward.

I'd be interested in your thoughts.

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Statler's Avatar Statler Statler is offline
Join Date: Sep 2002
Posts: 838
Hi Andy,

My initial thought is - have you looked into getting the software patented? Software patents are a very specialised and new area, so I suggest contacting the Patent Office to find out where you stand:

On the subject of running the business - you could either take a short course, often run by the likes of your local enterprise agency, which would cover the basics of running your own venture. Alternatively, you could take on a partner, employee, or even outsource work to the likes of a virtual Personal Assistant.

As for an investor, there may be business angels who would be interested in your product. You may find it helpful to take a look at the following sites:

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