Want to start crowdfinancing? Creating a well-known, reliable and consistent brand is what makes investors want to give you their hard-earned money.
Smart entrepreneurs, some Title III crowdfunding skeptics say, do not want hundreds or thousands of unsophisticated angel investors mucking up their capitalization tables, annoying founders with questions, suggestions, job applications, and—gulp—complaints.
Title III equity offerings are predominantly C corporation stock, limited liability company (LLC) membership units, convertible debt, and a relatively new structure called a simple agreement for future equity (SAFE). This article covers the fundamentals of each of these securities, and their advantages and drawbacks for investors.
Crowdfunded equity investments are generally illiquid for two reasons: (a) the one-year holding period and (b) the lack of organized secondary markets for Title III shares.
The business plan is one of the documents that issuers must provide to investors in Title III offerings. Here are the ten critical questions a strong business should answer:
This article takes a different approach from the previous one. Here I tell you about common omissions and mistakes in business plans, any of which should make you cautious about the company’s offering.
This brief history includes rewards, donation, debt, and equity crowdfunding platforms in the USA, going all the way back to 2003.
Crowdfunding is a method of collecting many small contributions, by means of an online funding platform, to finance or capitalize a popular enterprise. Crowdfunding gained traction in the United States when Brian Camelio, a Boston musician and computer programmer, launched ArtistShare in 2003.
On equity crowdfunding portals and platforms, you will have an opportunity to collaborate on deal selection and due diligence with other investors. Like social networks, the portals/platforms will show profiles of the investors who participate in these discussions, so you can assess their expertise and credibility.
Supporters of crowdfunding acknowledge that some fraud will probably occur, as it does everywhere—including the public securities markets. But they point to the low instance of fraud in rewards-based crowdfunding in the United States, and in equity-based crowdfunding in Australia (since 2006) and the United Kingdom (since 2012), where unsophisticated investors participate in private securities offerings.
Title III of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act of 2012 allows all investors, regardless of income or net worth, to invest in startups and growing private companies via funding portals that are registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission.