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Archive | May, 2014

YouTube Planning New Crowdfunding Service for Video Creators

24 May

New crowdfunding feature will allow fans to directly contribute funds to their favorite video and music creators on YouTube

By Robert Hoskins

YouTube recently announced that they are planning a new Crowdfunding tool for people that upload videos. Wowser.  If you can upload a YouTube video and start raising money without the need for a crowdfunding platform such as Indiegogo, KarmaKrowd or Kickstarter, what will that do to the 1,000+ crowdfunding platform’s business model?

YouTube Planning Crowdfunding Service for Video Creators

YouTube Planning Crowdfunding Service for Video Creators

YouTube said:

“In the coming months, you’ll hear more from us about:

  • A separate mobile app that puts the creator features you told us were most important to have in the palm of your hand, right when you need them
  • A feature that allows fans to directly contribute funds to their favorite creators on YouTube
  • A way to harness the power of the crowd to create captions and subtitles for your videos in 60+ languages

These features will join a few recent updates, including new comment management features, a way for artists to share in revenue from eligible cover song videos, and our ever-expanding Creator Academy.”

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Israel is Now the Most Likely Place for People to Start a Tech Firm, States a Recent Economist Article Featuring a World Startup Report

20 May

Upround Ventures Announces First Series A/B Mentor Exchange and Upcoming Innovation Summit Events to Help Startups Cross the Series A Investment Chasm 

 By Robert Hoskins

Tel Aviv, Israel – Upround Ventures announcing two new events, Mentor Exchange and Innovation Summitthat will be held in Israel. Upround Ventures targets the gaps that exist after startups graduate accelerator programs or are initially funded with crowdfunding or angel sources. The firm engages qualified Israeli-based technology startups with a broad spectrum of financial and strategic capital from Europe, Asia, The United States, and Russia, helping to build relationships, create long-term value and grow networks worldwide.

Upround Ventures engages qualified, premium start-ups with active, global investors — to help address the Series A crunch.

Upround Ventures engages qualified, premium start-ups with active, global investors — to help address the Series A crunch.

“There is a chasm in the ecosystem today for Series A — the new Series B startups that are outside the Silicon Valley cocoon. Upround Ventures was launched based on feedback from both high-caliber entrepreneurs seeking more choices for capital globally, as well as investors in various parts of the world, who have been asking for smarter ways to reach new premium deal flow,” said Esther Loewy, founder and CEO, Upround Ventures. “It’s about democratizing the playing field and providing a continuum of process, funding and guidance.”

With an estimated 375 startups per million inhabitants, versus 190 in America, Israel is now the most likely place for people to start a tech firm, states a recent Economist article featuring a World Startup Report. Upround Ventures has already begun to identify and cultivate the game-changing technologies born in this region, then pair promising entrepreneurs with a network of VCs and other strategic investors who can fuel their sustained growth, and in turn, a thriving innovation economy globally.

Series A/B Mentor Exchange
A first-of-its-kind, Upround Venture’s Series A/B Mentor Exchange offers a network of experienced serial entrepreneurs and veteran executives to guide innovative early-stage technology companies in getting to the next stage. Mentors include Bruce Haymes of Nielsen, Ornit Shinar of Citi, Zohar Levkovitz of Amobee, and Ben Enosh of Plymedia, among others, who bring expertise spanning sales and marketing to financing and patents, to qualified post-seed-stage companies in the Network. The Mentor Exchange is the first of several initiatives to be kicked off this year that further reinforce the value proposition for Series-A-ready startups, as well as partners and investors.

“After startups graduate from incubators and accelerators they are often left in a ‘black hole’ without the support or expert advice they had while incubating. Upround’s Mentor Exchange provides entrepreneurs with an added edge at this critical stage; expert resources needed to hone their product, gain traction, build awareness, and network with global investors and partners,” commented Stephan Paternot, CEO of Slated, Inc. and advisor to Upround Ventures.

Upround Innovation Summit (Twitter #UproundSummit2014)
On May 19th, Upround Ventures will gather many of the world’s rising startups with global investors and corporate development executives looking for high-value, pre-screened companies.

To be held at IBM’s Innovation Center in Israel, the Upround Innovation Summit will feature:

  • Globally renowned speakers from Silicon Valley, Hong Kong, France and other regions (see Agenda)
  • The hottest technology startups in Israel, with innovations in mobile, media, big data, and Internet of Things, seeking strategic partnerships and global investment
  • Active investors from the U.S., Europe and Asia, including Runa Capital, Benhamou Global Ventures, Alsop Louie, Culturecom Holdings, BMW i Ventures, Alcatel-Lucent, Honda, H-Farm & Orange Capital
  • Sponsors and partners, including InvestHK, IBM, Herzog Fox & Neeman, Plymedia, CICC, TEICC, and StarTAU

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Equity Crowdfunding Site, ReturnonChange.com, Raises $1 Million to Finance Solar Rooftop Installations

18 May

Geostellar, a leading online solar rooftop marketplace successfully raises $1 million round of funding on Return on Change, an online investment platform based in New York

By Robert Hoskins

New York, NY – Noted as the “KAYAK of solar rooftop installations,” Geostellar helps homeowners secure the best deals on solar rooftop panels by comparing and tailoring a variety of installation and financing plans. The majority of the capital raised will be used to further develop Geostellar’s platform to facilitate interactions between solar sales agents and homeowners, and an API for integration with third-party Web sites and mobile tools.

Return on Change was particularly helpful in finding the right investors for us. They had all the information in front of them, and pushing the ‘Invest’ button was a simple way to express their interest in participating. It was easy for me to update the site, rather than circulating new documents…Raising capital online since the JOBS Act makes it much easier to spread the word, get potential investors engaged and provide information,” the CEO of Geostellar, David Levine stated.

Geostellar set the terms for their raise on Return on Change. Howard Teich, an investor of Geostellar stated, “The ease of Return on Change’s investment program allowed me to invest in one of the most important companies on the planet Geostellar. Without Return on Change we would not have been able to show up and take action to participate…”

“We believe Geostellar is a clear example of a business that has profit potential for investors and long term sustainable value. Our team had a great time working alongside Geostellar’s team, collaborating on sharing the opportunity with potential investors to reach the $1 million goal. Additionally, Geostellar’s proactive strategy in attracting investments was paramount to their successful fundraise. We’re excited to form a long term relationship with Geostellar and see how we can continue to be of value to their growth,” Sang H. Lee, CEO of Return on Change shared.

Return on Change’s platform provides startups with the tools to efficiently connect with accredited investors online. Its centralized capital raise management tools allow entrepreneurs to easily disseminate information, handle investor accreditation, and access investors outside of an entrepreneur’s direct network. Partnering with CrowdCheck and WealthForge Holdings, Return on Change will continue to provide useful tools and networks to enable investors and startups to thrive in the equity crowdfunding space.

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Crowdfunding Securities Research and Valuation Firm Signs Agreement with Technology and Services Company to Expand International Opportunities

18 May

New relationship adds value to Crowd Valley and Zacks CF Research by expanding the reach of both companies

By Robert Hoskins

Chicago, IL – A strategic relationship between two crowdfunding leaders holds the promise of an expanded reach and increased value for both companies. Zacks CF Research and CrowdValley look forward to expanded international services in the partnership.

Zacks Investment Research is a Chicago based firm with over 30 years of experience in providing investors with the analytical tools and financial information necessary for the success of their investment processes.

Zacks Investment Research is a Chicago based firm with over 30 years of experience in providing investors with the analytical tools and financial information necessary for the success of their investment processes.

“The opportunity to expand into foreign markets just cannot be underestimated. The global market for direct investing is huge and getting bigger all the time. International crowdfunding will become increasingly important in the next few years,” says Howard Orloff, vice-president and director of Zacks CF Research.

In fact, the crowdfunding space has grown in the last five years from a handful of sites to nearly 1,000 securities crowdfunding platforms operating across the world.

“The growth and globalization of the crowdfunding and private securities market is driving the need for more information so that investors can make informed decisions,” said Crowd Valley CEO, Markus Lampinen. “We believe Zacks is well positioned to provide much needed information and transparency in this emerging market, in large part because Zacks is an established and respected public and private company research market leader, with an outstanding reputation among US financial industry actors. This is the type of credibility needed in the international securities crowdfunding space.”

He added “Crowd Valley is committed to working with exceptional companies and we look forward to working with Zacks and continuing to expand and develop the services we offer to our customers and partners.”

Expanding into international markets is something Zacks CF Research has planned to do from the beginning, Mr. Orloff says. The company was waiting for the right opportunity and the right platform provider to partner with.

“When Zacks CF Research approached Crowd Valley about doing their securities research, we knew this exactly the opportunity we’d been looking for. Crowd Valley operates on six continents, which gives us immediate global access that wasn’t possible elsewhere.” he said.

For their part, Crowd Valley was looking for a company which could provide independent and reliable valuations for its clientele. “Foreign markets do provide a potential for excellent returns, but obtaining information on foreign investment opportunities could present challenges to investors, simply for the reason that the rules differ from those in the US. By partnering with Zacks we aim at filling this informational gap, providing our customers with reliable information sources, and fostering international investments in the securities crowdfunding market”, he added.

Zacks CF Research provides independent, 3rd party valuation reports for crowdfunded securities offered through our portal partners. Zacks CF Research is the leading provider of crowdfunding valuation reports for Title III, Intrastate and International crowdfunded issues. Zacks employs over 600 professionals between our Chicago headquarters and offices overseas and is the second largest independent financial research firm in the nation.

Crowd Valley provides the platform, back office and ecosystem services for crowd funding, peer to peer investing and alternative asset marketplaces for securities professionals. The Crowd Valley infrastructure also allows customers to syndicate investments and tap into networks of investors around the world.

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Licensed Broker-Dealer Signs Deal with Due-Diligence Services Provider to Provide CUSIP Identifiers for Private Placement Offerings

18 May

WealthForge will be the first broker-dealer to offer CUSIP identifiers for private offerings

 By Robert Hoskins

New York, NY – CUSIP Global Services (CGS) and WealthForge announced acollaborationin the registrationofCUSIP identifiers for private placement offerings.   Meant to serve the rapidly growing market for online capital formation colloquially known as “crowdfunding,” this joint initiative will bring the precision and reliabilityofCUSIP identifiers to a new sector of the market.

WealthForge will be the first broker-dealer to offer CUSIP identifiers for private offerings

WealthForge will be the first broker-dealer to offer CUSIP identifiers for private offerings

Useful primarily for trade communication as well as clearing and settlement activities, CUSIPs for Crowdfunding will function like CUSIPs for other types of securities, and will feature the same 6-character issuer and 9-character issue format upon which so many market participants have come to rely.  CUSIPs for Crowdfunding are available upon request for most offerings with valid support documentation.

“Making CUSIPs available to private placements adds credibility and legitimacy to this emerging asset class, making crowdfunding more like existing markets,” said Mat Dellorso, CEO of WealthForge. “Just as publicly traded securities are easy to find and easy to track through a CUSIP, we believe the same should be true of these new online securities. This partnership will make that possible.”

In addition to the functionality available through WealthForge’s portals, CUSIPs for Crowdfunding are available via a jointly promoted website, .

“We are pleased to enter this new market with WealthForge as a partner,” said Jim Taylor, Managing Director and Head of CGS. “With the support of our industry-appointed Board of Trustees, it is CGS’ mandate to bring the efficiency and reliability of CUSIP identifiers and descriptive data to new markets – Crowdfunding is a natural extension of that philosophy.”

WealthForge will be the first broker-dealer to offer CUSIP identifiers for private offerings.

Added Dellorso, “In the near term, we are focused on enabling our partners to better communicate and promote their offerings to potential investors. In the long-term, our vision is to create increased liquidity opportunities for private securities – a CUSIP on each one is an important step toward achieving that goal.”

WealthForge Holdings, Inc. is a firm that enables online private investments – investments made in companies, particularly small businesses and startups, that are not on a public exchange. WealthForge provides the technology and oversight needed to complete these private investment transactions within SEC regulations through its wholly-owned licensed broker-dealer subsidiary.

Some of WealthForge’s services include compliance, investor verification, transaction processing, shareholder services and access to larger pools of capital. WealthForge’s broker-dealer subsidiary has been operating as a member of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) since 2009.

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Indiegogo Principal Adam Chapnick Bets Big on Real Estate Crowdfunding, Joins Upstart Platform AssetAvenue

17 May

Former Principal Exits VC-Darling Indiegogo to Oversee Strategy at Commercial Real Estate Platform Up-and-Comer

By Robert Hoskins

Los Angeles, CA  – Adam Chapnick believes real estate crowdfunding is on the precipice of becoming a major disrupting force in real estate investing, and chose to join AssetAvenue’s team of highly experienced real estate and technology professionals, betting big on a newcomer in one of the fastest-growing segments of the crowdfunding market.

New Equity Crowdfunding Platform Kicks Off by Closing First Deal in Manhattan's Exclusive Trump Palace Within 48 Hours of Launch

New Equity Crowdfunding Platform Kicks Off by Closing First Deal in Manhattan’s Exclusive Trump Palace Within 48 Hours of Launch

The  former principal and employee number one with leading crowdfunding platform Indiegogo, announced that he is leaving the industry giant to join real estate crowdfunding company AssetAvenue. The company’s first completed deal raised $485,000 from investors in less than 48 hours to acquire a commercial real estate loan backed by office space in New York City’s prestigious Trump Palace.

“AssetAvenue’s disruptive vision and the team’s industry expertise are what set the company apart. The leadership team has decades of combined real estate experience, and they’re focused on breaking barriers, which is music to my ears,” said Chapnick. “When AssetAvenue CEO David Manshoory shared the scale of what he’s aiming to accomplish, I knew this was a mission I wanted to be a part of and the team I had to join. I can’t wait for the impact we’re going to make together.”

Chapnick joined Indiegogo as its first employee in 2009 and quickly helped the company grow into new markets and become one of the most successful crowdfunding platforms in the world. The company, which recently announced it raised a $40 million Series B round in January led by prominent investors Kleiner Perkins and Institutional Venture Partners, has hosted more than 200,000 campaigns to date in over 175 countries, four languages and five currencies.

Chapnick will be AssetAvenue’s chief strategy officer, bringing his expansive network and crowdfunding expertise to revolutionize the real estate investment experience for real estate sponsors, lenders and retail and institutional investors.

“We are thrilled that Adam has chosen AssetAvenue as his next home out of all the opportunities available to him,” said Manshoory. “We’re excited to couple one of the thought leaders in the crowdfunding industry with our real estate team to create an exceptional experience for our community.”

“Crowdfunding as a whole has been an incredibly revolutionary force in so many business verticals. It was thrilling to help drive this growth as the original player in the space,” added Chapnick. “Looking forward, those of us who are steeped in crowdfunding have seen real estate as the next explosive opportunity, given the sheer market size, coupled with all of its financial benefits to investors.”

Headquartered in Los Angeles, AssetAvenue is led by a management team leveraging a combined $10 billion in commercial real estate acquisitions experience. The company was founded in December 2013 by CEO David Manshoory, a seasoned real estate professional and successful entrepreneur with a track record of building rapid-growth companies.

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DealScene.com Takes Advantage of New General Solicitation Laws to Market Private Placement Offerings to Accredited Investors

17 May

 In the first six months since adoption, operating companies have filed to raise $6 billion using general solicitation

By Robert Hoskins

Rye, New Hampshire – Investor Access LLC announced today that it launched DealScene.com to connect investors with private companies raising capital.  The inaugural group of offerings can be viewed at www.dealscene.com.

DealScene.com Takes Advantage of New General Solicitation Laws to Market Private Placement Offerings to Accredited Investors

DealScene.com Takes Advantage of New General Solicitation Laws to Market Private Placement Offerings to Accredited Investors

Through adoption of the new Rule 506(c) exemption, the Securities and Exchange Commission recently lifted the decades-old ban on general solicitation to allow private companies raising capital to appeal directly to potential investors who are not part of their existing network of friends and family.  In the first six months since adoption, operating companies filed to raise $6 billion using general solicitation.  And the substantial majority of these companies are taking a “do it yourself” approach to capital raising.

Against this backdrop, Investor Access developed DealScene to provide a turnkey presentation and deal processing platform in a customizable online environment where companies offer their securities directly to accredited investors. DealScene gives companies investor screening tools, creates a secure environment for companies to share their stories with investors, establishes a second layer of access control to company documents, and provides a back-end process to support efficient closings. Investors receive due diligence information, review investment documents, and participate in discussion forums with managements and each other.

“With the introduction of general solicitation and the appeal of the internet to create connections to investors, more companies need online tools to handle their securities offerings,” said Brad McGee, cofounder of Investor Access, “DealScene is a robust and secure environment that can save companies time and development costs that would be necessary to recreate the capabilities and interactive experience DealScene offers.  This leaves companies free to focus on developing connections to investors.”

“The benefits of DealScene aren’t limited to companies.  Until now, access to investments in private companies relied on exclusive connections and private communications. But recent changes in the securities laws now permit open communications between investors and companies raising capital, creating a transparency previously absent in small company investing.  DealScene affords accredited investors an engaging experience where they can access private placements online and interact with each other and company managements,” Mr. McGee added.

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Accredify Offers High Net Worth Individuals an Easy Way to Invest in Private Equity Crowdfunding Investments

16 May

Universal Verification Solution streamlines the entire process with the benefit of technology making it a superior cost-effective standalone solution

By Robert Hoskins

Miami, FL  – Accredify.co has announced it has released Accredify Connect, a universal log-in and accredited investor verification tool that makes investing online simple and safe. Accredify Connect integrates easily into crowdfunding websites to make equity-based online investing possible. The service works in the same manner as Facebook Connect, where Accredify members sign in to portals to instantly qualify as an investor.

New Verification Service Announces Universal Verification Solution

New Crowdfunding Accredited Investor Verification Service Announces Universal Solution

“The landscape for investing is changing in a very big way,” said Herwig Konings, CEO of Accredify, “Thanks to the JOBS Act, private businesses can now raise funds online from professional investors and soon from the American people as well in exchange for equity.” Konings illustrates the crowdfunding phenomenon by referencing the popular ABC TV show, Shark Tank. “With the JOBS Act, anyone who qualifies can now effectively become a shark with their own money. Entrepreneurs aren’t presenting to just five sharks in a room, but to a vast online audience of anyone and everyone who has the desire and ability to invest in that idea’s success. We believe this enablement of consumer power will lead to radical increases in innovation, jobs, and to an overall healthier economy.”

“One thing we recognized as a major bottleneck in this industry was the need for a compliance solution that was simple enough to be adopted by the industry but comprehensive enough to be secure, confidential, and efficient for investors,” said Will Silverman, CFO and co-founder, “Investors should control who gets access to their information. As investment opportunities become more prevalent, investors would otherwise be forced to hand over sensitive financial information to multiple parties in order to meet compliance and pay potentially hundreds of dollars to an attorney.

Accredify streamlines the entire process with the benefit of technology making it a superior cost-effective standalone solution. It’s simple and secure to verify your financials in confidence and, once verified, you receive a certificate that can be printed for offline deals or used online through Accredify Connect, supported by the industry’s leading platforms.

What distinguishes Accredify from other service providers is its relentless focus on making the crowdfunding process better for investors. Unlike competitors who bundle their verification service with other compliance tools for issuers, Accredify’s customer are able to take back control of the verification process and easily invest online with trusted platforms. Issuers benefit from a free-to-use API and an efficient solution for verifying the high net worth status of potential investors over the Internet.

The SEC recently heard from the Investor Advisory Committee (IAC) on this matter of verification with respect to equity-based crowdfunding for the masses. At an April 10th meeting, the IAC’s Barbara Roper said “…if someone comes along and creates the technological solution… it would be expected portals move on to that system.” The IAC reasonably expects a market innovation will be the answer. “You can imagine the solution that would be developed, but it doesn’t exist.”

Thankfully, a solution DOES exist and it’s called Accredify. Konings added, “The JOBS Act is one of the most citizen-empowering pieces of legislation we’ve seen in a long time. Soon it will be easier than ever for entrepreneurs to find individuals who are ready, willing, and able to invest in startups and Accredify is on a mission to empower that vision with compelling solutions that make it possible for Americans to invest in one another to change the world.”

Accredify, LLC is a Miami-based technology company dedicated to providing independent third-party investor verifications for crowdfunding portals, private equity exchanges, broker-dealer portals, and compliant entrepreneurs seeking to raise equity capital through Rule 506(c) filings. Accredify makes investing easier by innovating the verification process for Accredited & Non-Accredited investors who are otherwise asked to repeatedly submit the same financial information again and again to confirm their status, while serving the needs of equity issuers, who are required by law to verify their investors.

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Solar Crowdfunding Allows Investors, Not Utility Solar Incentives to Drive Rapid Adoption of Distributed Energy

5 May

Investing in Renewable Energy Solar Systems is a Great Way for Investors to Earn a Good Return on Investment While Improving Mother Earth’s Environment

By Robert Hoskins

Belleair Bluffs, FL – The solar industry grew installations by 41% in 2013, and solar accounted for 29% of all new electricity generation capacity added, according to the Solar Energy Industries Association and crowdfunding itself has grown by an estimated 1,000% in the past 5 years.  Forecasts are for the crowdfunding industry to hit $93-billion by 2025, according to the World Bank

This graph shows that ratepayers could save more than $3 billion over 15 years with heavy installations of solar power

Tapping both these growing industry trends, CrowdSun.com is positioned perfectly to ride the wave of the Crowdfunding craze as more as more companies and residential seek ways to fund distributed energy solar power systems that produce power where it’s needed most at the point of use.  This significantly reduces the strain on the grid and saves electric utility companies hundreds of millions of dollars per year in reduced operating costs.

“Most investors in solar projects are the big-money institutions, and they are privy to stable solar investments that can earn anywhere from 4% to 20% annually – until now,” says Mark Yegge, CEO of CrowdSun.com.  “Smaller investors can now take advantage of the shift to green solar energy through our crowdfunding site.”

“We are excited about the prospects.  Our first solar project raised $300,000 in just 3 days.  We think that this is the wave of the future.”

The company matches investors to solar projects that have been screened by staff and 3rd parties to ensure that they are suitable and of high enough quality to present to CrowdSun.com‘s investors.  Solar project developers/owners can list their projects on the site and immediately gain access to thousands of potential investors.

Along with each project you will find a prospectus. This lays out any risks that may come with a project. CrowdSun.com is careful to include all the details down to the contracts, equipment that will be used, developers and installers. In turn this gives you almost a worry free investment with their platform.

Combining these two megatrends: a shift to solar energy, and raising capital via crowdfunding will accelerate opportunities for both developers and investors, both of whom were excluded from access to the market in the recent past.

CrowdSun.com is a crowdfunding site specifically geared towards investment-grade solar projects.  The help solar project developers/owners gain critical access to funding. They also bring high-quality solar projects directly to investors.  The company maintains a relationship with the project owners and investors while servicing the funding after the project goes live.

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Community Banks: Renewed Purpose and Survival through Crowdfunding White Paper Cites Importance of Crowdfunding to Upgrade the Vitality of Community Financial Institutions

5 May

Community Banks Experienced a 24-percent Drop from 2000 to 2013 due to increased regulatory oversight, to competition from non-banks and internal conflicts all involving limited resources

By Robert Hoskins

Sausalito, CA – Breakaway Funding LLC issued the first of a three-part white paper series which describes the changing landscape of the private securities market and the importance of immediately implementing a crowdfunding as a survival tool for community financial institutions.

Kim Kaselionis Breakaway Funding

Kim Kaselionis, Breakaway Funding

“The deregulation of securities laws governing direct solicitation and participation by non-accredited investors, combined with the incredible innovations in technology and widespread adoption of social media is forcing unparalleled change in the private capital market,” said Kim Kaselionis, CommunityLeader’s CEO.

Co-authored by Breakaway Funding founder/managing partner Kim Kaselionis, and CommunityLeader, Inc. CEO/co-founder Joseph Barisonzi, the paper argues that without the integration of a crowdfunding program into their product offerings, community banks will continue to struggle to remain relevant to their commercial clients seeking growth capital.

The first paper is entitled “Banking with Purpose.” The second and third installments to be issued over the next month are “Crowdfunding 101 for Community Bankers” and “Sink or Crowdfund.”

Citing a 24 percent drop in the number of community banks from 2000 to 2013, the authors write that community-based financial institutions face overwhelming challenges, ranging from increased regulatory oversight to competition from non-banks to internal conflicts all seeking limited resources.

“The papers provide community bank leaders with the information they need to build an irrefutable business case,” said Kaselionis, former CEO/chairman of Circle Bank, “and to implement an immediate community-based crowdfunding strategy. We also show how they can preserve valuable relationships to remain competitive in the evolving capital market system. And we explain how the inclusion of potential investors previously prohibited from participating in funding transactions will cause fundamental changes in the market.”

Breakaway Funding, created by Kaselionis in late 2013, is a new funding portal providing a complete capital raising ecosystem through the lens of community bankers.

CommunityLeader was created in 2012 to help organizations understand and operate in the regulatory environment created by the JOBS Act. “The opportunities now and becoming available to financial institutions, small businesses and investors have opened an entirely new financial environment. What we have been able to do for our clients is help them successfully put the applicable provisions of the JOBS Act to work for them. Those who adopt early will find themselves both beneficiaries and leaders in their respective fields,” said Barisonzi.

Breakaway has conducted workshops, seminars and meetings over the past five months and will continue to make available crowdfunding educational information for bankers, businesses and investors

“The deregulation of securities laws governing direct solicitation and participation by non-accredited investors, combined with the incredible innovations in technology and widespread adoption of social media is forcing unparalleled change in the private capital market,” said Barisonzi. “Community banks have a unique opportunity to reclaim their leadership position as the source of growth capital for emerging businesses.”

“What we are seeing is an enormous interest in crowdfunding among bankers, investors and businesses,” Kaselionis said. “The pace of adoption and demand promises to grow steadily as more and more companies successfully fund their companies through this emerging market. Everyone recognizes that our capital markets and investment opportunities are evolving quickly and they seek to learn and educate themselves to see how they may benefit by being part of this economic tsunami.”

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