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Archive | September, 2014

SEC and SBA Announcements Lay the Foundation for Training Small Businesses on How to Use Crowdfunding in the United States

19 Sep

SBA Partners with SEC to Offer Nationwide Jumpstart Our Business Startups (Jobs) Act Training Programs to Help Small Businesses Learn How to Raise Startup Capital

By Robert Hoskins

Washington, DC – The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced that it will join the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) in co-hosting a series of events around the country to help small business owners learn about new opportunities to raise capital under the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act.  The first event will be hosted by the University of Baltimore’s Merrick School of Business on Sept. 25 from 2 p.m.to 4 p.m. EST.

SBA Partners with SEC on Offer Nationwide Jumpstart Our Business Startups (Jobs) Act Training Programs Events to Help Small Businesses Learn How to Raise Startup Capital

SBA Partners with SEC on Offer Nationwide Jumpstart Our Business Startups (Jobs) Act Training Programs to Help Small Businesses Learn How to Raise Startup Capital

“We believe that any new, inclusive and innovative paths that help small businesses gain access to the capital they need are good things, but these paths should be implemented with prudence and care,” said Javier Saade, Associate Administrator for SBA’s Office of Investment and Innovation. “We’re happy to join forces with the SEC to have these important, interactive discussions with small businesses around the country about existing and pending capital raising options under the JOBS Act.”

The JOBS Act events are intended for existing and aspiring small businesses, including minority-owned, women-owned and veteran-owned small businesses to learn about opportunities to raise capital under the JOBS Act.  One change already in place under the JOBS Act allows firms to advertise certain private offerings and another pending change allows firms to offer and sell securities through crowdfunding.

Representatives from SBA’s Offices of Investment and Innovation and Entrepreneurial Development, will join representatives from SEC’s Offices of Small Business Policy, Investor Education and Advocacy and Minority Women Inclusion to cohost the events highlighting additional ways for small businesses to raise funds under current and proposed SEC rules.

The events are designed for existing and aspiring small businesses, including those that are minority-owned, women-owned, and veteran-owned, and will discuss the JOBS Act, which expands the options that businesses may use to raise capital.  One change already in place gives firms the ability to advertise certain private offerings; a second that is pending will allow firms to offer and sell securities through crowdfunding. The SEC is actively developing rules to implement JOBS Act provisions.

Representatives from the SEC’s Office of Small Business Policy in the Division of Corporation Finance, the Office of Investor Education and Advocacy, and the Office of Minority and Women Inclusion will co-host the events with the SBA’s Office of Investment and Innovation and the SBA’s Office of Entrepreneurial Development.

The events will highlight additional ways small businesses may seek to raise funds under current and proposed SEC rules.  The events will also give small business owners an opportunity to ask questions of the SEC and SBA staff.

The events are free and will give small business owners the opportunity to ask questions of SBA and SEC staff members.  Those interested in registering for the Sept. 25 event at the University of Baltimore may do so: here.

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Positive Letters Needed to Support the SEC’s Ability to Crowdfunding Pass Title III Guidelines for Small Business

8 Sep

The SEC Claims that It Does Not Have Sufficient Positive Industry Support to Implement Title III Crowdfunding. Let’s Change that Today by Sending in 10,000 Letters and Tweets from American Entrepreneurs and Small Businesses that Want Access to Small Business VC

By Robert Hoskins

Washington, D.C. – I’d like to start off by saying “Hats off” to Justin Ryan and Terell Jones for putting on an awesome Kickercon crowdfunding event in Houston last month. It was, by far, the best crowdfunding conference we have attended to date! All of crowdfunding subject matter experts were there, but this conference did a much better job than most because they addressed where the crowdfunding industry is headed instead of just rehashing the old facts and figures of the JOBS Act.

There were numerous tracks on the Texas Intrastate Crowdfunding Exemption, an excellent Crowdfunding Boot Camp put on by InventIt2Day’s Conley Giles, and great panel discussions on the up and coming real estate crowdfunding industry, but the most important event by far was a presentation by Ron Miller, who has been meeting with numerous officials the SEC in an attempt to try and understand the SEC’s hesitation to implement Title III crowdfunding rules, which are now way overdue.

 

Please Retweet - I suppport Title III Crowdfunding

Please Retweet – We support Title III Crowdfunding to Start Small Businesses!

 

Mr. Miller gave a convincing presentation based on comments from SEC Commissioners and many of its staff members.  The SEC is basically saying that in 560+ pages of public comments, the negative comments outweigh the positive comments supporting the implementation and communicated that if they had a lot more positive support from Americans then they would be more motivated to pass the final guidelines.

In the Crowdfunding Industry we pride ourselves on utilizing the crowd to accomplish many objectives such as raising money for crowdfunding campaigns and helping crowdfunding platforms police potential equity investment deals.

Unlike many established industries, members of the crowdfunding industry have very advanced social media capabilities and very large networks of contacts on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube and other important social media networks. One of Mr. Miller’s main points was that the crowdfunding industry should begin working together to leverage these social media networks to drum more support.

During the event’s Q&A session, with an after show audience of almost 500 crowdfunding enthusiasts, several comments suggested developing a Title III Crowdfunding Support Form Letter and providing the contact information on where to mail or email these positive Title III Crowdfunding support letters.  Others suggested creating HeadTalker or ThunderClap campaigns.

In addition, the audience and the event hosts suggested contacting your U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. State Senators to let them know that support for Title III Crowdfunding Rules will be an important factor when considering who to vote for this fall.

Please show the SEC your overwhelming support for Title III Crowdfunding and let them know that the general public, entrepreneurs and small businesses are 100% behind creating a Title III equity crowdfunding industry in the United States. Please download a copy of this Form Letter, add your contact information and then send it the SEC. It will take less than 5 minutes, but can make a difference for the crowdfunding industry.

Please repost, retweet and reblog this story.  All copyrights are waived on both the text and the image. Please retweet and republish at will!

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Feel free to mention these handles in your tweets:

 

Over the Past 35 Years, LearnToPlayMusic.com has Transformed the Music Lesson Industry Three Times, Generated More Than 25+ Million Book & Video Sales and is about to Launch the Next Spotify / Oyster Music Content Platform

8 Sep

Created for Musicians by Musicians, @LTPMusic has been pioneering the way people learn to play music utilizing printed music books, videos, CDs & DVDs, eBooks & WebTV shows and soon will be launching a brand new type of digital music teaching platform

By Robert Hoskins

Los Angeles, California – For a company that has defied convention by flying under the radar for most of its life, www.LearnToPlayMusic.com (originally called, Koala Music Publications) has a lot of reasons to celebrate on its 35th birthday. The company has just launched a new ecommerce website and wrapped up production on the first season of its acclaimed WebTV series, Music Space. Soon it will be unveiling a new state-of-the-art digital music lesson content platform that will provide the next game-changing evolution of the music learning industry for up and coming musicians.

As rock-n-roll musicians from the same music scene as AC/DC, playing on bills supporting INXS and other iconic Australian rock bands, Gary Turner and Brenton White found their passion in teaching people how to play music. Frustrated at the lack of music training materials for the contemporary guitarist, the duo sensed a huge business opportunity. In 1979 they drew up a business plan on a napkin and soon thereafter founded Koala Music Productions in Adelaide, Australia (click here to read the rest of the story).

LearnToPlayMusic's Free Ebook and New Digital Music Teaching Platform

LearnToPlayMusic’s Free Ebook and New Digital Music Teaching Platform

“When we first started, if you were a kid who really wanted to learn how to play the guitar, or the piano, or the violin, you had two options; you took lessons with a teacher or you bought a music lesson book from the local music store and taught yourself,” said Gary Turner, LearnToPlayMusic.com’s CEO. “In today’s world, kids are armed with laptops, tablets, and smartphones and now social media and digital content sharing networks are the focal point of their lives and are used 24×7 to keep in touch with friends and family. To tap into this new lifestyle, we realized that once again that we needed to transform our business. In 2009, we started this journey by digitizing over 35-years worth of music lessons, music books and an entire library of analog instructional music videos.”

“We have been tracking the success of subscription-based digital music, eBook and movie downloading services and platforms such as Amazon Prime, Oyster, Netflix, and Spotify. These media companies have been very successful at transforming the way they interact with and sell content and new services to customers,” Turner continued. “We think the music learning industry is going to be very impressed when we unveil our new leading-edge digital music platform, which will make it much easier for aspiring musicians, their parents and music teachers, music schools and music stores to get involved and share the wealth from the booming digital music industry.”

Turner added that, “Soon we will be launching an Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign that will allow musicians and anyone in the music teaching industry to get involved in building our platform. We will be offering some really cool perks to support and fund the project and give everyone that contributes a small piece of the action.”

To receive more information on LearnToPlayMusic.com’s new Digital Media Platform please register at www.learntoplaymusic.com/freemium or contact Gary Turner at gat@learntoplaymusic.com.

A full press kit is available at www.learntoplaymusic.com/press-room.

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Arc Angel Seeks Dealers, Ecommerce Sites, Franchises, Resellers, and Manufacturer’s Representatives to Pre-Sell Stun Canes, Pet Defenders and Tactical Stun Devices (TSD)

8 Sep

@ArcAngelStunGun prepares to place its first large-scale manufacturing run and would like to pass along big discounts and savings to dealers and wholesalers who help achieve higher-volumes and lower prices

By Robert Hoskins

Los Angeles, CA – After receiving strong customer demand for its Stun Canes, Big Sticks and Pet Defenders, Arc Angel (www.aastuncane.com) is now building out its sales and distribution channel network and plans to place its first large manufacturing production run earlier than expected. To secure better pricing for its distribution partners, Arc Angel is now offering up to 50% discounts for a limited time to retailers/dealers, resellers and distributors who are willing to place orders now to help increase Arc Angel’s volume for its first large manufacturing production run. Larger order quantities will achieve better volume production discounts and provide more margin for Arc Angel’s channel partners.

Arc Angel Stun Canes, Stun Sticks and  Tactical Stun Guns offer a Non-Lethal Self Defense Weapon for Consumers and Law Enforcement Agencies

Arc Angel Stun Canes, Stun Sticks and Tactical Stun Guns offer a Non-Lethal Self Defense Weapon for Consumers and Law Enforcement Agencies

“Arc Angel Stun Canes and Pet Defenders are manufactured with rugged, industrial-strength, aircraft aluminum form factors, long-lasting NiMh batteries and are manufactured to compete directly against the Taser Stun Gun as an affordable, non-lethal force option for law enforcement agencies,” said Glenn Willey, Arc Angel’s CEO. “Our products are built to last with intense daily use, not just by consumers, but by large professional security forces with brute strength requirements.”

“Right now Stun Canes, Big Sticks and Pet Defenders are marketed to consumers seeking self-protection options,” Willey continued. “But soon Arc Angel will be introducing a new line of Tactical Stun Devices (TSDs) that will target police, military, emergency first defenders, federal government, homeland security and other types of tactical security/law enforcement agencies that will benefit from using non-lethal force as an alternative to loaded firearms in order to avoid wrongful death lawsuits like the Darren Wilson/Michael Brown ordeal in Ferguson, Missouri when possible.”

If Darren Wilson had been carry a Tactical Stun Gun instead of a gun, Michael Brown might still be alive.

All channel partners that sign up to participate in Arc Angel Channel Marketing Program will receive a special preview briefing on the new TSD product line after signing a NDA. They also will be allowed to participate in bringing this product to market in an upcoming Indiegogo crowdfunding campaign, which will be supported by a nationwide advertising, PR and social media cooperative marketing campaign.

Tactical Stun Gun Channel Marketing Partners Wanted:

  • Self Defense Ecommerce Sites – Arc Angel seeks eCommerce centers, online stores and blogs that sell self defense stun guns, Tasers, tactical weapons, police gear and/or uniforms to resell its products.
  • Tactical Gear Retailers, Gun Dealers, Stores – Arc Angel seeks retailers and dealers that sell stun guns, Tasers, tactical weapons, law enforcement gear and/or uniforms to stock its tactical stun gun and self defense products.
  • Non-Lethal Self Defense Franchises – Arc Angel seeks franchisors/franchisees that would like to add Arc Angel’s Stun Canes, Pet Defenders and Tactical Stun Devices to their franchise’s self-defense product portfolio.
  • Stun Gun Resellers, Distributors, Wholesalers – Arc Angel seeks resellers, and distributors that sell stun guns, Tasers, tactical weapons, police gear and/or uniforms that would like resell and distribute Arc Angel’s Stun Canes, Big Sticks, Pet Defenders and Tactical Stun Devices.
  • Self Protection Manufacturer’s Representatives – Arc Angel seeks manufacturer reps that sell complementary law enforcement, military tactical gear and self-protection product lines into big box retailers and would like to add Arc Angel Tactical Stun Device (TSD) products to their non-lethal, self-protection and law enforcement portfolios.

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Mike Mongo Launches InkShares Crowdfunding Campaign to Write New Astronaut Instruction Manual for Kids in Key West, Florida

2 Sep

The Astronaut Instruction Manual for Kids Lays Out Course to Become an Astronaut by the Year 2025 and Prepare for Careers in Space

By Robert Hoskins

Key West, Florida – Launching a campaign for his debut non-fiction space careers book, “The Astronaut Instruction Manual for Pre-Teens,” on web-based crowdfunding publishing platform Inkshares.com this week, professional space educator and self-described ‘astronaut teacher’ Mike Mongo is on a mission: to get your kids to space.

Mike Mongo Launches InkShares Crowdfunding Campaign to Write New Astronaut Instruction Manual for Pre-Teens

Mike Mongo Launches InkShares Crowdfunding Campaign to Write New Astronaut Instruction Manual for Pre-Teens

“Being a native Floridian, I am a life-long advocate of space. When it comes to converting for space, I was practically born into the role, “ says 49-year old Mongo. “It is one of the reasons I became such a dedicated proponent of space careers to students.”

In addition to his role as Chief Brand & Culture Officer for interstellar space science advocacy non-profit, Icarus Interstellar, and being a popular speaker at space science conferences, Mongo is the Key West-based author of HUMANNAIRES! Mike Mongo’s Astronaut Instruction Manual for Pre-Teens. After initially self-publishing, Mongo’s book has recently received a new burst of attention and activity from having been selected for crowdfunding by publishing startup Inkshares.com.

“Inkshares is a better model than traditional publishing,”said Adam Gomolin, Inkshares’ Chief Legal Officer, “one that is more remunerative for authors, and more sensibly disperses risk, but does not diminish quality.”

At Inkshares, books are selected by Inkshares editors and then prepared for crowdfunding. After a crowdfund campaign, the successfully funded books are then published for release and distribution in the general market.

“[Our] model allows us to gauge interest in a title and build a community around a book or piece of writing before it even hits the marketplace,” Gomolin explains, “It is like a traditional publishing house with all the editing, marketing and art support — the difference being the crowdfunding model and that our authors keep a lion share of their sales proceeds. In our opinion, everybody wins. And Mike Mongo’s Astronaut Instruction Manual for Pre-Teens is a title all of us here at Inkshares are very excited about.”

Mongo says the time is right to encourage middle-school age students to pursue careers in in space. “The difference from when I grew up during the Apollo, Skylab, and Space Shuttle eras, and today…is that today private industry is taking the space industry to unimagined heights. Companies like SpaceX, Virgin Galactic, XCOR, and Bigelow Aerospace are tomorrow’s Apple and Google, they are tomorrow’s Hilton and Ford. These are real companies that already offer real jobs, and soon those jobs with be in space. ”

The crowdfund campaign kicked off this past week for The Astronaut Instruction Manual for Pre-Teens and has already achieved nearly 15% of its $10,000 goal. If the campaign reaches its financial goal by the campaign’s October 15th deadline, the book will then immediately be prepared for publication.

“It’s exciting,” says Mongo. “I became an astronaut teacher and wrote The Astronaut Instruction Manual for Pre-Teens when it dawned on me several years ago how, for me, astronaut was no longer a viable career option. That epiphany is the exact reason why I became an astronaut teacher and why I wrote the book. I want to make sure all the young students today who want to go to space realize that they genuinely do have the opportunity to live, work, and place in space…and maybe one of them will be so inspired by my book and they will remember and hold a seat for me to come along too!”

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