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Wells Fargo Announces Four-Point Plan to Expand Credit Coaching Programs and Offer $75 Million in Investments, Grants and Micro-Lending for Small Businesses in the U.S.

21 May

To help business owners learn how to obtain credit, as well as better understand the reasons for a decline and learn how to prepare to reapply, Wells Fargo has launched a new Credit Coaching program

  By Robert Hoskins

San Francisco, California – To gain more insight into the experiences of diverse business owners in the areas of lending and operating their businesses, Wells Fargo commissioned Gallup to conduct a national study of small business owners. Today, as Gallup releases the findings (on Gallup.com), Wells Fargo is announcing a four-point plan to address needs identified in the study. The plan will help more diverse small businesses become credit-ready and gain access to credit. The Gallup survey included findings of business owners in six segments – African American, Asian American, Hispanic, LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender), military veteran, and women.

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“Serving diverse communities has long been a focus area and priority for Wells Fargo, yet we know there’s more work to be done, and it starts with gaining a deeper understanding of the experiences of diverse small business owners working with financial institutions,” said Lisa Stevens, head of Small Business for Wells Fargo. “For this reason, we commissioned the Gallup study, which gave us new insight into the perceptions and experiences of diverse business owners working with banks, and how we can improve as a company and as an industry.”

Overall, the national study revealed there are more similarities than differences between small business owners in all diverse segments and those in the general population. It also shows specific areas in which the financial services industry can provide more support for diverse business owners.

Credit Coaching Program

In the Gallup survey, diverse-owned small businesses were more likely to respond that they have been declined for business credit – about one in five African American, Asian and Hispanic business owners said they faced a credit decline in the past (14 percent of general market respondents said they faced a decline). After being declined, a higher percentage of African American business owners (64 percent) said they did not apply for credit again than their peers in the general small business population (47 percent). African American (14 percent) and LGBT (15 percent) business owners also reported greater personal credit challenges than the general market (5 percent).

To help business owners learn how to obtain credit, as well as better understand the reasons for a decline and learn how to prepare to reapply, Wells Fargo has launched an enhanced Credit Coaching program. It offers expanded support to business owners who have been declined business credit. The phone-based program has been rolled out to small business owners who apply for Wells Fargo Business Direct credit products (primarily credit products under $100,000 sold through its retail banking stores). Business owners who use the program will be connected with a credit specialist who will review the business’ credit profile, explain why the business was declined credit, and share resources that can help the business strengthen its credit profile and improve the likelihood of being approved for business credit in the future.

In addition, while the majority of business owners surveyed across all segments said they did not feel a perception of discrimination from a financial institution impacted their chances of obtaining business credit, 22 percent of African American and 11 percent of LGBT business owners reported that perceived discrimination impacted their chances of obtaining credit for their business, compared to 5 percent of the general small business owner population. The Credit Coaching initiative will be one way Wells Fargo will further increase transparency of credit decisions and facilitate conversations that build trust with all customers.

“We take pride in the fact that diversity and inclusion has long been one of our core values in every aspect of our business, and at every level of our organization,” said Stevens. “We want to make sure all customers feel welcome, respected, understood, valued and appreciated. The actions we’re introducing today are the next steps for Wells Fargo to better serve and connect with diverse-segment business owners.”

Community Development Financial Institutions Investments, Grants

Another key finding in the Gallup study is that African American, Asian and Hispanic small business owners are more likely to be in the start-up and growing stages of their business, compared to the small business population in general, and as a result may not qualify for many conventional bank loan products. In addition, 49 percent of African American-, 47 percent of women- and 45 percent of LGBT-owned businesses in the survey reported annual business revenue of less than $50,000, compared to 36 percent of small business owners in general.

To help newer, smaller and start-up businesses access the appropriate business financing and support they need, Wells Fargo will extend $50 million in investments and $25 million in grants to organizations called Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) that serve small businesses and entrepreneurs. The investments and grants will be directed to CDFIs that help small businesses get started and established by providing flexible capital and technical assistance. Wells Fargo will work with existing and new CDFI customers in diverse communities across the country to deploy this capital and measure its impact.

“We know that in order to address the range of financial needs within all of our communities, we need to support and work with the ecosystem of organizations that serve small businesses,” said Jon Campbell, executive vice president, government and community relations for Wells Fargo. “Through this increased investment and connections with community lending organizations, we are making meaningful strides toward increasing access to capital for small businesses, as well as helping more business owners get the coaching and educational resources they need to succeed financially long-term.”

Nationwide Referral Network

In the Gallup study, more African American, Asian and Hispanic business owners reported they were unable to obtain all the credit they needed in the past year than the general business owner population, yet the majority of small business owners in all diverse segments said they did not need credit in the last year. At the same time, nearly one in four African American, Hispanic and Asian business owners plans to apply for credit in the next 12 months, higher than the general small business owner population planning to pursue credit (15 percent). Businesses in the startup and growing phases in general expressed more intentions to apply for new credit.

To ensure business owners are aware of and accessing the full range of financing options available to them, Wells Fargo recently established referral relationships with more than 20 nonprofits and other lenders in cities across the country that are participating in the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Community Advantage program. Participants in the SBA’s program specialize in providing hands-on guidance to small businesses and offering credit to qualifying businesses in underserved markets. Wells Fargo, the nation’s No. 1 SBA lender 7(a) in dollar volume for six consecutive years (U.S. SBA data, federal fiscal years 2009-2014), established these relationships with the intent of providing small business owners with an additional financing solution that may better meet their lending needs.

Chamber Training Institute

On the topic of business education, the Gallup study showed that African American, Asian and Hispanic business owners were more likely than business owners in the general population to be extremely or very interested in learning how to build a strong business credit application, choose a credit product, and develop a business plan. To meet this demand, Wells Fargo is supporting a Chamber Training Institute that trains leaders of diverse-segment chambers of commerce on key business and leadership topics for their members, such as how to access business credit and craft strong business plans. This cross-chamber initiative builds on Wells Fargo’s strong working relationships with chambers nationwide that specifically serve and represent African American, Hispanic, Asian American and LGBT business owner interests.

“There’s no single answer to the challenges reflected in the study, just as the challenges facing all diverse-owned businesses are broader than any one financial institution can address,” Stevens said. “As America’s leading small business lender, we have a responsibility to do more. We believe the steps we’re taking will make a difference, help us foster more lifelong relationships, and move us closer to our goal of helping every business we serve succeed financially. We want to contribute to a national conversation, involving the public and private sector, industry stakeholders and small business owners, about how to better support small businesses in every community.”

Additional Gallup study findings

Other key findings in Gallup’s industry study included:

  • Only about half of small business owners say they have ever borrowed money for their business, including the general population of small business owners (50 percent), Asian (53 percent) and Hispanic (51 percent) segments, while the percentage of African American business owners who have used credit (42 percent) is somewhat lower.
  • African American (21 percent) and Hispanic (18 percent) business owners were more likely than their counterparts in the general population (10 percent) to be in the startup phase.
  • Nearly half of Asian-owned business owners (49 percent) said they were in the growing phase of their business, a higher percentage than the general population of small business owners (37 percent). Also, 38 percent of Asian-owned businesses reported annual revenue of $250,000 or more, compared to 22 percent of businesses overall.
  • A higher proportion of veteran-owned businesses (24 percent) reported being in the winding down phase – preparing to retire, sell or transition their businesses – than small business owners in general (15 percent).
  • Just 9 percent of women business owners reported plans to apply for new credit in the next 12 months, compared with 20 percent of men surveyed.

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Seedrs Equity Crowdfunding Site Raises over £4.5 Million for Assetz Capital, Trillion Fund, Landbay, CrowdLords, PledgeSports and CrowdCanDo

29 Apr

P2P lending and equity crowdfunding campaigns rapidly gaining investors with “equity crowdfunding done right” approach

 By Robert Hoskins

London, United Kingdom – Seedrs, one of the largest crowdfunding firms in Europe focuses solely on equity investments, announced that peer-to-peer lender Assetz Capital has raised £3,179,750 from 731 investors through the Seedrs platform, the second largest campaign hosted by Seedrs to date.

Seedrs makes it simple to buy into the businesses you believe in and share in their success

Seedrs makes it simple to buy into the businesses you believe in and share in their success

This raise has cemented Seedrs’s position as “crowdfunder to the professionals.” Assetz Capital followed a number of successful campaigns:

  • LandBay, the P2P lending platform for buy-to-let property, raised £569,044 across several fundraising rounds through Seedrs in late 2013 and 2014. LandBay has since gone on to raise a venture capital round from Omni Partners.
  • Trillion Fund, a leading solar, renewable energy and environmental social crowdfunding platform, raised £536,800 through Seedrs in December 2014.
  • CrowdLords, a property crowdfunding platform, raised £150,000 through Seedrs in November 2014
  • PledgeSports, an Irish sport crowdfunding platform, raised €100,000 (£72,000) through Seedrs in April 2015
  • CrowdCanDo, a events crowdfunding platform, raised £22,000 through Seedrs in September 2013

All of these crowdfunding and peer-to-peer  platforms focus on asset classes other than equity, so when raising capital for themselves, they wanted to work with the leader in the equity crowdfunding space,”Jeff Lynn, CEO and Co-Founder of Seedrs. “They chose Seedrs because they understand the importance to them and to their investors of our  ‘equity crowdfunding done properly’ approach.”

The Assetz Capital fundraising, which smashed its initial target of £2 million, was the second largest campaign hosted by Seedrs to date. The largest—which holds the record for the largest equity crowdfunding campaign ever in Europe—was Chapel Down Group’s £3.9 million fundraising through Seedrs in September 2014.

Lynn continued, “We’re proud to have enabled equity crowdfunding and peer-to-peer companies to raise money successfully.  Our peers recognize that our approach, based on simplicity and transparency, consistently delivers results. It’s equity crowdfunding done properly.”

“We chose Seedrs for our crowdfunding round because we know it to be the most professional and respected platform in the equity space,” said Stuart Law, Assetz Capital’s CEO. “Its size and reach were important factors, but so was its focus on helping investee companies grow while protecting investor rights. We were thrilled with the outcome of our campaign and fully understand why Seedrs is the equity platform that other crowdfunding and peer-to-peer lending platforms choose.”

The UK alternative finance market is predicted to grow to £4.4 billion in 2015 up from £1.7 billion in 2014 as businesses increasingly look to source more efficient ways to raise capital.

Between 2012 and 2014 the equity crowdfunding sector alone grew by 410%.  Against this backdrop, in the past three years Seedrs has become the most successful equity crowdfunder in Europe, funding 110 deals in 2014.

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Crowdfunding Site, OurCrowd.com, Shows the World that the Equity Crowdfunding Industry is Sailing into the Global Economy Full Steam Ahead

17 Feb

OurCrowd evolves from participating in early seed rounds to a leadership position by successfully pooling tens of millions of dollars from top tier venture capital firms

By Robert Hoskins

Jerusalem, Israel – OurCrowd leads equity crowdfunding deal that reels in $16M in Series E funding round for Borro.com, the UK-NY based, asset-backed online lender. OurCrowd was joined by Rocket Internet AG (RKET), Canaan Partners and Augmentum Capital in this funding round.

OurCrowd alone raised $6M of the capital invested, making this the single largest equity crowdfunding round ever completed and demonstrates how equity crowdfunding can complement and even lead traditional funding sources, such as venture capital.

“In under two years, OurCrowd went from participating in early seed rounds to now successfully  leading a $16M dollar major funding round together with top tier venture capital firms such as Canaan and the renowned internet company, Rocket,” said Jon Medved, OurCrowd’s CEO. “We are delighted to be investing in quality companies like Borro, which is redefining the Fintech industry.”

Launched in the UK in 2009 and in the US in 2012, Borro has defined a new category of online personal asset-based lending. Borro focuses on providing liquidity to individuals, entrepreneurs, and business owners who use luxury personal assets such as watches, jewelry, supercars, fine art, antiques and high-end handbags as collateral for short term loans.

“Seven years ago, I joined the first angel investor group at Lending Club (LC) and witnessed first-hand the exponential growth of online lending,” Medved added.  “Lending Club’s IPO in December of 2014 was a pivotal point in the online lending industry and has shown that there will be multiple winners with eventual multi-billion dollar market caps. ”

Paul Aitken, CEO and Founder of Borro, said: “We are delighted with our collaboration with OurCrowd. Their ability to lead this important funding round has proven that equity crowdfunding has indeed come of age. I was excited by the quality of the investors they have brought to the table and am looking forward to their adding additional value to Borro as we move forward.”

Borro was recently ranked #8 right behind Lending Club (NYSE: LC) #6 and OnDeck #7 (NYSE: ONDK) in KPMG’s 50 Best Fintech Innovators Report. OurCrowd ranked #22 on the list.  Borro is backed by a consortium of high caliber VC investors with significant expertise in online finance.

Investing alongside OurCrowd is Rocket Internet AG, a German internet company based in Berlin that builds online startups and owns share of various internet companies including Foodpanda/Hellofood, Home24, Jabong, Jumia and Lamoda.  Other Borro investors include Canaan Partners (investor in Lending Club) and Augmentum Capital (investor in the UK’s top lending marketplace, Zopa). Borro has recruited notable financial industry veterans to its board of directors who bring a significant amount of experience to the company, including Nigel Morris (co-founder Capital One) as Chairman and Paul Grattan (ex-CEO Egg, First Direct.)

Borro launched in 2009 in the UK, and has gone on to open offices in New York and Los Angeles.  It is the leading online platform for luxury asset-backed lending and has defined a new lending category in a climate where loans to individuals, SMEs and entrepreneurs were few and far between. Borro offers loans from $5,000 – $2,000,000 secured against luxury assets including fine art, antiques, jewelry, luxury watches, fine wine, prestige and classic cars and other high-value assets. Borro investors include: Canaan Partners (Lending Club), Eden Ventures, Augmentum Capital. Borro’s board of directors includes Nigel Morris (co-founder Capital One) as Chairman, and Paul Gratton (ex-CEO Egg, First Direct).

OurCrowd is the leading hybrid venture capital equity crowdfunding platform for accredited investors who wish to invest in Israeli and global early stage companies. Managed by a team of well-known investment professionals and led by serial entrepreneur Jon Medved, OurCrowd selects opportunities, invests its own capital and brings these startups to its accredited membership. Members choose those deals they invest in via OurCrowd-managed partnerships.

OurCrowd investors must meet stringent accreditation criteria and invest a minimum of $10,000 per deal. OurCrowd provides post investment support to its portfolio companies, assigning industry experts as mentors and taking board seats. OurCrowd has raised over $100 million in equity crowdfunding for its 57 portfolio companies which include leading companies, such as: BillGuard, Consumer Physics (SCiO), BioCatch, Abe’s Market and ReWalk, OurCrowd’s first portfolio company to complete a successful IPO on the NASDAQ.

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WeCareCard Crowdfunding Credit Card Delivers a Simple, Seamless and Secure Way to Share the Wealth in Las Vegas

3 Nov

The cause-related fundraising site will offer a prepaid debit card to fundraisers to support them in times of hardships and celebrations

By Robert Hoskins

Las Vegas, Nevada – WeCareCard introduces the first-ever prepaid debit card tied to a crowdfunding platform. The first-of-its-kind patent pending technology will fulfill a crowdfunding campaign’s financial component by loading funds onto a WeCareCard Prepaid MasterCard rather than the traditional fulfillment method of check, bank account deposit or PayPal.

WeCareCard crowdfunding site delivers a simple, seamless and secure way to share stories of hardships or celebrations, connect networks and gather funds for those in need

WeCareCard crowdfunding site delivers a simple, seamless and secure way to share stories of hardships or celebrations, connect networks and gather funds for those in need

The idea of WeCareCard spurred from co-founders Jessica Weiss, a former nurse who consistently witnessed first-hand financial hardships caused by unexpected medical bills and Phillip Qualls, a Technology, Payments and Financial Services executive with more than 20 years of experience in the industry.

“I saw an opportunity to leverage my experience to revolutionize relational giving and gifting by leveraging crowdfunding, prepaid and patent pending technology. Announcing the card at the world’s premier destination for emerging payments and financial services organizations, made perfect sense.” said Qualls.

The Indiana-based cause-related crowdfunding site delivers a simple, seamless and secure way to share stories of hardships or celebrations, connect networks and gather funds for those in need. The WeCareCard Prepaid MasterCard serves as the money- management tool, welcomed at over 25 million MasterCard locations worldwide. The card will be delivered to fundraisers early in their WeCareCard crowdfunding campaign and funds will be loaded throughout the duration of the campaign, helping fundraisers manage the expenses related to their cause directly, quickly and easily.

“After our family suffered hardships associated with long-term illness, I began contemplating how I could help others through similar situations,” said Weiss. “I knew there had to be a simple, streamlined way to help more people locally, and nationally through an online platform and prepaid debit card.

WeCareCard has retained Atlanta-based FirstView Financial as their card processor and program manager. FirstView excels at innovation in the high-growth prepaid card and mobile payments arenas. Metropolitan Commercial Bank (New York, NY) will be the issuer of the WeCareCard Prepaid MasterCard.

We are very excited to be working with WeCareCard on this new crowdfunding and prepaid solution,” said Jerry Uffner, CEO of FirstView Financial. “This new platform will help serve a very large audience. There are so many people in need of immediate financial relief and we are just happy to be a part of the initiative that will help remove that burden as quickly as possible.”

Individuals and organizations interested in receiving funding through WeCareCard’s platform can click here to apply for consideration.

WeCareCard is the first-ever online fundraising platform tied to a prepaid debit card that empowers people from around the nation to raise funds for a variety of life-changing causes. The cause-related fundraising solution delivers a simple, seamless and secure way to share stories, connect networks and gather immediate funds for those in need through the WeCareCard Prepaid MasterCard. This prepaid card serves as a money management tool and is welcomed at over 25 million MasterCard locations worldwide.

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Finance-Technology Company Receives $2 Million Crowdlending Loan from Denver-Based P2Binvestor

11 Jul

New Peer-to-Business lender pools investment from more than 350 accredited investors to provide receivables-based, no equity loss loans for businesses

By Robert Hoskins

Denver, CO – Representing one of the largest single crowdlending transactions ever, P2Binvestor (P2Bi) announced that the crowdlender provided a $2 million line of credit to a Boulder-based Finance-Technology (Fin-Tech) client.  This credit line adds to P2Bi’s rapid growth and puts the young company on a run rate to achieve a lending portfolio of $25 million by the end of its fiscal year.

New Peer-to-Business lender pools investment from more than 350 accredited investors to provide receivables-based, no equity loss loans for businesses

New Peer-to-Business lender pools investment from more than 350 accredited investors to provide receivables-based, no equity loss loans for businesses

P2Bi is a crowdlending platform that provides working investment capital via three types of asset-based loans to small and midsize businesses:

  1. a receivables-purchase product;
  2. an asset-backed line of credit, and;
  3. a credit line secured by future contractual revenue.

“Our easy online application process, quick funding decisions, competitive rates, and crowdfunding model are what set us apart,” said Krista Morgan, P2Bi’s Co-founder and COO. “But at the end of the day, clients love doing business with us because we are genuinely interested in helping them grow. Securing growth capital shouldn’t be a cumbersome process. We make it easier for borrowers.”

The company and its crowd of accredited investors have the capacity to fund multi-million dollar credit lines, lend to companies in all 50 U.S. states, and work with businesses in various industries including technology, staffing, natural foods, manufacturing, and more.

P2Bi provides access to this pool of working capital for innovative, growing companies. It eliminates many of the barriers associated with traditional financing and the high costs associated with subprime commercial lending. The company uses technology and crowdfunding to lower its effective cost of capital to clients.

Established in 2012, P2Bi officially went to market in January 2014. To date, the company has originated financing to clients in six U.S. states in various industries that include technology, energy, staffing, natural foods, and construction.

P2Bi and its crowd of accredited investors provide businesses with flexible capital that can grow with them; line increases are available as clients need them. The company stands behind its financing by offering a rate guarantee that allows clients to transition, penalty free, to a credit line or term loan with another financial institution if they find a better interest rate.

“P2Binvestor’s funding is a long-term solution that also helps us tremendously in the short term as we aggressively scale our product. It allows us to defer an equity raise, which would have been otherwise unavoidable,” said a company spokesperson for P2Bi’s newest client and recipient of the $2 million credit line. The Boulder company asked not to be named as it prepares for its official public launch.

Both companies are alumni of Finovate, a prominent demo-based conference for innovative startups and established companies in the fields of Banking and  Fin-Tech. Finovate hosts a two-day showcase each spring and fall where leading Fin-Tech companies and startups present their technology business models.

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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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Registry of Accredited Investors’ Research Reports that General Solicitation Helped Raise $575 Million in 6 Months for Equity Investment Deals

10 Apr

Of 700 companies that filed Form D under the 506 (c) rule, 75% reported fund raising goals of under $10 million with almost 40% indicating offering amounts of $1.5 million or less

By Robert Hoskins

San Francisco, CA – On September 23, 2013, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) began accepting filings under Rule 506 (c), a new method of using general solicitation to raise capital for private businesses through accredited investors.  Many see this new rule as a precursor to Equity Crowdfunding, which will permit regulated internet based fund raising from both accredited and non-accredited investors through approved internet portals.

The Registry of Accredited Investors provides CPA designed verification of Accredited Investor status. Quick, Confidential & Secure

The Registry of Accredited Investors provides CPA designed verification of Accredited Investor status. Quick, Confidential & Secure

The Registry of Accredited Investors, a private company that provides verification services to accredited investors, reviewed of all the Rule 506 (c) filings filed through Form D – Notice of Exempt Offering of Securities with the Securities and Exchange Commission since the legislation went effective in late September 2013 through mid February 2014.

Michael Berg, CPA, President of the Registry, noted, “That operating companies using the new exemption had reported raising over $575 million in under 6 months. This horse got out of the gate quickly.  The 506 (c) exemption seems very popular with a wide variety of companies.”

Some other highlights noted in the study:

  • Over 700 companies have filed 506 (c) forms with the SEC.
  • California had the most filings with 139 with TexasNew York and Florida far behind.
  • The average reported age of Companies seeking investment was 2 years with a majority of reporting Companies less that one year old. 80% of filers had less than $1 million in annual revenue.
  • The main industries using the exemption were Banking and Financial Services, Technology, and Real Estate.
  • 75% of all filers reported fund raising goals of under $10 million with almost 40% indicating offering amounts of $1.5 million or less.
  • Women represented only 4% of the Chief Executive Officers identified in the filings.

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