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Financial Poise Announces “Equity Crowdfunding,” a Four-Part Webinar Series, Available On-Demand Now through West LegalEdcenter

23 Mar

Episode #1, entitled Title III, Regulation A+, and State Crowdfunding Regimes will feature Crowdcheck, CFX Markets, Crowdfunding Lawyers.net Riggs Davie in panel discussion moderated by Chris Cahill of Lowis & Gellen

By Robert Hoskins

Chicago, Illinois – The Financial Poise Webinar Series plans to explore the purchase of ownership shares in private companies via equity crowdfunding websites. “Crowdfunding” for this series refers both to investments made in this way by accredited investors – given greater scope by Title II of the 2012 JOBS Act – and those made by non-accredited investors under Title III of the JOBS Act.

Financial Poise Announces Equity Crowdfunding, a Four-Part Webinar Series, Available On-Demand Now through West LegalEdcenter

Financial Poise Announces Four-Part Webinar Series, Click Now => Available On-Demand

Episodes in the series address the modes of angel investing in a company during its early stages, the opportunities and perils of crowdfunding real estate investments, the money-raising entity’s perspective, and a close look at crowdfunding options under federal and state law.

The first episode of the Equity Crowdfunding series, Title III, Regulation A+, and State Crowdfunding Regimes, features Moderator Chris Cahill of Lowis & Gellen. He is joined by Jordan Fishfeld of CFX Markets, Andrew Stephenson of Crowdcheck, Amy Wan of CrowdfundingLawyers.net and Alex Davie of Riggs Davie.

“Crowdfunding” is an elastic term, covering general solicitation of accredited investors as well as equity investments in private companies available to all investors (Title III). Private companies within certain size limits may be able sell shares to all investors under Regulation A+. State crowdfunding laws may complicate the picture or afford more opportunities, or both. Panel discussions will look at a range of “crowdfunding” topics.

Each episode will be engaging, sometimes humorous, and filled with conversations designed to entertain as it teaches and will be of value even to seasoned crowdfunding professionals. And, each episode in the series is designed to be viewed independently of the other episodes, so that participants will enhance their knowledge of this area whether they attend one, some, or all of the episodes.

Future episodes of the series will include webinars discussing angel investing, real estate investing, and raising money for a start-up through equity crowdfunding. Each Financial Poise Webinar episode is delivered in plain English understandable to business owners and executives without much background in these areas.

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Robert Hoskins, a seasoned Front Page PR veteran provides more than twenty-five years of external communications, media relations, digital social media and SEO skills to Front Page PR’s crowdfunding PR and media relations service portfolio.
Robert Hoskins
(512) 627-6622
@Crowdfunding_PR


Mr. Robert Hoskins is a seasoned marketing veteran with a proven track record of helping entrepreneurs, startups, small businesses as well as Fortune 500 corporations launch successful marketing communications campaigns to gain market traction for a wide variety of products and services.
On a regular basis, Mr. Hoskins consults with crowdfunding campaign managers as well as crowdfunding sites, portals and platforms to deliver successful crowdfunding marketing campaigns.
Google search “Robert Hoskins Crowdfunding” to see why Mr. Hoskins is considered one of the industry’s foremost crowdfunding experts that has amassed a huge social media following, which is dedicated to supporting donation-, rewards- and equity-based crowdfunding campaigns.
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What New Title III Investors Should Be Trying to Learn Before Making Their First Crowdfunding Investment

4 May

Whether You Are One of the 188 Million New Non-Accredited Investors or a Small Startup or Existing Business that Wants to Learn More about Issuing a Title III or Title IV Reg. A+ Equity Crowdfunding Campaign You Should Read through All of the Information Below

By Robert Hoskins

Austin, Texas (May 2, 2016) – The best way to educate yourself on the Title III investment/investing marketplace is to perform a thorough competitive analysis on all of the Top Equity Crowdfunding Sites and/or the Top Reg. A+ Equity Crowdfunding Sites in the United States, the United Kingdom and Israel, which is where most of the top crowdfunding platforms are based.

A Crowdfunding Guide to Risks, Returns, Regulations, Funding Portals, Due Diligence, and Deal Terms

A Crowdfunding Guide to Risks, Returns, Regulations, Funding Portals, Due Diligence, and Deal Terms

Our Top 100 Crowdfunding Lists are based on website traffic, which should be a first step in determining how many eyes are being delivered by every site.  This will highlight how many crowdfunding campaigns are being launched as well as how many investors are visiting the equity crowdfunding site on a monthly basis.

There has been a great deal of content generated that covers that the Title III Equity Crowdfunding rules that will begin on May 16, 2016 so I will skip repeating the basic information. Up until the past 12-months not much has been written about how to evaluate the up an coming Title III equity crowdfunding deals.

So the purpose of this article is provide lots or relevant documentation that has been written by leading university legal departments and law firms that will soon be guiding investors and issuers through the process of issuing Title III and Title IV Reg. A+ equity crowdfunding securities.

Great Equity Crowdfunding Research Articles:

1. The Coming ‘Transformation’ in Private Capital Markets – This article provides a really good overview of the equity crowdfunding industry to date.


2. Duke Law School – The Social Network and the Crowdfund Act: Zuckerberg, Saverin, and Venture Capitalists’ Dilution of the Crowd – This provides really good a good overview of how to avoid stock holder dilution and making sure that early stockholders are included fair and justly in every exit strategy. It also provides examples of how Zuckerberg diluted one of his business partners right out of the Facebook fortune.

TABLE OF CONTENTS

    1. CROWDFUNDING OVERVIEW
      A. The Five Models of Crowdfunding
      B. Examples of Crowdfunding
      C. The Transformative Power of Crowdfunding
    2. POLITICAL INFLUENCES
      A. Securities-Law Prohibitions on Crowdfunding
      B. Democratic Push for Crowdfunding
      C. Crowdfunding under the JOBS Act
    3. THEORETICAL TENSIONS
      A. Paternalistic Impulses: The Rule 504 Lesson
      B. Securities Regulation: Disclosure vs. Merit Review
    4. VENTURE CAPITALIST ELITES AND THE MASSES
      A. Vertical and Horizontal Risks
      B. Downside and Upside Risks
      1. Financing Rounds, Exits, and Protecting Crowdfunders

a. Price-Based Anti-Dilution Protection
b. Shares-Based Anti-Dilution Protection
c. Tag-Along Rights
d. Preemptive Rights

5. QUALITATIVE PROTECTIONS FOR CROWDFUNDERS

A. Contractual Provisions
B. Venture Capital–Deal-Terms Disclosure Table
C. Congressional and Regulatory Action

CONCLUSION


3. Harvard Business Law Review – Equity Crowdfunding: The Real and the Illusory Exemption – This document has a good section that discusses investment syndicates and why novice investors should follow lead angel investors until they get the hang of assessing crowdfunding securities risk.

TABLE OF CONTENTS INTRODUCTION

I. BACKGROUND

A. An introduction to crowdfunding
B. The rationale for a new exemption
C. The legislative history of the retail crowdfunding exemption
D. The quiet compromise

II. TWO CROWDFUNDING EXEMPTIONS COMPARED

A. Affordability in small offerings
B. Access to potential investors
C. Investor protection
D. Summary and implications

III. AN INCENTIVES-BASED THEORY OF INVESTOR PROTECTION

A. The public theory and retail crowdfunding
B. The private theory and accredited crowdfunding
C. A theory to describe the spectrum

IV. ASSESSING POTENTIAL SEC ACTION

A. Pooled investments managed by a lead investor
B. Public company regulation
C. Verification
D. Liquidity risk
E. Integration and aggregation
F. Substantial compliance
G. The accredited investor definition

V. RECOMMENDATIONS

A. Strengthen accredited investor bargaining power
B. Encourage retail investors to piggyback
C. Harmonize the resale and substantial compliance rules
D. Generate empirical data and conduct a special study

CONCLUSION


4. David M. Freedman and Matthew R. Nutting – Equity Crowdfunding for Investors: A Guide to Risks, Returns, Regulations, Funding Portals, Due Diligence, and Deal Termswhich I have not read, but the following paragraph descriptions definitely look worth reading while learning the the Title III equity crowdfunding securities investment process.

Preface: The New Angel Investors

In 1977, Mike Markkula became the first angel investor in Apple Computer. His $80,000 stake in Apple grew into about $200 million when the company went public three years later. Few opportunities can generate personal wealth as profoundly as being a founder or early investor in a startup that achieves that sort of grand success. Before 2012, however, angel investing was strictly limited to wealthy and extremely well connected people. Thanks to Title III of the JOBS Act of 2012, tens of millions of average investors will, for the first time in several decades, have an opportunity to invest in growing startups and early-stage companies via equity crowdfunding portals. This book covers not only Title III crowdfunding, but Regulation D offering platforms and intrastate securities exemptions (in at least 18 states) as well.

Chapter 1: The Foundations of Online Crowdfunding

Internet crowdfunding gained traction around 2003, starting with rewards-based platforms like ArtistShare, Kickstarter, and Indiegogo. They were followed by donation-based platforms like GoFundMe. Securities (debt- and equity-based) offering platforms launched around 2011 in the United States. Equity offering platforms were still open to accredited investors only, however. The JOBS (Jumpstart Our Business Startups) Act of 2012 legalized a new form of equity crowdfunding for all investors regardless of income or net worth. This chapter clarifies the differences between the various kinds of crowdfunding and provides lessons for investors about risk, reward, fraud prevention, and the wisdom of the crowd.

Chapter 2: Equity Offerings under Reg. D

Starting in 2011 in the United States, startups and early-stage companies began offering securities to accredited investors through Web-based offering platforms, under Rule 506 of Regulation D. Issuers could raise an unlimited amount of equity capital via Reg D platforms. Title II of the JOBS Act of 2012 lifted the ban on general solicitation for offerings made under new Rule 506(c). We profile two pioneers in Reg D offering platforms: MicroVentures (focusing on tech startups) and CircleUp (focusing on earlystage consumer products and retail companies).

Chapter 3: Equity Crowdfunding for All Investors

Title III of the JOBS Act of 2012 created a legal framework for equity crowdfunding, whereby all investors (not just wealthy “accredited” investors) can buy securities issued by startups and early-stage companies. The regulations limit the amount of money investors can invest in equity crowdfunding offerings each year, based on their income and/or net worth.

Chapter 4: Intrastate Crowdfunding, Non-accredited Investors

At least a dozen states got a jumpstart on equity crowdfunding, using the “intrastate exemption” to initiate regulatory frameworks for in-state equity crowdfunding. Georgia was the first U.S. state in which an equity crowdfunding portal successfully funded a startup with participation of non-accredited investors.

Chapter 5: Deal Flow

What kinds of companies will offer equity shares on Title III crowdfunding portals? Will they really have high growth potential and be worth investing in? Will there be a big enough supply of offerings to meet the demand of tens of millions of new angel investors? In this chapter we forecast what kinds of companies— in terms of industry, development stage, growth potential, and other characteristics—will represent the most attractive Title III deals for all (including non-accredited) investors.

Chapter 6: Angel Investors

In depth, we discuss the benefits, returns, costs, and risks of investing in startups and early-stage companies via equity crowdfunding. The possibility of earning spectacular return on investment (even if not very likely) is one attraction of angel investing. We discuss how the emergence of equity crowdfunding creates a new class of angel investors, with some of the same motives and benefits as traditional angels but some new ones, too—especially social benefits.

Chapter 7:  How to Navigate through Title III Offerings

This chapter offers a glimpse behind the scenes of equity crowdfunding portals—how they are regulated, the difference between “funding portals” and broker-dealer platforms, how they decide whether to approve or reject issuers’ applications, how investors communicate with each other, and using an investor dashboard.

Chapter 8: How to Invest, Part 1: Portfolio Strategy

A three- to five-year plan for building an equity crowdfunding portfolio Investing in private securities, including Title III offerings, is one way to diversify your investment portfolio. This chapter helps you decide what percentage of your portfolio assets should be devoted to “non-correlated” alternative assets like Title III offerings; identify your primary motives for investing in startups and early-stage companies so you can narrow down the kinds of offerings that you consider; create an equity crowdfunding budget, pinpointing the amount of money that you can invest each year over three to five years; and build a diversified equity crowdfunding portfolio.

Chapter 9: How to Invest, Part 2: Identify Suitable Offerings

How narrow down your choice of Title III offerings, based on your selection criteria—the first of which is identifying your social, personal, and/or financial motivation for investing in startups and early-stage companies.

Chapter 10: Equity Crowdfunding Securities

Title III equity offerings are predominantly C corporation stock, limited liability company membership units, and convertible debt. This chapter covers the fundamentals of each of those securities (including both common and preferred stock), and their advantages and drawbacks for both issuers and investors.

Chapter 11: Deal Terms

We provide concise explanations of the terms of private securities deals, in four categories: economic terms (like price per share, minimum investment, fully diluted valuation, etc.); control terms (protective provisions, veto power, etc.); terms relating to liquidity events and future financing (liquidation preferences, anti-dilution provisions); and other terms (conversion rights, dividends, redemption rights, right of first refusal, etc.).

Chapter 12: How to Invest, Part 3: Due Diligence

How to research an issuer’s management team, financial reports, revenue projections, business strategy, regulatory compliance, and other key indicators. You have the option of conducting due diligence independently, relying on a sophisticated “lead investor,” hiring a professional adviser, and/or collaborating with members of the crowd through on-platform discussions and Q&A forums.

Chapter 13: How to Invest, Part 4: Funding and Post-funding

We talk about the on-platform investment transaction, your rights and obligations as a shareholder, and how to monitor and manage your equity crowdfunding portfolio.

Chapter 14: Liquidity and Secondary Markets

Equity crowdfunding securities are relatively illiquid, especially in the first 12 months that you hold the investment. Secondary markets will probably develop over the next few years to provide liquidity to Title III securities. We look back at how secondary markets developed for accredited investors in the past 10 years, and project how they might develop for all investors in the near future.


5. Charting a New Revolution in Equity Crowdfunding: The Rise of State Crowdfunding Regimes in the Response to the Inadequacy of the Title III JOBS Act – Good analysis of intrastate crowdfunding exemptions.

6. The Next British Invasion is Securities Crowdfunding: How Issuing Non-Registered Securities through the Crowd Can Succeed in the United States – Good analysis of equity crowdfunding in the U.K.

7. Breaking New Ground: The Americas Alternative Finance Benchmarking Report – Research report on peer to peer lending, another form of alternative finance.

# # #

Robert Hoskins, a seasoned Front Page PR veteran provides more than twenty-five years of external communications, media relations, digital social media and SEO skills to Front Page PR’s crowdfunding PR and media relations service portfolio.
(512) 627-6622
@Crowdfunding_PR


Mr. Hoskins is a seasoned marketing veteran with a proven track record of helping entrepreneurs, startups, small businesses as well as Fortune 500 corporations launch successful marketing communications campaigns to gain market traction for a wide variety of products and services.
Hoskins is one of the crowdfunding industry’s foremost crowdfunding advocates and has amassed a huge social media following that is dedicated to supporting donation-, rewards- and equity-based crowdfunding campaigns. Due to the overwhelming demand from the general public for crowdfunding information, he empowers entrepreneurs with some of the internet’s most affordable ($20) online crowdfunding training classes, which provide insight to startups around the world on a 24 x 7 basis.
Hoskins adamantly believes that the crowdfunding industry will empower everyone in the United States to rediscover the possibility of living the American dream with a little hard work, a great business idea and the dedication to researching, planning and launching a well-thought-out crowdfunding campaign. He consults on a regular basis with crowdfunding campaign managers as well as crowdfunding sites, portals and platforms to deliver successful crowdfunding marketing campaigns.

How University Technology Transfer Offices (TTOs) Can Speed Up Operations by Launching Rewards and Equity Crowdfunding Ecosystems

13 Mar

Utilizing Equity Crowdfunding to Facilitate Faster Technology Transfer for Colleges and Universities that Want to Promote Innovation and Entrepreneurship

By Robert Hoskins

Streamlining University Technology Transfers

Most major universities have a Technology Transfer Office (TTO) or Technology Licensing Office (TLO) that provides information via a technology licensing website that details policies, disclosure procedures and staff contact information. However, the bulk of educational sites in the United States focus much more on providing material to researchers within the university and to outside investors.

With a few exceptions, many of them provide little useful information to external audiences regarding how the college or university is doing at stimulating technology transfer and commercialization for technology being developed by the school’s R&D departments. 

Technology transfer is the process of transferring scientific findings from one organization to another for the purpose of further development and commercialization. The process typically includes:

  • Identifying new technologies
  • Protecting technologies through patents, copyrights and other IP
  • Forming development and commercialization strategies such as marketing and licensing to existing private sector companies or creating new startup companies based on the new technology

Equity Crowdfunding can help schools move away from the highly ineffective TTOs, which are notorious for their laborious processes and red tape that tend to put more technology in a dusty warehouse than into a real world business practice. There is a true need to move away from short-term licensing and royalty agreements utilized by most schools and migrate toward long-term equity investment strategy that can generate billions of dollars in revenue versus short-term millions.

Creating an Equity Crowdfunding Ecosystem is an excellent way to provide students, faculty, alumni and the local community with opportunities to begin investing in a college’s or university’s future.

According to an article entitled “Improving University Technology Transfer and Commercialization” by Darrell M. West, universities are only earning around $2.5 billion in licensing fees on a federal investment of approximately $90 billion per year. The article highlights why schools should consider policy and operational changes that would improve their disclosure and rate of return for all of their research and development projects for a wide variety of reasons.

Equity crowdfunding represents the best way to streamline the process of creating new businesses from within a university’s various colleges. Students need to enjoy a superior educational experience while actually going through the process of launching startup business ventures that can give them the power to steer their own career path and create immense circles of wealth for everyone involved.

Most top universities are now setting up Innovation Labs and Entrepreneurship Centers to achieve this goal, but they usually fall short when setting up effective business incubators that provide experienced mentors and accelerator programs that actually provide the millions of dollars needed in seed investment capital to get these startups up and running.  Equity crowdfunding is the best way to find startup funding without taking on too much risk for schools that need a jumpstart.

Learn more about crowdfunding:

 

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Want to setup a Equity Crowdfunding Ecosystem?

Please fill out this form to get started:

Utilizing Equity Crowdfunding Campaigns to Cross Pollinate College Education with the Opportunity to Launch Real World Startups and Conduct Equity Fundraising Campaigns

13 Mar

Providing students with a way to contribute their skills to a steady stream of equity crowdfunding campaigns is a great way to gain valuable industry experience and make money

By Robert Hoskins

Real World Benefits of Equity Crowdfunding Campaigns

Depending on the strength of their various colleges, equity crowdfunding programs can help universities begin to leverage the resources from each college and begin to cross pollinate equity crowdfunding campaigns by harnessing the strength of the entire student body.  

Providing students with a way to contribute their skills to a steady stream of equity crowdfunding campaigns would be a great way for them to gain valuable industry experience while earning a college degree.

Instead of working in non-paid internships performing menial tasks, students can invest their time and sweat equity in real world startups by helping startups work their way through the seed investment raising process.  Getting paid with equity shares versus the opportunity to add one line-item bullet point to their resume is a much more attractive option for students worried about paying off their college tuition.

By providing any of the following services below to crowdfunding campaigns, students would benefit from the opportunity to practice their intended field of study as well as enjoy the potential payoff by aggressively seeking risk, innovation and entrepreneurship opportunities.  As a part of the mentoring process students and faculty could setup a management consulting firm that specializes in equity crowdfunding campaigns. 

  • Research & Development
    • Recognition for discoveries made at the institution
    • Compliance with federal regulations
    • Attraction and retention of talented faculty
    • Attraction of corporate research sponsors
  • Business Administration
    • Accounting/Audits
    • Finance
    • Business Planning
    • Investor Relations
  • Computer Science
    • Ecommerce
    • Social Media
    • Programmers/Coders
  • Law School
    • Private Placement Memorandums
    • Intellectual Property Protection
    • Copyrights/Patents
    • Legal Contracts
    • Corporate Structures
    • Licensing revenue to support further research and education
    • Technology Transfer Offices
  • Mass Communications
    • Advertising
    • Film/Broadcast
    • Journalism
    • Marketing
    • Mass Communications
    • PR
    • Social Media

Learn more about crowdfunding:

 

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Think about launching an Equity Crowdfunding Site?

Please fill out this form to get started:

New Texas Equity Crowdfunding Investment Syndicate Created to Help Unaccredited Investors Learn How to Follow Successful Private Equity Investors

18 Jan

 Join the Texas Equity Crowdfunding Syndicate™ to Follow Experienced Private Equity and Seed Capital Investors that Are Investing in Private Placement Memorandums (PPMs) Being Offered to Unaccredited Investors by Top Texas Equity Crowdfunding Sites

By Robert Hoskins

Austin, Texas – If you are new to the world of equity crowdfunding, then one of the safest ways to invest in new Texas startups is to join the Texas Equity Crowdfunding Syndicate™, which is a large group of unaccredited investors that follow the lead of experienced, seasoned and accredited equity investors that have been investing in private equity and seed investment deals for many years with a higher than average track record.  Join our crowdfunding investment syndicate by filling out the form at the bottom of this page. 

Texas Equity Crowdfunding Investment Syndicate for Unaccredited Investors

Texas Equity Crowdfunding Investment Syndicate Allows Unaccredited Investors to Follow Professional Investors

The Texas Equity Crowdfunding Syndicate follows the most prestigious accelerators and incubators in Texas that continuously shop for, discover, and curate deals from the best startups, entrepreneurs and inventors that are seeking seed investments and venture capital.

For the past 80 years, private equity  investments have been solicited behind closed doors through registered broker/dealers that were only allowed to market private equity deals to a small pool of accredited investors.

But now that the SEC has lifted the ban on General Solicitation, equity crowdfunding sites can now market private equity investment opportunities to more than 8.7 million accredited investors in the United States.  

And for Texas-based startups and businesses, the Texas State Securities Board (TSSB) has now legalized equity crowdfunding, which allows more than 20,000,000 Texas residents 18 years or older to invest up to $5,000 per deal in as many companies per year as they want.  That means every Texas business now has the ability to tap into more than $100 billion of Texas venture capital by issuing offers on Texas crowdfunding portals.

To get started and learn how to become a micro venture capitalist, simply fill out the form below and detail what type of crowdfunding investments you are interested in exploring.  All contact information will be kept extremely confidential, but will allow us to help issuers on various Texas crowdfunding sites and portals to send you valuable PPM investment deals for your review on new equity, debt and convertible note offerings.

This information will be delivered via highly targeted, double opt-in newsletters that will only deliver information on the precise information requested.

Hint: Don’t invest in any industry that you don’t fully understand

At any time, investors can change their investment interest categories or delete their name completely from our general solicitation marketing database if they get bombarded by opportunities that do not meet their specific investment objectives.

 

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Equity Crowdfunding Service Providers (CSPs) Needed to Support the Growing Number of Texas Crowdfunding Portals (TCPs) and Texas Crowdfunding Issuers (TCIs)

4 Dec

Join the Texas Crowdfunding Network of securities attorneys, certified financial advisors, securities sales professionals, investment advisors, escrow agents, certified public accounts for Texas issuers

 By Robert Hoskins

Dallas, Texas – Front Page PR announced that the firm is seeking Equity Crowdfunding Service Providers to partner with in order to serve the growing number of Texas Equity Crowdfunding Portals and their Private Placement Memorandum (PPM) Issuers.

The firm is seeking to build an in-depth Texas Crowdfunding Network of securities lawyers, certified financial advisors, brokers, registered representatives, securities sales professionals, investment advisors, banking escrow agents and many other types of ancillary crowdfunding service providers that are authorized to operate within the guidelines of the Texas Intrastate Crowdfunding Exemption Rules.  Click here to join

Texas Crowdfunding Portals, Issuers and Service Providers

Texas Crowdfunding Portals, Issuers and Service Providers

“Per the Texas Intrastate Crowdfunding Exemption Rules, the top equity crowdfunding sites serving Texas are not allowed to provide any type of guidance or consulting services to their private placement issuers,” said Robert Hoskins, Front Page PR’s Director of Crowdfunding. “These service providers will be needed to help is setup corporate structures, write PPMs, select the most appropriate offering structures, establish accurate offering valuations, set up escrow accounts at Texas banks and ensure that offerings meet strict Texas and SEC securities laws.”

The goal of the Texas Crowdfunding Network is to build the beginning foundation for the brand new Texas crowdfunding industry. As with any new industry aligning the fragmented players and putting them into streamlined business directory where all the players can find each other is critical. This will allow TCI’s to find third-party CSPs that will help them put together their PPMs prior to registering their offering with a leading TCP.

The majority of TCPs are still in the process of filling out their Texas State Securities Board Registration forms. Once filed it will still take several weeks to be approved by the state. In the mean time portals are actively recruiting both accredited and unaccredited investors as well as PPM issuers.

Due to the fact that PPM issuers will need help putting together their financial paperwork and the legal rules that prevent portals for giving any guidance, there is a real need for a database of marketing, legal, securities, investment, investor relations, financial planners, document preparation and banking escrow professionals that issuers can turn to get their paperwork in order.

Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA)

To give newcomers some insight into the securities and investment industry, here are some FINRA definitions of the various players and their typical roles in the fundraising and investment process:

Brokers:

  • What they are:  While many people use the word broker generically to describe someone who handles stock transactions, the legal definition is somewhat different—and worth knowing. A broker-dealer is a person or company that is in the business of buying and selling securities—stocks, bonds, mutual funds, and certain other investment products—on behalf of its customers (as broker), for its own account (as dealer), or both. Individuals who work for broker-dealers—the sales personnel whom most people call brokers – are technically known as registered representatives.
  • What they offer:  Broker-dealers vary widely in the types of services they offer, falling generally into two categories—full-service and discount brokerage firms. Full-service firms typically charge more for each transaction, but they tend to have large research operations that representatives can tap into when making recommendations, can handle nearly any kind of financial transaction you want to make, and may offer investment planning or other services.Discount broker-dealer firms are usually cheaper, but you may have to research potential investments on your own—though the broker-dealer Web sites may have a lot of information you can use.Registered representatives are primarily securities salespeople and may also go by such generic titles as financial consultant, financial adviser, or investment consultant. The products they can sell you depend on the licenses they hold.For example, a representative who has passed the Series 6 exam can sell only mutual funds, variable annuities, and similar products, while the holder of a Series 7 license can sell a broader array of securities. When a registered representative suggests that you buy or sell a particular security, he or she must have reason to believe that the recommendation is suitable for you based on a host of factors, including your income, portfolio, and overall financial situation, your tolerance for risk, and your stated investment objectives.

Investment Advisers:

  • What they are:  An investment adviser is an individual or company who is paid for providing advice about securities to their clients. Although the terms sound similar, investment advisers are not the same as financial advisers and should not be confused. The term financial adviser is a generic term that usually refers to a broker (or, to use the technical term, a registered representative).By contrast, the term investment adviser is a legal term that refers to an individual or company that is registered as such with either the Securities and Exchange Commission or a state securities regulator. Common names for investment advisers include asset managers, investment counselors, investment managers, portfolio managers, and wealth managers. Investment adviser representatives are individuals who work for and give advice on behalf of registered investment advisers.
  • What they offer:  In addition to providing individually tailored investment advice, some investment advisers manage investment portfolios. Others may offer financial planning services or, if they are properly licensed, brokerage services (such as buying or selling stock or bonds)—or some combination of all these services.

Accountants:

  • What they are:  Accountants are trained to provide professional assistance to individuals and companies in areas including tax and financial planning, tax reporting, auditing, and management consulting.
  • What they offer:  A CPA can help you consider the tax implications of financial decisions you make and assist with other tax-related issues, such as preparing annual tax returns. Some CPAs are also certified by the AICPA as Personal Financial Specialists (PFSs), which means they have met AICPA’s education requirements for providing financial planning services, including assessing your overall financial situation, developing a budget, setting goals for saving and investing, and developing a plan for monitoring your progress and reaching your goals.

Lawyers:

  • What they are:  A lawyer is licensed to give legal advice to clients. Lawyers are trained to tell you about the legal impact one financial planning or investment decision might have on another—such as the tax implications of setting up a certain type of trust for your estate.
  • What they offer:  As with other professionals, the range of services lawyers can provide will vary greatly from individual to individual. For example, if one of your financial goals is leaving your assets to particular people or organizations, you will want to work with a lawyer who specializes in estate planning.

Financial Planners:

  • What they are:  Financial planners can come from a variety of backgrounds and offer a variety of services. They could be brokers or investment advisers, insurance agents or practicing accountants—or they have no financial credentials at all. Some will examine your entire financial picture and help you develop a detailed plan for achieving your financial goals. Others, however, will recommend only the products they sell, which may give you a limited range of choices.
  • What they offer:  The breadth and depth of services a financial planner offers will vary from provider to provider. Some create comprehensive plans that delve into every aspect of your financial life, including savings, investments, insurance, college savings, retirement, taxes and estate planning. Others have a more limited focus, such as insurance or securities. Some only prepare plans, while others also sell investments, insurance, or other products. If they sell products, their recommendations typically will correspond with the products or services they sell.For example, an insurance agent will tell you about insurance products (such as life insurance and annuities) but likely won’t discuss other investment choices (such as stocks, bonds or mutual funds). You’ll want to make certain you fully understand which areas of your financial life a particular planner can—and cannot—help with before you hire that person.

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Contact:
Robert Hoskins

Front Page PR
(512) 627-6622
@Crowdfunding_PR
@FrontPage_PR

New Rewards-Based Crowdfunding Site Showcases Plans to Serve Niche Market of American Veterans, Service Members, Law Enforcement and Outdoor Products and Services Vendors

12 Jul

The donation- and reward-based crowdfunding site caters to those that protect and serve the red, white and blue and funding community projects

 By Robert Hoskins

Heber City, Utah – TwistRate announced that the crowdfunding platform officially launched and is positioned to serve veterans, service members, law enforcement personnel, outdoor enthusiasts, and the extreme sports, fishing and hunting communities a dedicated place to come together online to fund the ideas, passions and dreams of their communities.

FrogFuel Protein by Frog Performance Launches Crowdfunding Campaign on TwistRate

FrogFuel Protein by Frog Performance Launches Crowdfunding Campaign on TwistRate

The donation- and reward-based crowdfunding site is truly unique, as it not only caters to those that protect and serve the red, white and blue, but brings communities together to fund passion projects and provides all of the tools for campaigners to accomplish their goals. TwistRate goes above and beyond typical fundraising sites’ services to offer intellectual property protections services, business plan writing, and full-service video productions and editing services, the cost of which can even be financed into approved campaigns.

Crowdfunding initiatives are expected to reach $93 billion in funds raised by 2025, with numerous platforms emerging to fill the needs of specific communities that often best understand the value their inventions are bringing to the market. TwistRate’s founders were inspired to create the platform particularly for veterans, who continue to suffer from higher unemployment rates than the general population, a figure expected to increase as more soldiers return home. TwistRate also helps those entrepreneurs and small business owners, who many traditional financial institutions have left behind, connect directly with their potential customers to raise funds.

Designed by Special Forces veterans to be “part social, part finance and all American,” TwistRate makes American dreams come true by connecting the dreamers with the dollars.

“What drew me to TwistRate was that it brought together the people who would actually understand and use my invention,” says Jeff Byers of Frog Fuel. “As a SEAL, I know how important teamwork is, and now, as an inventor, I’m getting the tools and resources I need to succeed, in a safe and secure environment, full of fellow vets and entrepreneurs. No big company would ever do this.”

“TwistRate’s goal is to make achieving the American Dream possible again,” says CEO Evan Hafer. “In the service and in my personal life, I have seen so many amazing inventors who produce innovations that will truly benefit their communities. It is time for these entrepreneurs to have an easy and secure way to connect with like-minded professionals who can help them create, launch, market and distribute their dreams.”

The site currently features campaigns from former SEALs, Marines and police officers, focusing on obstacle course-style races, performance and camping products, nonprofit organizations and more.

Headquartered in Utah, TwistRate was founded by Jeff Kirkham, who served for 27 years with the U.S. Army Special Forces, and Evan Hafer, who spent 14 years of his career serving as an infantryman and as a Green Beret Special Forces solider. Both of these men are inventors, athletes, entrepreneurs, teachers and avid outdoorsmen.

“We just wanted to create a special place for our community that gives its all, protecting and serving its country, its cities, its neighbors and its men and women in uniform,” says Kirkham. “TwistRate brings communities together to fund their own, build their own and make their own — all on their own. It is the American dream in action.”

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New Crowdfunding Consulting Site Aims to Take Hands-On Approach to Help Crowdfunding Campaign Managers Achieve Higher Success Rate

29 Apr

KarmaKrowd Invites the Crowdfunding Industry’s Best Business Development, Advertising, Email Marketing, PR  and Social Media Campaign Experts to Help Crowdfunders Put Together Leading-Edge Fundraising Campaigns

By Robert Hoskins

Chicago, IL  – KarmaKrowd.com, a leading rewards-based crowdfunding site, announced that it will be providing a full suite of crowdfunding consulting services for its fundraising campaign managers who are seeking a professional team of experts to help them plan successful crowdfunding campaigns. And campaign managers will work their way through a four-phase process to perfect their campaigns.

KarmaKrowd Building a Legal, Financial, and Marketing Crowdfunding Consulting Firm to Offer Crowdfunding Campaign Managers Better Chance for Success

KarmaKrowd Building a Legal, Financial, and Marketing Crowdfunding Consulting Firm to Offer Crowdfunding Campaign Managers Better Chance for Success

“Using a completely different strategy from other Crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter or Indiegogo, KarmaKrowd takes a robust approach to every campaign that launches on our site,” said Cindy Summerfield, KarmaKrowd’s CEO.  “We start by offering the best legal services possible to pursue an in-depth Intellectual Property (IP) protection strategy.  Once their IP is buttoned up, KarmaKrowd helps clients engage in a four-step campaign building process and provides a directory of professional manufacturing, distribution and fulfillment consultants who can help campaign managers build a streamlined business model.”

“Once campaign managers have a good business plan and crowdfunding profile in place, we allow them to Beta test it on our internal database of KarmaKrowd users to gather instant feedback from insiders. This interactive process allows all users to learn from each other and build a best practice consulting service from both paid Alpha and Pro Bono Beta professionals,” Summerfield continued.

KarmaKrowd’s four-step crowdfunding consulting process includes:

    1.  The Idea Phase is the first step which assesses the potential patentability of the client’s idea and whether or not the branding infringes on any existing trademarks that have been filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO).
    2. The Alpha Phase is the second step when a product/service idea is transformed into the beginning stage of a crowdfunding campaign. During this phase campaign managers have the option to browse through KarmaKrowd’s directory of business consultants to build a team of experts who can provide direction on how to shoot a great pitch video, how to write a persuasive crowdfunding profile and offer rewards/perks that offer the right calls-to-action to entice backers to support their campaign.In order to avoid a growing trend in crowdfunding campaigns of meeting funding goals, but failing to deliver the goods, Alpha Team consultants can help to ensure that campaign managers have a thorough understanding of their cost of goods as well as assist in the building of business plans, signing up a manufacturer, building distribution and fulfillment channels and planning integrated digital, multi-channel marketing campaigns.
    3. The Beta Phase is the third step once campaign managers think they are ready to launch their campaign live they move their campaign into the Beta Phase. This removes the veil of secrecy so that users can provide private comments and instant feedback to campaign managers to help them make last minute adjustments.
    4. KrowdReadyPhase is the final step when campaign managers signal they are ready to launch their campaign. The KarmaKrowd staff will help the campaign manager put on the finishing touches.


KarmaKrowd Business Services Directory

KarmaKrowd encourages advertising, business, competitive analysis, distribution, email marketing, film production, financial, fulfillment, manufacturing, manufacturer reps, public relations, and social media consultants to sign up for a free KarmaKrowd Business Listing.  Once vetted and approved Alpha Team consultants will be able to offer their expert, value-added crowdfunding business consulting services for a fee to campaign managers.

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Reward-Based Crowdfunding Seminar: Everything You Need for Success! – Presented by the NYC Crowdfunding Meetup Group in New York

24 Mar

Crowdfunding Subject Matter Experts Will Be Covering the “A-to-Zs” of Crowdfunding Strategies Including Important Case Studies, Research Strategies, Buzz Generation Techniques, Shooting Viral Pitch Videos as Well as How to Protect Intellectual Property

By Robert Hoskins

New York, NY – To meet the demand from entrepreneurs, startups, and small businesses, the NYC Crowdfunding Meetup Group will be hosting a special Crowdfunding Seminar on April 1, 2014 at 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm. The event will be held on the 60th floor of the Empire State Building in the 1800 Accountant Office, which is located at 350 5th Avenue, New York, NY 10118.

Lucy Norris is a British correspondent who is now based in NYC. She freelances at a variety of media outlets including Alleywire, Millennium Magazine, the TV show “On Deck With Lucy”

Lucy Norris is a British correspondent who is now based in NYC. She freelances at a variety of media outlets including Alleywire, Millennium Magazine, the TV show “On Deck With Lucy”

Alex Feldman, the event organizer, has assembled an excellent team of crowdfunding subject matter experts that will be sharing tips, tricks and strategies on how to research, plan, and launch successful Rewards-based Crowdfunding campaigns. The event will be videotaped by the Reality Crowd TV crew.

Featured Speakers:

  • 6:00 pm – 6:30 pm
    Registration
  • 6:30 pm – 6:40 pm
    Introduction to Reward-Based Crowdfunding Campaigns
    Alex Feldman, CEOCrowdsUnite
  • 6:40 pm – 6:50 pm
    Crowdfunding Case Study: How I raised over $22,000!
    Alicia HansenNYC Salt Founder & Photographer
  • 6:50 pm – 7:00 pm
    How to Research Existing Crowdfunding Projects
    Helen Donnelly, CMO, CrowdFunding4All
  • 7:00 pm – 7:10 pm
    How to Create a Successful Crowdfunding Campaign
    Brian Meece, CEO, RocketHub
  • 7:10 pm – 7:20 pm
    How to Make a Viral Crowdfunding Pitch Video
    Lucy Norris, Managing Editor, AlleyWire
  • 7:20 pm – 7:30 pm
    How to Create Buzz for Crowdfunding Campaigns
    Howard Sherman, President, CrowdFundBuzz
  • 7:40 pm – 8:30 pm
    Crowdfunding Question & Answer Session
  • 8:30 pm – 9:00 pm
    Social Mixer & Business Networking Event

Reservations:
Tickets are $50, but early birds who sign up before Wednesday, March 26th will receive a $20 discount. The event is open to the general public, but seating is limited, so sign up ASAP at: http://www.meetup.com/NYC-CrowdFunding-Networking/events/171128902/.

Media:
Reporters get in free, but need to RSVP prior to the event with Crowdfunding PR Campaigns by sending Press RSVP request in order to enter the Empire State Building and proceed to the 60th floor. Members of the press should email rhoskins@frontpagepr.com for more information.

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KarmaKrowd Protects Crowdfunder’s IP including Patents, Trademarks, Copyrights for Entrepreneurs, Inventors, Startups for Crowdfunding Campaigns

17 Mar

Registers Patents, Trademarks, Copyrights at USPTO for Entrepreneurs, Inventors, Startups via New Legal Services Crowdfunding Platform

The soon-to-be-launched crowdfunding platform is now accepting applications for 25 beta testers that want to receive zero-upfront-cost legal services in return for testing the new crowdfunding platform

Chicago, IL – KarmaKrowd, a new crowdfunding site that caters to inventors, startups and entrepreneurs that want to protect their intellectual property (IP) including patents, trademarks and copyrights before launching a crowdfunding campaign, officially announced its new beta testing program that will accept up to 25 applicants to help stress test the crowdfunding platform’s functionality.  All beta testers will be given zero upfront costs on legal services.

KarmaKrowd Protects Crowdfunder’s Intellectual Property (IP) by Filing Patents, Trademarks & Copyrights

KarmaKrowd Protects Crowdfunder’s Intellectual Property (IP) by Filing Patents, Trademarks & Copyrights

“Once KarmaKrowd goes live our team of seasoned team of legal experts will form corporations, conduct patent searches, and file provisional or design patents to safeguard our client’s intellectual property prior to conducting their crowdfunding campaign,” said Cindy Summerfield, KarmaKrowd’s Founder.  “We also will be protecting our clients by conducting trademark searches and registering trademark/copyright applications, and providing other legal documentation such as non-disclosure agreements to keep our clients and their ideas safe as possible.”

In addition to legal services, the platform will also differentiate itself by offering the crowdfunding industry’s first business directory of Crowdfunding Service Providers, including advertising, email marketing, profile copywriters, perks specialists, public relations, media relations, and marketing programs that will allow crowdfunding campaign managers instant access to marketing services to help them achieve a higher success rate than campaigns that launch on Kickstarter or Indiegogo.

KarmaKrowd’s unique value-added business proposition for inventors and brand owners is to give clients zero-cost upfront legal services for corporation formation, filing a provisional patent application and/or registering the appropriate trademarks/copyrights prior to launching a crowdfunding campaign.

No other crowdfunding platform offers any of these services to its users. KarmaKrowd provides this portfolio of very valuable legal services at no initial cost to the user by recouping its legal expenses via commission fees collected on the backend of fundraising campaigns.

Upon successful beta test performance, KarmaKrowd will open its doors with 25 crowdfunding campaigns sometime in March 2014.

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