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Tag Archives: Jim Dowd

EquityNet Unveils First General Solicitation Equity Crowdfunding Investment Deal Distribution Network

18 Feb

EquityNet Teams Up with MarketWatch, CrowdWatch to begin Broadcasting Equity Investment Deals Where Accredited Investors Can Invest Online through Crowdfunding Platforms such as SeedInvest and RealtyShares

By Robert Hoskins

 More than 4,500 broker dealers now have the legal right to market equity investment deals via advertising, marketing, PR and social media now that the SEC has lifted the 80-year ban on General Solicitation.   And while most broker dealers have not taken advantage of the new law, EquityNet has now taken the lead by announcing the launch of a new equity investment deal distribution network with Dow Jones MarketWatch via Crowdnetic and with North Capital Private Securities.

Through partnerships with Crowdnetic and North Capital, businesses can now use EquityNet to showcase their private offerings on MarketWatch, CrowdWatch, and other crowdfunding platforms such as  SeedInvest and RealtyShares, thereby gaining exposure to thousands of additional investors.

EquityNet Equity Crowdfunding Platform for Accredited Investors

EquityNet Equity Crowdfunding Platform for Accredited Investors

EquityNet founder and CEO, Judd Hollas, stated, “I am excited about our new partnerships with Crowdnetic and North Capital Private Securities.  Businesses using EquityNet now have the unparalleled ability to distribute their deals to large extendable networks featuring tens of thousands of visitors and potential investors.”

“As a leading provider of financial information and market data, we at MarketWatch are pleased to offer the first publicly available private offerings on a major financial media website” said Ian Rosen, Vice President and General Manager of MarketWatch.

According to Crowdnetic founder and CEO, Luan Cox, “EquityNet is a wonderful addition to our Private Offerings dashboard on MarketWatch and CrowdWatch and is bringing many new private offerings and quality businesses to MarketWatch, CrowdWatch, and our broader distribution network.”

In addition to deal distribution with MarketWatch and CrowdWatch, businesses using EquityNet can also tap into the placement capabilities of North Capital Private Securities, a registered broker-dealer and member of FINRA and SIPC, to distribute their private offerings to other crowdfunding platforms such as SeedInvest and RealtyShares.

“EquityNet has built a great technology platform that prepares entrepreneurs to access the capital markets and enables investors to research, compare, and benchmark private companies.  We are excited for the opportunity to offer North Capital’s distribution abilities to their customers,” said Jim Dowd, Managing Director of North Capital.  “We expect that our relationships with other platforms, angel networks, independent broker-dealers, investment advisors, and institutional investors will help many EquityNet customers secure the financing they need to grow their businesses.”

Privately-held businesses can use EquityNet’s new distribution network and patented technology to showcase their private offerings on MarketWatch and CrowdWatch with the click of a button and on other crowdfunding platforms through engagement of North Capital Private Securities.  Both of these distribution abilities are readily available to all businesses that sign up with EquityNet and create a free business profile.

According to industry research by Massolution and the World Bank, crowdfunding generated $5.1 billion in funding transactions in 2013 and will surpass $300 billion in funding transactions by 2025. Within the next year, Title III of the US JOBS Act is expected to go into effect, allowing non-accredited investors to invest in startups in exchange for equity.  Experts have estimated that crowdfunding could expand the population of potential investors from 2 million to over 50 million investors.

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Evisor Launches 99Funding Equity-based Crowdfunding Platform in California

20 Mar

By Robert Hoskins

Evisor Inc. launches 99Funding securities crowdfunding platform.  Crowdfunding is already changing the way that startups are funded, and securities crowdfunding is poised to revolutionize private investment markets, according to Craig Goos and Jim Dowd, Managing Directors.  The 99Funding platform offers a secure, transparent, and efficient marketplace for investment crowdfunding.

99Funding Equity Crowdfunding Platform Launches in California

99Funding Equity Crowdfunding Platform Launches in California

The Jumpstart Our Business Startups or JOBS Act signed into law by President Obama in April of 2012 created a new class of exempt private offering —the crowdfunding exemption — that will allow companies to raise up to $1 million through investments from retail investors.  Private offerings have generally been restricted to small numbers of accredited investors.  Investment crowdfunding for the general public is on hold for now, awaiting the promulgation of regulations by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).  So for the time being, only accredited investors will be allowed to invest through the 99Funding platform.

As Wall Street veterans, Goos and Dowd emphasize that investor protection is the predominant focus of the funding platform. “We have been working in regulated financial markets for over 20 years,” said Dowd.  “We are not surprised that developing crowdfunding rules is taking longer than industry participants had hoped because we understand the complexity of the issues the regulators are facing.  Selling securities is not like raising money through donations or product pre-sales. Investor protection has to be the primary issue for the SEC and FINRA, since fraud is always a risk in the securities business.”

The 99Funding platform has been securely engineered to mitigate risk for investors.  First, due diligence on the offerings is handled through a partnership with CrowdCheck, a company that provides transparency and investor protection for crowdfunding and online investments.  Second, each offering must be distributed by a registered broker-dealer, which will vet the issuer and the offering terms before listing.  This role will be handled by affiliate North Capital Private Securities Corporation, member FINRA and SIPC.  Third, BancBox Crowd provides secure payments and escrow services for all investors and issuers.  Investor cash balances and escrow accounts are FDIC-insured.  Finally, Continental Stock Transfer & Trust Company will provide stock transfer agency services to ensure that all transactions are efficiently processed and recorded.

“We have a great team of business partners, all of whom have invested significant time and energy towards development of the investment crowdfunding market,” said Dowd. “It is wonderful to be working with the team at 99Funding.  They have put a huge focus on investor protection and deal transparency, and it shows.  99Funding is showing the way forward for the industry and helping to assuage the concerns of those who are unsure about new investment vehicles,” said Brian Knight, Vice President of CrowdCheck.

“We are pleased to be a partner for the 99Funding platform.  Jim and Craig’s focus on investors is totally consistent with the finest in shareholder services,” said Steven Nelson, President and Chairman of Continental.  Sanj Goyle, CEO of BancBox Crowd said, “Our relationship with the 99Funding team has been very constructive.  We think of Jim and his team as key partners in this developing industry, and our collaboration has no doubt resulted in a more robust BancBox Crowd tool set.”

99Funding has also partnered with Crowdnetic, a leading provider of market data solutions and funding portal platform technology.  Luan Cox, the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Crowdnetic said, “99Funding was one of our early partners.  Coming from the traditional securities market, they were quick to recognize the value that Crowdnetic brings to the emerging crowdfunding market.”

99Funding is not the first private investment platform that Goos and Dowd have managed.  The two worked together at Bear Stearns to develop the HedgeSelect platform, one of the first open architecture platforms for hedge fund investing.  In 2008, Goos left to run the alternative investment business for UBS Wealth Management, and Dowd left to found North Capital.

Dowd notes, “We believe that crowdfunding will develop like other securities markets, with standardization of terms and eventually, syndication of deals among multiple platforms.  If the market evolves as we expect it to, the opportunity for investors and issuers will be huge.”

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