Tag Archives: Title II General Solicitation

Park Place Communities Tapping Residential Real Estate Equity Crowdfunding to Finance Affordable Homes

22 Mar

The Company purchases existing mobile homes, renovates them and then resells them to qualified buyers using five-year amortized mortgages

By Robert Hoskins

Jacksonville, FloridaPark Place Communities (PPC) is raising up to $1 million in capital from accredited investors under SEC. Reg. D with as little as $1,000 to finance new large-scale affordable home projects.  The residential real estate company purchases existing mobile homes with funds raised through crowdfunding, renovates them and then sells them to qualified buyers using five-year amortized mortgages. The first round of financing will be used to renovate more than 125 units.

Park Place Communities Tapping Commercial Real Estate Equity Crowdfunding to Finance Affordable Homes

Park Place Communities Tapping Real Estate Equity Crowdfunding to Finance Affordable Homes

“The home buyer makes monthly payments for five years at 12-percent interest,” said Andrew Lanoie, Park Place Communities’ CEO. “This allows home buyers to purchase the mobile home for about the same monthly cost as renting an apartment.”

PPC is currently raising money via IHT Realty’s Real Estate Crowdfunding Portal. The real estate crowdfunding site helps individual sponsors raise capital for their acquisitions and will be assisting PPC’s customers in securing funds as it looks to expand its operations by acquiring an additional 15,000 to 20,000 mobile homes over the next few years.

“There is a huge demand for affordable housing right now and there are not enough parks to fill that void,” Lanoie said. “Right now, there are roughly 50,000 affordable housing parks in the United States.”

As the U.S. population continues to increase, the need for affordable housing will continue to rise. It’s simple supply and demand. In 2013, there were close to 2.3 million births added to the U.S. population, but less than 1 million new homes were constructed.

And with housing costs projected to rise by 5.4 percent from July 2016 to July 2017 — according to a study by CoreLogic Home Price Index — mobile homes are becoming a practical alternative.

“As the wage gap in the United States widens, there has been a shift towards lower paying jobs, which leads to an increase in demand for affordable housing,” Lanoie said.

According to the most recent report by the Social Security Administration, 36 percent of U.S. wage earners make less than $20,000 per year and 50 percent earn less than $30,000 per year.

“With 10,000 Baby Boomers retiring every day, 47 percent of which don’t have any retirement savings,  affordable houses are their last opportunity of home ownership,” said Dan Summers, IHT Realty’s, CEO.

PPC currently owns 13 affordable housing parks in eight states with nearly 1,000 total home pads.

The company is building a $1 million mortgage pool to issue fixed-rate mortgages to buyers. It is offering a debt investment opportunity secured by a first lien, which is also backed by a corporate guarantee with a 10 percent interest rate paid to investors.

“Mobile home parks are one of the most stable and predictable investments during a recession and recovery and contrary to popular belief, mobile homes are not really mobile,” Lanoie said. “It costs over $3,000 for a resident to move their home out of a park, which is the reason 98-percent of mobile homes will remain in the same location.”

IHT Realty Crowdfunding LLC offers investors the opportunity to capitalize on the demand for affordable residential and multifamily real estate properties across Northeast Florida.

# # #

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.

What Equity Crowdfunding Campaign Types Are Best for Startups and Small Companies – Title III or Title IV, Reg A+ ?

3 Aug

A Quick Guide to Launching Title III vs. Title IV Equity Crowdfunding Campaigns

By Robert Hoskins

VerifyInvestor.com's Guide to JOBS Act Crowdfunding Options and Rules

VerifyInvestor.com’s Guide to JOBS Act Crowdfunding Options and Rules

Trying to Determine What Equity Crowdfunding Option is the Best Method of Fundraising to Fund Entrepreneurs and Startup Companies?

Here are some simple questions that you might ask yourself when planning a fundraising campaign to raise money in order to launch a new startup or expand an existing business:

  • Maximum Offering for Equity Crowdfunding

How much money do you want to raise? And what step of the crowdfunding escalator does your company currently reside?

  1. Donation Crowdfunding – For ideas or concepts, entrepreneurs should consider Donation Crowdfunding and try to raise $10,000 or less with the goal of putting together a business plan, developing a website and begin working on prototypes or service beta programs.
  2. Rewards Crowdfunding – Once a prototype and/or beta test program has been developed and is ready to be tested for marketplace acceptance, startups should consider using Rewards/Perks Crowdfunding and set a goal of raising $25,000 to $100,000, but should have a crowdfunding PR and social media marketing campaign designed to raise up to $1 million or more based on marketplace demand. This crowdfunding step should be targeted to raise enough money to pay for the first manufacturing production run or minimum viable product (MVP) and provide a sufficient marketing budget to continue selling the produce/service and gaining marketplace traction once the crowdfunding campaign concludes.
  3. Equity Crowdfunding – Depending on the marketplace success, the final step is using equity crowdfunding to raise sufficient capital to launch a business on a regional, national or international level. Similar to an Initial Public Offering, the company can offer investors convertible notes, debt, revenue sharing or equity shares via a Title II (Rule 506 and Rule 144A offering), Title III offering or Title IV offering, which each has its own set of rules briefly outlined in the chart above.  Title III is capped at $1 million every 12 months, Title IV is capped at $50 million every 12 months and Title II can raise unlimited funding with no time limit.
  4. Crowdfunding Escalator – This entire process is called a crowdfunding escalator by many in the crowdfunding industry, which is a step-by-step process that allows a creative ideas to work their way into becoming successful and thriving businesses via larger and larger crowdfunding campaigns as a company grows, matures and gains marketplace traction.
  • Investor Types for Equity Crowdfunding

Do you want to target 8.7 million sophisticated accredited investors or open the offering up to 188 million non-accredited, novice investors throughout the U.S. (and Canada)? 

  1. Accredited Investors – Only about 3% of the accredited investors are active investors in the United States because until 2013 it was illegal to use general solicitation to reach this target audience and most deals were channel through registered broker dealers. The key is to know how to reach these angel investors and venture capitalists with advertising, email marketing, publicity and targeted social media marketing.
  2. Non-Accredited Investors – The other 97% of the population falls into the novice investor category that is literally an untapped target audience because it has been illegal to market fundraising campaigns to this segment of the population since 1934.  Title III and Title IV crowdfunding are designed to educate this new class of investors, teach them how to vet deals and allow them to make the same type of early stage investment usually reserved for venture capitalists by carefully researching the Form C disclosure documents for Title III and Form 1-A disclosure documents for Title IV, Reg. A+ offerings. And now that marketing offerings to this audience is legal, success is only limited by a company’s marketing budget.
  • Method of Offerings for Equity Crowdfunding

Do you want to utilize a registered Title III crowdfunding portal or regular website combined with general solicitation (advertising/PR/social media)? 

  1. Title III/Advertising Offering Terms is Prohibited – In contrast to Rule 506(c) offerings, which permits general solicitation if certain conditions are satisfied, an eligible issuer or persons acting on its behalf cannot advertise, directly or indirectly, the terms of a crowdfunding offering.  However, an issuer can publish notices (for example, in newspapers or on social media sites or the issuer’s website) that direct investors to the intermediary’s platform and contain only limited factual information about the offering and the issuer.   Despite this advertising prohibition, an issuer (or persons acting on its behalf) may communicate with investors about the offering terms through communication channels provided on the intermediary’s platform if the issuer identifies itself (or persons acting on its behalf identify their affiliation with the issuer) in all such communications.
  2. Title IV Utilizing General Solicitation – Title IV offerings are allowed to use any website/portal combined with advertising, email marketing, PR and social media to market the terms of their offerings in order to attract new investors, which means investors throughout the entire United States and Canada.
VerifyInvestor.com's Guide to JOBS Act Crowdfunding Options and Rules - Page 2

VerifyInvestor.com’s Guide to JOBS Act Crowdfunding Options and Rules – Page 2

 

# # #

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. 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.
Mr. Hoskins consults on a regular basis with crowdfunding campaign managers as well as crowdfunding sites, portals and platforms to deliver successful crowdfunding marketing campaigns.
Mr. 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.

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.

Top 100 Crowdfunding Sites in the United States, Europe, Asia, South America, Africa and other Global Markets in 2016

1 May

Seeking the Top 100 Crowdfunding Sites
in the United States or the Rest of the World? See Our Updated 2016 Rankings!

Crowdfunding PR’s 2016 Top 100 Global Crowdfunding Sites

Crowdfunding PR’s 2016 Top 100 Global Crowdfunding Sites

 By Robert Hoskins

[Click Here to Tweet this Top 100 List to Your Business Colleagues]

United States – We have updated our List of the Top 100 Global Crowdfunding Sites for 2016 in the United States, Europe, Asia, South America, Africa and other global markets.  

Clicking on the website traffic ranking links below will take readers to one of the most insightful resources of information that details each website’s traffic ranking; the number of unique visitors per month; the average time spent on each site per visit; and the number of pages viewed per each visit.

Of more interest to crowdfunding campaign managers will be the precise ratio of social media, content marketing, search engine marketing, email marketing and display advertising that is being utilized by each crowdfunding site’s marketing campaigns to drive readers and investors to their crowdfunding profiles.

GoFundMe vs Kickstarter SimilarWeb Stats

GoFundMe vs Kickstarter SimilarWeb Stats

Even though these numbers reflect the aggregation of all of a given portal’s crowdfunding campaigns marketing efforts, they offer direct evidence of what is working and what is not.  Note the difference on how much social media and display advertising is being used by the Top 10 Crowdfunding Sites compared the lower 90 crowdfunding sites. 

This information can be used by crowdfunding sites as well as their crowdfunders to get a thorough understanding on how to plan future marketing campaigns that will have a higher than average success rate.

Want to know how Kickstarter has just retaken GoFundMe as the world’s #1 crowdfunding platform? Click on the Global Rank number links below and then use the comparison tool to show side-by-side comparisons of SEO keywords, link referrals, and social media usage. See the bottom of the page for more crowdfunding marketing tips.

[Click Here to Tweet this Top 100 List of Crowdfunding Sites]

  2016 Rank © Front Page PR   Global Rank
#1 (2015: #2) www.kickstarter.com        692
#2 (2015: #1) www.gofundme.com      1,805
#3 (2015: #4) www.indiegogo.com      2,126
#4 (2015: #3) www.angel.co      4,550
#5 (2015: #5) www.lendingclub.com      9,781
#6 (2015: #6) www.justgiving.com    10,950
#7 (2015: #9) www.ulule.com     15,943
#8 (2015: #7) www.youcaring.com     22,315
#9 (2015: #8) www.kiva.org     24,366
#10 (2015: #12) www.crowdrise.com      24,617
#11 (2015: #10) www.donorschoose.org      33,737
#12 (2015: #16) www.fundingcircle.com      37,717
#13 (2015: #11) www.pledgemusic.com     42,380
#14 (2015: #13) www.tilt.com      51,509
#15 (2015: #50) www.seedandspark.com     64,606
#16 (2015: #22) www.circleup.com     68,095
#17 (2015: #24) www.kickante.com.br     69,483
#18 (2015: #15) www.crowdcube.com     73,968
#19 (2015: new) www.seedrs.com     90,162
#20 (2015: #28) www.gogetfunding.com     97,023
#21 (2015: #29) www.fundrise.com    117,386
#22 (2015: #20) www.firstgiving.com     117,598
#23 (2015: #17) www.razoo.com    126,920
#24 (2015: #14) www.giveforward.com     126,939
#25 (2015: #38) www.seedinvest.com     135,275
#26 (2015: #18) www.fundly.com    140,609
#27 (2015: #27) www.zeczec.com     151,454
#28 (2015: #25) www.crowdfunder.com    158,984
#29 (2015: #23) www.fundable.com    185,100
#30 (2015: #19) www.pozible.com    189,422
#31 (2015: new) www.companisto.com    201,708
#32 (2015: new) www.wiseed.com    211,628
#33 (2015: #21) www.fundrazr.com    214,382
#34 (2015: #31) www.experiment.com    217,304
#35 (2015: #53) www.peerform.com    222,324
#36 (2015: #53) www.startengine.com    227,165
#37 (2015: new) www.seedmatch.de    227,277
#38 (2015: #86) www.bnktothefuture.com    279,553
#39 (2015: new) www.fundersclub.com    284,743
#40 (2015: #45) www.ourcrowd.com   286,808
#41 (2015: #26) www.equitynet.com   293,867
#42 (2015: new) www.syndicateroom.com   293,940
#43 (2015: #32) www.realtymogul.com   332,585
#44 (2015: #42) www.pledgie.com   351,524
#45 (2015: #39) www.slated.com   354,964
#46 (2015: #44) www.fundanything.com   361,785
#47 (2015: #40) www.patchofland.com   364,803
#48 (2015: #33) www.geldvoorelkaar.nl   367,546
#48 (2015: new) www.anaxago.com   392,914
#49 (2015: #48) www.ppl.com.pt   407,009
#50 (2015: #30) www.fundedbyme.com   410,994
#51 (2015: #41) www.givezooks.com   443,766
#52 (2015: #76) www.joinmosaic.com   472,517
#53 (2015: #43) www.microventures.com  504,408
#54 (2015: #new) www.invesdor.com  520,978
#55 (2015: #37) www.offbeatr.com   526,705
#56 (2015: #36) www.wefunder.com   586,450
#57 (2015: #57) www.plumfund.com   603,093
#58 (2015: #65) www.crowdstreet.com   616,566
#59 (2015: #49) www.dragoninnovation.com   635,079
#60 (2015: #52) www.opportunity.org   669,915
#61 (2015: #61) www.flashfunders.com   693,854
#62 (2015: #58) www.fundraise.com   744,583
#63 (2015: #46) www.pave.com    748,172
#64 (2015: #64) www.symbid.com   884,303
#65 (2015: #68) pitchfunder.asufoundation.org 1,072,918
#66 (2015: #34) www.onevest.com 1,098,541
#67 (2015: #66) www.assetavenue.com 1,124,447
#68 (2015: #69) www.artistshare.com 1,135,924
#69 (2015: #70) www.nextseed.com 1,138,179
#70 (2015: #63) www.piggybackr.com 1,162,479
#71 (2015: #62) www.trucrowd.com 1,246,018
#72 (2015: #60) www.barnraiser.us 1,288,466
#73 (2015: #54) www.bolstr.com 1,477,216
#74 (2015: #59) www.earlyshares.com 1,585,544
#75 (2015: #80) www.pledgecents.com 1,597,425
#76 (2015: #82) www.crowd2fund.com 1,776,210
#77 (2015: #47) www.growvc.com 1,791,220
#78 (2015: #87) www.acquirerealestate.com 1,989,566
#79 (2015: #71) www.appsfunder.com 2,649,175
#80 (2015: #78) www.dreamfunded.com 2,760,699
#81 (2015: #72) www.assob.com.au 2,767,540
#82 (2015: #90) www.massivemov.com 3,234,838
#83 (2015: #55) www.investx.com 3,486,195
#84 (2015: #75) www.faithlauncher.com 3,605,295
#85 (2015: #75) www.crudefunders.com 3,792,211
#86 (2015: #84) www.texasenetworks.com 3,923,796
#87 (2015: #51) www.pubslush.com 4,078,981
#88 (2015: #73) www.foodstart.com 4,358,969
#89 (2015: #56) www.uinvest.com.ua 4,483,866
#90 (2015: #79) www.propellr.com 4,516,046
#91 (2015: #85) www.icrowd.com 4,629,191
#92 (2015: #67) www.microgiving.com 4,757,890
#93 (2015: #81) www.massventure.com 5,544,974
#94 (2015: New) www.offerboard.com 5,968,517
#95 (2015: #99) www.cMEcompete.com 6,363,051
#96 (2015: #83) www.ipledg.com 6,460,243
#97 (2015: #93) www.funderhut.com 6,764,561
#98 (2015: #97) www.crowdfundingbank.com 7,068,480
#99 (2015: #77) www.crowdfundingpays.com 7,667,040
#100 (2015: #88) www.sterlingfunder.com 7,951,827

Source: Feb 2016 SimilarWeb Website Statistics

Crowdfunding PR’s goal is simple. We want to make it possible for crowdfunders to shop for  crowdfunding platforms in a similar manner to the way media planners/buyers used to analyze ABC and BPA audit statements to buy advertisements in the business-to-business trade publication industry, where important media buying decisions were based on straight mathematics, not popularity or random guessing.

For example, would you rather run a crowdfunding campaign on a site where visitors are looking at 2-3 pages in around 3 minute’s time or a site where buyers are spending 6 to 11 minutes reviewing 6 to 10 pages?

This is the difference between shoppers who are visiting a site to see a particular crowdfunding campaign based on a marketing campaign versus people who are visiting a site to explore and actually shop around to find good deals to buy or invest their money.

This is why launching a campaign on Kickstarter or GoFundMe does not guarantee success. While Kickstarter, GoFundMe or Indiegogo may be the largest sites in the world, people are only spending enough time to shop through more than 2 to 3 crowdfunding profiles before they exit. While other sites like Razoo.com, DonorsChoose.org, and FundingCircle.com have visitors that stay more than 6 to 11 minutes and view 6 to 10 pages.

When researching, planning and executing successful marketing programs for both crowdfunding platforms as well as their individual crowdfunding customer profiles, it is extremely important to see what is driving the most traffic to any given crowdfunding site.  Success is usually determined not only by what site the crowdfunding campaign is being hosted on, but also the marketing programs being harnessed to drive potential donors/investors to a specific crowdfunding profile.

Clicking on each link above will allow media planners/buyers to understand what role direct traffic (content marketing), search engines (SEO, PPC Advertising), social media (Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Reddit, Quora), email marketing and display advertising (Google Display, Outbrain, AppNexus) are having on the success of crowdfunding campaigns.

For example, when planning a social media strategy, one of the most popular questions we get asked is – what social media networks are driving the most visitor traffic? Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Quora, Reddit, YouTube, Pinterest, Instagram? The links above will make this answer crystal clear.

Not satisfied with your position on the list? Front Page PR’s team of crowdfunding PR, social media and marketing experts can help crowdfunding sites and crowdfunding campaigns plan the perfect mix of integrated marketing programs to significantly improve the amount of website traffic being driven to any given fundraising campaign or crowdfunding platform.

Feel free to call (512) 627-6622 with questions or request help to improve your website statistics before June.

More Top 100 Crowdfunding Site Lists:

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If you’d like to add your site to the Top 100 list, please fill out the form below.

Crowdfunding PR Seeks Equity-based and Rewards-based Crowdfunding Sites to Add to Its Top 100 Crowdfunding List

29 Apr

Add Your Site to Our 2016 Top 100 List

Do you know of a new crowdfunding site that has been launched in the last 12 to 24 months? If so, we want to know the company name and what URL we should review for our Top 100 Crowdfunding Sites list.

Either follow us on Twitter @Crowdfunding_PR or connect with us on Linkedin at https://www.linkedin.com/in/roberthoskins and then share the information you’d like to add to any of our lists.

Is your crowdfunding site listed?

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SEC’s Title III Equity Crowdfunding for Non-Accredited Investors

28 Oct
SEC to Approve Final Title III Rules for Equity Crowdfunding for Non-Accredited Investors

SEC to Approve Final Title III Rules for Equity Crowdfunding for Non-Accredited Investors

SEC’s Crowdfunding Title III Open Meeting:

The Securities and Exchange Commission will hold an Open Meeting on Friday, October 30, 2015 at 10:00 a.m., in the Auditorium, Room L-002.

SEC Title III Open Meeting Discussion Points:

Commission Stein, as duty officer, voted to consider the items listed for the Open Meeting in open session, and determined that Commission business required consideration earlier than one week from today.  No earlier notice of this Meeting was practicable.

View the Archived SEC’s Title III Crowdfunding Open Meeting Video:

https://www.sec.gov/news/openmeetings.shtml

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SEC Approves Regulation A+ Rules under Title IV of the JOBS Act that Pre-empts State Law and Paves the Way for Selling Up to $50 Million of Equity Crowdfunding Securities to Unaccredited Investors

25 Mar

There are no general solicitation restrictions so companies can freely advertise, market and publicize offerings at demo days, trade shows, mass media and via social media networks

 By Robert Hoskins

Washington, D.C. – The Securities and Exchange Commission adopted final rules unanimously to facilitate smaller companies’ access to capital.  The new rules provide investors with more investment choices.The new rules update and expand Title IV Regulation A+, an existing exemption from registration for smaller issuers of securities.

SEC Approves Regulation A+ Rules under Title IV of the JOBS Act

SEC Approves Regulation A+ Rules under Title IV of the JOBS Act

The rules are mandated by Title IV of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act.The updated exemption will enable smaller companies to offer and sell up to $50 million of securities in a 12-month period, subject to eligibility, disclosure and reporting requirements.

“These new rules provide an effective, workable path to raising capital that also provides strong investor protections,” said SEC Chair Mary Jo White.  “It is important for the Commission to continue to look for ways that our rules can facilitate capital-raising by smaller companies.”

The final rules, often referred to as Regulation A+, provide for two tiers of equity crowdfunding securities offerings:

  • Tier 1:  Offerings of securities of up to $20 million in a 12-month period, with not more than $6 million in offers by selling security-holders that are affiliates of the issuer; and
  • Tier 2: Offerings of securities of up to $50 million in a 12-month period, with not more than $15 million in offers by selling security-holders that are affiliates of the issuer.

Both Tiers are subject to certain basic requirements while Tier 2 offerings are also subject to additional disclosure and ongoing reporting requirements.

The final rules also provide for the preemption of state securities law registration and qualification requirements for securities offered or sold to “qualified purchasers” in Tier 2 offerings.

Tier 1 offerings will be subject to federal and state registration and qualification requirements, and issuers may take advantage of the coordinated review program developed by the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA).

The rules will be effective 60 days after publication in the Federal Register.

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Setting Up a New College – University Equity Investment Crowdfunding Site to Take Advantage of the Growing U.S. Investor Network Suffering from a Lack of Deal Flow

14 Mar

Schools that Launch Equity Crowdfunding Sites Now Will Learn How to Market Investment Opportunities to Accredited Investors and Get a Head Start on the Vast Amount of Money that Will Flood the U.S. when the SEC Finally Approves Title III Crowdfunding Guidelines

By Robert Hoskins

Investor Surplus, Deal Flow Shortage

Believe it or not, there is a growing surplus of angel investors, accredited investors and venture capitalists that have the money to invest in new startups, but cannot find enough good deals being circulated by entrepreneurs and startups that need investment startup capital.  

A recent member of the San Francisco Angel Group member recently said that there many startups in San Francisco currently receiving seed investment that really are not worthy of seed investment capital, but are getting lucky because there is a surplus of money and a shortage of good deals. 

The good news is that college and universities can now take advantage of a new rule passed as a part of the JOBS Act, which approved something known as General Solicitation. For the past 80 years it has been illegal to advertise or market private equity deals to the general public, but that ban has been lifted. 

In November 2014, a new SEC rule was passed that makes it possible to advertise private placement memorandums (PPMs) to approximately 8.7 million accredited investors throughout the United States and abroad.  This is great news because only about 3% of all accredited investors are active angel investors. This means that 97%  of this group has never been approached by startups seeking investment capital. 

This means that any school can setup an equity crowdfunding platform and start marketing their local community’s entrepreneur and startup business plans to a nationwide or global network of accredited investors.  Once a platform is setup, investors with the right credentials can search through the platform’s online equity investment opportunities on a 24x 7 basis.

And then, hopefully in October 2015, the SEC also will pass the final rules that open up Title III equity crowdfunding to every adult in the United States who is 18 years or older. When that happens, the same equity crowdfunding site will have the ability market deals to every adult in America or approximately 180 million new investors.  Take that with a grain of salt because the new Title III rules are three years overdue, but if they do make it to the Federal Registry there will be flood of money seeking great business plans and startups who need startup capital.

In order to leverage the growing pool of accredited investors now, colleges and universities should begin the process of setting up a streamlined equity crowdfunding ecosystem as soon as possible. It will open up schools to a nationwide and/or global network of angel investors now and help them get a head start on the vast amount of money that will flood the marketplace when the SEC finally approves the Title III crowdfunding guidelines.

Learn more about crowdfunding:

 

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Want to learn more about setting up an equity crowdfunding platform?

Please fill out this form to get start:

What is Crowdfunding?

14 Mar

Crowdfunding sites and platforms are a great way for Universities and Colleges to generate extra revenue and market their school’s brand name on a global basis

By Robert Hoskins

What is Crowdfunding?

Crowdfunding is not a new concept. It has been used for thousands of years to collect small sums of money from the masses to pay for some of the most well known works in the world such as the Statue of Liberty.

The JOBS Act made it legal to use e-commerce sites to build crowdfunding profiles to collect money online from investors and utilize general solicitation  (advertising/marketing/PR) to raise money from the masses for the first time in 80 years. Funding that can be used provide seed investment capital to startups and help existing businesses expand their operations.

What States Have Legalized Equity Crowdfunding?

At the federal level, the final Title III equity crowdfunding rules guidelines have been stalled by the SEC, but at the state level Texas, Michigan, Georgia and 13 other states have passed Intrastate Crowdfunding Exemption rules that allow startups and businesses to raise money by selling equity shares online to raise seed investment capital. Other large states including CaliforniaIllinois, and Pennsylvania have proposed legislation, which is working its way through the legislative process.

Map of U.S. States that approved Intrastate Equity Crowdfunding Exemptions

Map of U.S. States that have approved Intrastate Equity Crowdfunding Exemptions

                                                Source: CrowdfundingLegalHub.com

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Cutting Edge Capital Equity Crowdfunding Platform Partners with Mercury360 to Offer its Direct Public Offerings Full-Service Marketing Support

2 Dec

New alliance between Cutting Edge Capital and Mercury360 delivers marketing expertise to small and medium sized businesses looking to raise capital through Direct Public Offerings (DPOs)

 By Robert Hoskins

San Francisco, CA – Cutting Edge Capital (CEC) and Mercury360 announced a partnership allowing CEC to offer its clients full service marketing support provided by Mercury360. With this partnership, CEC will not only provide all types of assistance for clients to achieve approval for a DPO but also help clients reach the right investors in California, New York, Massachusetts and other states marketing services.

Cutting Edge Capital Equity Crowdfunding Platform

Cutting Edge Capital Equity Crowdfunding Platform

After working with many clients on strategy and compliance for DPOs, CEC recognized a significant challenge that small and mid-sized businesses (SMBs) face: the ability to market and attract investors to their offering. CEC realized that in order for many of their clients to be successful, they would need to be supported by strong marketing acumen to help attract investors and successfully complete their DPOs.

In searching for a marketing partner, CEC solicited and received numerous proposals from marketing agencies nationwide. CEC selected Mercury360 based on the agency’s strong understanding of the fundraising process and experience meeting the needs of SMBs in a wide spectrum of industries.

“Our clients are successfully executing in many different aspects of their business. By providing marketing expertise through Mercury360, we’re lessening the strain that raising capital puts on small businesses, helping to ensure they can meet their objectives,” said Jenny Kassan, CEO of Cutting Edge Capital.

“We are delighted to be partnering with Cutting Edge Capital and its extraordinary list of clients,” said Ren Bloom, CEO of Mercury360. “It’s exciting to be working with so many pioneering firms and helping them achieve their capital raising goals through our marketing services and expertise,” continued Mr. Bloom.

SMBs have limited avenues to raise money to start, run and grow their business. DPOs allow a business or nonprofit to market and advertise its offerings publicly and to anyone, by any means it chooses. This opens up a whole new world to SMBs. CEC, along with its sister law firm, Cutting Edge Counsel Inc., is helping SMBs and nonprofits successfully meet their financing goals by providing assistance with the structuring, compliance and other aspects of a DPO. Crowdfunding in general, and DPOs in specific, open up new avenues for businesses to raise much-needed funds.

Both organizations are taking immediate steps to coordinate their efforts, including reaching out to clients that are launching DPOs, organizing workshops and meeting one on one with companies to present the new capabilities made possible by the partnership.

Cutting Edge Capital (CEC) provides small and mid-sized businesses with the information, tools, and expertise they need to raise capital in a way that fits with their unique business model and long-term goals. The firm has completed more than ten DPOs for clients that raised over $5M, and has another 30+ DPOs in the pipeline.

As experienced business lawyers, entrepreneurs, and finance experts, the CEC team helps businesses solicit non-traditional sources of funding. In addition to being a great way to raise capital, DPOs allow businesses to build public support and recognition at the same time they are raising funds.

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