Know any Investors? Well, Actually, Yes I Do.

venture capitalist

May 16th marks a revolution in fund raising for small businesses.

Have you been following the new equity crowdfunding rules that go into effect on Monday?  I’m quite fascinated by the financing doors this opens for so many growing companies. The term “Venture Capitalist” just took on a whole new meaning  and it’s a big deal.

The rule change that went into effect May 16th, basically says, anyone can now purchase equity in pre-IPO companies via selected online investment platforms. In the past this ability was limited to “qualified investors”, those with a net worth of at least one million dollars, or an income of at least $200,000 per year.

Yes, your mom could always invest in your business and the friend of a friend with money to burn.  What this rule change means is that you can invite total strangers to invest in your business, using an online platform that exposes you to hundreds, thousands, maybe millions of them at a time.

As equity crowdfunding with non-accredited investors under Title III comes into effect, it will have massive implications for startups and investors alike, allowing everyday citizens to invest in startups. This will open up a tremendous amount of capital available to early stage companies. – Forbes

May 16th marks a revolution in fund raising for small businesses.

This tremendous amount of capital will flow to growing companies who have a well-developed business plan, strong financials, a solid social media presence and a catchy and exciting tag line/mission statement and marketing plan. Importantly, all of this venture capital won’t be chasing tech, won’t only be interested in unicorns, won’t only flow to young male geeks.  Like Warren Buffet, most ordinary investors want to invest in what they know. That means this “disruption” of traditional financing will see more money flowing to restaurants, and fashion and beauty and boring B2B businesses too …lots of different types of businesses that meet the needs of ordinary people.

While it’s not as simple as using Kickstarter or Indigogo to raise funds, you DO need a bit more formality. (You can find an overview here. ) It’s also a whole lot easier than finding investors on your own…a whole lot.

Like on traditional crowdfunding sites, you’ll need a strong social media presence and marketing plan, not only to market your product, but also to market your ask. You’ll need financial documents and offering documents – with which many of which the platforms are happy to help you! .It’s a little too early to say how much effort marketing the offering will be required by start-ups. Companies on traditional crowdfunding sites tend to do best when they have a solid plan to market their offering and an engaged community.

 

For entrepreneurs, this is a golden opportunity. Unlike  with traditional crowdfunding i.e.  Kickstarter, etc. you can raise some  serious capital. And there are lots of choices of platforms, with many, many specializing in businesses that aren’t software/entertainment/social/apps . If this marketplace, which many compare to the democratization of the stock market that online trading achieved in the ‘90s,follows the same pattern, we’ll see lots of money and lots of opportunity for first movers.

I’ve met many businesses owners with several million dollar businesses that when the conversation comes around to growing through finding investors, the response is, “Yes, we’d love to…know any?”

Now I can confidently say, ‘Yes, actually I do.”

RedRopes Digital can help you develop those plans and market your offering. Most crowdfunding marketing companies focus on traditional crowdfunding, not the development of professional marketing plans required in the equity market.  Our unique skill set combines years of  experience working with start-ups and growing companies, on IPO’s and public offerings with the sophisticated social media outreach you need to reach investors for your company.

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