Crowdfunding Meets Investment Banking

As the holiday season draws closer, it seems unavoidable: Our social media feeds will begin to be filled with requests to support our friends – or friends – on their latest project on Kickstarter or GoFundMe.

Crowdsourcing has changed from something curious to an already established tool for various entrepreneurs and artists, from board game designers to online video creators to charity organizers. To get more info about Crowdfunding you may go to

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I recently contributed to the Kick starter campaign, launched by a college professor at my alma mater, to produce card games about social science experiments and human behavior.

But even though crowdfunding is common, most are still framed in terms of gifts or donations; participants often receive "benefits," including inside information, stolen goods or early copies of funded products, but there is no contribution to the Kickstarter campaign that was once an investment in the traditional sense.

The Securities and Exchange Commission recently adopted a rule that applies the 2012 law which opens the door for startups that sell shares directly to retail investors through crowdfunding style portals. Starting next year, businesses will be able to offer investors a piece of their company by legally selling securities online.

The regulation also sets limits for issuers, including disclosure requirements for certain business information and limits of $ 1 million in amounts that can be raised by publishers through crowdfunding in a 12-month period. Companies that want to raise more than $ 1 million can do so, but must provide financial reports audited by independent accountants, something that may not be affordable to many new startups.

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