In my last post, Crowdfunding Websites; where to find investment money under the new JOBS Act,” I wrote about a CNN article, “8 crowdfunding sites to watch." These are sites that CNN deems important to watch as they may become major players for companies and individuals seeking investors under the new JOBS Act. Here is the list
CNN describes Crowdtilt this way: “The brand-new Crowdtilt focuses on "groupfunding": private projects among people who already know each other. Friends can raise money for a common goal, like a week at a beach house, a wedding gift or a community gardens.”
AngelList “connects startups with a roster of high-profile investors and entrepreneurs. Startups seeking funding visit Angel.co and browse through a long list of techy types (currently almost 110,000 people), . Seekers can cull the list by selecting roles like "seed fund" or "VC" and check out investors' profiles, including what they've invested in, and what they're looking for.
CNN tells us that “Crowdfunder has been an active backer of the JOBS Act, since its entire business model is illegal until the legislation kicks in.” The site was set up right after the bill was passed and is a strong proponent.
“WeFunder has been running a private beta test, through which nearly 3,800 backers have pledged almost $9.2 million to startups, the site claims. But until the new laws kick in, that's all funny money. No actual cash can legally change hands.”
According to CNN, Indiegogo claims to be the biggest crowdfunding platform in the world. “Campaigners can raise cash for pretty much anything they want. Past projects range from a woman's fundraising campaign to pay for in-vitro fertilization to partial funding for the movie Bully, which was later picked up by the Weinstein Company.”
CNN says that “MicroVentures is an online peer-to-peer investment marketplace. It helps accredited investors pool their cash together and get access to startup funding opportunities that aren't usually available outside of the traditional venture capital network…The JOBS Act could let MicroVentures expand to accept investments from anyone who wants in.”
This is a company that currently enables employees and early investors “…holding stock that's essentially illiquid unless they can arrange a private sale to an interested buyer. SecondMarket… facilitate[s] those deals.”
Kickstarter is easily the most recognized name in crowdfunding. Recently, Pebbles, a wristwatch format for iPhones, raised several million dollars in donations. Those who donated will get a watch should the company actually produce any. If Kickstarter changes its business model under the new law, it could have allowed Pebbles to seek even more capital by selling stock.
We will have to see which of these companies convert their platform to match up with the provisions of the new JOBS Act. I have a feeling that there is some big money hiding out in the weeds that is going to set up a major platform. This is really getting interesting.