Regulation Crowdfunding Turns Three!

Regulation Crowdfunding, the law that ushered in mainstream crowdinvesting, turns three today. And while it might not be growing by audacious leaps and bounds, it’s not a slacker, by any means. Regulation Crowdfunding, a centerpiece of the 2012 JOBS Act also known as Title III, allows small businesses and startups to raise up to $1.07 […]

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Crowdfunding Portal Mainvest is on a Hyperlocal Mission in Massachusetts

More than $2.7 billion in venture capital flowed into Massachusetts in the first quarter, according to the latest PriceWaterhouseCoopers survey. Yet pretty much none of that went to the kind of local businesses that anchor neighborhoods—the restaurants, cafes, yoga studios and breweries. Fortunately, those mom & pops have another option, thanks to Mainvest, an investment […]

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Omidyar Network Spins Off Flourish, A Financial Inclusion Venture Firm

Creating a more inclusive economy is a pressing challenge. Acknowledging that, Omidyar Network has spun off its financial inclusion initiative into a standalone venture firm. Called Flourish, it backs entrepreneurs forming impact-oriented financial services ventures and continues the work of the past twelve years as part of Omidyar Network—including its existing $200 million portfolio. Flourish will […]

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In Chicago, Boosting Entrepreneurial Opportunities While Saving Manufacturing Jobs

In greater Chicago, most owners of manufacturing companies are not only white, but also are retirement-age and lack a succession plan. Their kids don’t want to take over or they lack the skills to do so. The likeliest fate for those businesses is to be bought by private equity firms that fire the employees, sell […]

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Impact Investors are not Funding the Patagonias of Tomorrow—and That’s a Problem

The impact investing community does not always agree on everything. But ask any impact investor who the figureheads of the environmental movement that they look to for guidance are, and they’re likely to answer “Patagonia,” without skipping a beat. Patagonia is a global apparel brand with roughly $1 billion in annual revenue and considerable environmental street […]

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Impact Investors are not Funding the Patagonias of Tomorrow—and That’s a Problem

The impact investing community does not always agree on everything. But ask any impact investor who the figureheads of the environmental movement that they look to for guidance are, and they’re likely to answer “Patagonia,” without skipping a beat. Patagonia is a global apparel brand with roughly $1 billion in annual revenue and considerable environmental street […]

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Why Low Minimum Funding Targets Hurt Investment Crowdfunding

Many businesses raising money under Title III of the JOBS Act are setting “target amounts” as low as $10,000. I understand the motivation, but I’d urge issuers and the platforms to think twice. Background In Title III Crowdfunding (also known as “Regulation Crowdfunding” or “Regulation CF” or simply “Reg CF”), the business (known as the […]

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The Year in Community Capital: Coops, Crowdfunding and Other Coups

It’s been a head-spinning year. But amid the chaos, a lot of good progress was made in the community capital field.  Here are some of the top stories of 2018: 1. Coops Rising The United Nations designated 2012 the International Year of Cooperatives, but we would argue 2018 was the year that cooperatives really began […]

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Crowdfunded Companies Find Success With Follow-On Funding

Who says crowdfunding will scare off follow-on investors? Quite the contrary, it seems. Businesses are finding that a successful investment crowdfunding campaign can pave the way for follow-on  funding from angels, venture capitalists, banks and other institutional investors. The latest—and largest—example to date: Beta Bionics, the maker of a “bionic pancreas” that was among the […]

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Two Coops Focused on Community-Owned Housing and Solar Take Root

A pair of cooperatives aiming to put affordable housing and renewable energy in community hands made their official debut on Wednesday in Oakland, Calif. The groups, the East Bay Permanent Real Estate Cooperative and People Power Solar Cooperative, were incubated out of the Sustainable Economies Law Center (SELC), a nonprofit that has nurtured many of […]

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