TECHCRUNCH: In a move that feels fairly unusual, Global Founders Capital (GFC), the venture capital arm of German startup factory and e-commerce behemoth Rocket Internet, has invested in a startup before it’s even launched. The company in question is BrickVest, a London and Berlin-based real estate investment platform founded by Emmanuel Lumineau, Thomas Schneider, and Adalbert Wysocki, who have a background in investment banking, real estate and fintech. It’s launch is pegged for Q3 2015, but interested parties can sign up for pre-registration now with the promise to be able to get in on the action early once the first real estate is listed on the site.
TECHCRUNCH: GoFundMe confirmed that it has raised venture capital financing in a blog post today, infusing the previously bootstrapped company with cash that will give it room to grow. (more…)
The Economist: Crowdfunding is just one of a number of ways in which European SMEs, typically far more reliant on bank financing than their American counterparts (see chart), are trying to compensate for the continuing decline in bank lending. Others include issuing publicly tradable debt or equity; placing securities privately with institutional investors; and accepting loans from non-bank financial institutions (“shadow banks”). Banks and others are also securitising loans to SMEs (ie, pooling them, dividing the pool into tranches with different degrees of risk, and selling the resulting securities to investors). Governments are keen to promote all this, to limit the economic harm done by sickly banks. (more…)
DEALSTREETASIA: Singapore-based crowdfunding platforms CoAssets, FundedByMe and New Union have established a tripartite alliance to grow crowdfunding in Southeast Asia. Combined, the three companies have facilitated raising of S$200 million ($148.17 million dollars) through international campaigns, to date. They plan to accelerate this growth in the coming months, despite the relative youth of the industry in the region. (more…)
FAST COMPANY: People in Germany can crowdfund their bright ideas using Kickstarter. If it comes as a surprise that they haven’t been able to do so for a long time, that’s understandable. Germany, after all, is the fourth biggest economy in the world. It has the largest population in the European Union. Entering Germany at its own pace is entirely consistent with Kickstarter’s way of doing things, which tends to be measured and thoughtful. In its six years of existence, the company has only rolled out in 10 countries. Germany is number 11; France, which goes live on May 27, will make it a dozen (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: For those who are looking to invest in real estate, finding good opportunities can be difficult. In commercial real estate, unless you know a property owner or developer, it’s nearly impossible to get your foot in the door. But today onstage at Disrupt NY, a company called Selequity has launched a platform that will make crowdfunding real estate investments much easier. (more…)
TECHINASIA: Brooklyn-based crowdfunding site Kickstarter has proven many times over that collecting funds from the public for creative projects can work. In crowdfunding, backers donate money to make a project or cause they admire come true. Some crowdfunding campaigns are based on a pre-order system, where the backer gets a product once it is completed and deliverable. Others are based on a system where the backer gets a gift or some form of other perk as reward for their contribution. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: TechCrunch is hearing from a few sources that GoFundMe, a crowdfunding and fundraising startup, is seeking venture financing after bootstrapping the company since 2008. According to those sources, Accel Partners is in the mix, and one says they may be leading the round. Sources said the valuation is around $500 million, though one source said the valuation could that go beyond that. Sources said the deal has not closed yet, so as usual things could certainly change through the end of the funding process. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: Alphaworks, the equity crowd-funding platform for startups and their communities, is today re-branding to Quire.com. CEO Erin Glenn said that the company was eager to get a .com domain and that ‘quire’ (a centuries old word that which means ‘folio’ or collection of single pages) was a perfect fit for what the platform represents. (more…)
TECHINASIA: Meeting Capital Match co-founders Pawel Kuznicki and Kevin Lim, it feels like they are well on their way to bridge the gap between a technology company and big finance. Dressed in button-up shirts and dark trousers, I get the feeling they’re going to advise me about loans rather than discuss setting up a tech startup. It’s a good thing, then, that they are here to do both. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: WeFinance, launching today, is the latest startup to use a combination of technology and crowdfunding in order to offer borrowers lower interest rates on loans, while reducing lenders’ risk. The new peer-to-peer lending platform operates something like a Kickstarter for personal loans – largely those in the range of $10,000 to $20,000, and many of which are being used to help borrowers fund their educational expenses, including tuitions, bootcamps, financial support during unpaid internships, and more. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: Kickstarter has enabled a private beta feature that’s starting to show up for logged in project creators, offering a kind of community knowledge base that lets users ask questions and provide answers to other creators about crowdfunding and best practices. The so-called Campus seems designed to act as a central repository for the kind of advice that’s often being exchanged between crowdfunders anyway in conversations every day, only centralized, archived and indexed on Kickstarter itself. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: China’s largest e-commerce companies are eager to leverage their millions of users and hoards of data for new projects. For example, Alibaba’s other businesses include healthcare management, financial services, and cloud data. Now JD.com, its smaller but still formidable rival, is branching out into crowdfunding for startups. (more…)
Crowdsourcing.org: Global crowdfunding experienced accelerated growth in 2014, expanding by 167 percent to reach $16.2 billion raised, up from $6.1 billion in 2013. In 2015, the industry is set to more than double once again, on its way to raising $34.4 billion. These are the figures from Massolution’s highly anticipated 2015CF – Crowdfunding Industry Report, which was released today. Thanks to our sponsors, the first 50 copies of the report can be purchased at half price with the code FIRST50. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: During April, the nation will observe Financial Literacy Month – meaning it’s time to revisit the diverging roads to funding early-stage startups. The rise of non-traditional routes for raising capital, such as Kickstarter, has catalyzed a much-needed renaissance in funding options for entrepreneurs. With the passing of the JOBS Act, entrepreneurs have a bevy of new opportunities for raising seed funding, beyond the ever-illusive Silicon Valley checkbook. There are going to be complications associated with making sense of what funding route is best for your company and product needs, but sometimes the answer will reside in a combination of options. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: Pebble went back to crowdfunding site Kickstarter to help fund the Pebble Time, its second major hardware iteration. The company likely could’ve gone with a more traditional product launch, with a brief pre-order window or direct to market availability, but the campaign did break Kickstarter’s all-time records, netting over $20 million ($20,338,986 to be exact) from 78,741 backers, which is newsworthy over and above the actual product it’s selling. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: Angel investor Gil Penchina had partnered with Indiegogo to launch a new syndicate on AngelList dedicated to investing in successful campaigns. It launched yesterday and had $75k in capital committed in the first five hours. Total carry of syndicate per deal is 20%, it is expected to make 5+ investments per year with a value starting from $1000
FAST COMPANY: Since 2009, the crowdfunding platform Kickstarter has nurtured great ideas. But once a project reaches its funding goal, it can get lost in the mix, and its Kickstarter page becomes a shell of its former self. Spotlight, launching today, is Kickstarter’s attempt to extend the life of a project beyond the funding stage. It gives the creators of successful projects a way to shape their story and image the way any company might market an important new product. (more…)
GLOBES: iAngels has developed a model for investment of small amounts in start-ups, based on experienced investors. Russian billionaire and Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich continues to invest in Israeli start-ups: through Millhouse Capital, his investment company, he has led a $2.25 million investment in iAngels, a company started by entrepreneurs Mor Assia and Shelly Hod-Moyal. They founded iAngels in early 2014, and developed a model for investment of small amounts in startups, based on experienced investors. The company raised several hundred thousand dollars in the past, with the new investment making a total of $2.6 million raised by the company to date.
FINOVATE: Online thematic investment brokerage Motif Investing has teamed up with Pacific Life to provide millennial investors with an opportunity to invest in the social causes they care most about. Four new motifs will be offered, each including stocks from major U.S. companies that have made significant contributions to charities and foundations focused on issues ranging from education and human rights to fighting poverty and cancer. (more…)
TECHCRUNCH: The Pebble Time Kickstarter gained some momentum thanks to Apple’s special Watch event Monday. The new smartwatch from the smartwatch pioneer was drawing in funding at a rate of around $6,000 per hour on Sunday, March 8, which rose to $10,000 per hour on Monday, March 9 (when the event took place), and capped out at $16,000 per day on average during March 10, the day following Apple’s press presentation.
Pebble CEO and founder Eric Migicovsky told former Y Combinator lead and investor Paul Graham that interest in Apple’s media event had a doubling impact on the rate of its ongoing crowdfunding campaign, but in fact the numbers reveal it more than doubled, and in fact almost tripled in the extended wake of the announcement. (more…)
VENTUREBEAT: Less than a week after Kickstarter saw the new Pebble smartwatch smash its previous funding record to smithereens, fellow crowdfunding platform Indiegogo has an all-new record to boast about too. With $5.3 million in the coffers so far and 27 days still remaining, the Flow Hive campaign has now passed the previous record-holder — Hour of Code— which had received some big-name donations from the likes of Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg to help increase uptake of computer science in schools.
FAST COMPANY: Kickstarter may have kickstarted the crowdfunding movement, but it did so with arbitrary and capricious rules that embraced some projects while refusing to host others, and limited its own growth. But the company underwent a leadership change in late 2013, and last year reengineered itself as an integral part of the startup hardware boom. It saw two companies that started on its platform, Oculus and SmartThings, get acquired by Facebook and Samsung, for $2 billion and $200 million respectively. And it neared in on $1.5 billion in money pledged to projects.