The Latest Crowdfunding News – 12/9/16

The Latest Crowdfunding News

Hi guys and welcome to our first September crowdfunding news edition. As usual we will be taking a look at the latest goings-on in the world of crowdfunding and today we start our round-up by focusing on Kickstarter who have headed east and launched in Asia to looking at how European alternative finance performed in 2015. Missed our recent round-ups? If so, catch up here.

Kickstarter Launches in Asia

Kickstarter Asia

Kickstarter, one of the most well known crowdfunding sites has launched in both Hong Kong and Singapore respectively, and are their first ever sites in the continent.

Prior to launching in Asia, Kickstarter only operated in Europe, North America, and Australia.

In the past, entrepreneurs from Singapore and Hong Kong had to co-operate with overseas partners if they wanted their ideas published on the site.

With the crowdfunding giant now launching in Hong Kong and Singapore, people can present their projects from a local network as well have their fundraising goals set in Hong Kong/Singapore dollars.

Kickstarter will now compete with local sites such as FringeBacker from Hong Kong as well as the likes of OurCrowd and MoolahSense from Singapore.

Just like other crowdfunding sites, Kickstarter gains a cut from each project that has been pledged by its backers.

Well known Kickstarter projects include the Oculus Rift, which received its first funding via Kickstarter back in 2012 to the Pebble smartwatch.

Image Source : BBC News

Finnish Crowdfunding Act Updated

Finland Crowdfunding

From Asia to now travelling to Scandinavia! A few days ago in Finland, the government updated its crowdfunding act, the new legislation makes it easier to register, for example, until now, equity crowdfunding in the Scandinavian country has required an investment firm license from the Finnish Financial Supervisory Authority (FIN-FSA). However, the license slowed the market entry for new players.

Registration is a considerably more affordable alternative to the investment firm license, and this therefore allows new players into the market.

Investor protection is still at a good level under the new act, despite the fact that the registration process is a lighter form of regulation than a license.

In addition, the new Finnish crowdfunding act does not cover rewards or donations based crowdfunding models. For example, rewards-based models that are used by the likes of Kickstarter fall under consumer protection acts. In contrast, donation based crowdfunding in Finland is legal, anyone who wishes to create a donation based campaign must obtain a special fundraising permit from the police.

To sum it up briefly, Whilst the overall market size of alternative finance in Finland is relatively small, the government and industry bodies are hopeful that a balanced regulatory approach will help boost the up and coming sector.

Native equity crowdfunding company Invesdor’s CEO Lasse Mäkelä recently told Crowdfund Insider that the new Act should increase growth of the Finnish crowdfunding market. He stated :
“On a European level, crowdfunding volume is expected to double this year. We believe that with the new legislation Finland will be able to reach similar numbers.”

Crowdfunding in a tub! A brief insight into Oppo Ice Cream

Oppo Crowdfunding

At The House Crowd we love a good crowdfunding story and thought this was worth a mention (especially if you love ice cream!).
Back in 2015 Oppo Ice Cream at the time, was the most the “most overfunded” offer ever on Seedrs.

The London based company had originally set out to gain £150,000, however, they received triple the specified amount. Earlier this year they was again returned for further funding via Seedrs and smashed their £150,000 in just six hours!

Just like us, they too went on Dragon’s Den, they might not of had much of a slaying as what Frazer experienced, but again just like us being on the show helped propel their product.

Although they came out of the den empty handed, they revealed that they had no intention of taking The Dragon’s money as they had already funded the business by offering shares to their fans which they felt was a much better way of growing their brand. Going on the show for them was about spreading their message to the British public that you can indeed indulge in luxury ice cream… without looking like you have.

As we know, gaining business success is not a walk in the park, and it is something that takes hard work to cultivate. Oppo is also a great example of a small company that leveraged investment crowdfunding to take their business and product to the next level and a tasty investment it turned out to be!

Image source : Crowdfund Insider

FCA Calls for Input on Equity Crowdfunding Regulation

Crowdfunding FCA

Upon releasing the new rules in 2014, the FCA promised a post-implementation review of the crowdfunding market and regulatory framework in 2016 (the “Review”). (Lexology, August 2016)

The financial body has released a ‘Call for input’ which describes the results of their initial market research and sets out a number of questions. The questions are linked to a range of areas and the document contains some hints on the future direction of investment based crowdfunding regulation.

Firstly, one key area that they will be taken into consideration is due diligence. Current regulations do not set a minimum standard of due diligence, the regulations cite concerns relating to financial crime and stresses the importance of protecting the interests of investors. They therefore suggest that minimum standards may be introduced.

Secondly, they’ll take client assessment into consideration. The regulator wants to review the extent to which firms are meeting these requirements and whether clients are sufficiently informed to understand the risks that are involved. In addition, they may consider publishing further advice on how to ensure retail investors meet certain criteria as well as introduce sanctions for companies who do not abide by the rules.

Lastly, the FCA will be looking at disclosure. As Lexology mention in a recent blog article, equity crowdfunding platforms are required to provide potential investors with sufficient information so that they are reasonably able to understand the nature of the product and its risks.The Review will look at whether this high-level rule is sufficient to protect investors.

So what happens now? There are currently no proposals to change the regulatory framework for crowdfunding platforms. However, anyone with an interest in equity (or loan-based) crowdfunding has to submit their response to the FCA before 8 September 2016. The feedback will then be used to inform the FCA’s continuing review of the current market. After the Reviewing process, the financial regulator will consider publishing a new consultation document which will include any proposed rule changes.

 

European Alternative Finance Jumps to €5.4 billion in 2015

Europe Alternative Finance

One news story in particular that we stumbled across this week and everyone in the alternative finance community was talking about was Europe.

A report published by the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance (CCAF) entitled “Sustaining Momentum“, looks at the rapid growth of alternative finance across Europe.

In a nutshell, the CCAF reports on the ongoing growth of alternative finance including peer to peer lending, crowdfunding and more. Their findings show that alternative finance jumped 92% year over year to €5.4 billion in 2015.

In addition their research revealed that the UK continues to dominate the continent at €4.4 billion in aggregate funding. France and Germany are second and third with €319 million and €249 million respectively. The Dutch also performed well with €111 million. If you remove the UK out of the picture, European alternative finance increased by 72% year over year going from €594 million in 2014 to €1.019 billion in 2015. While the overall rate of growth slowed, the industry is gaining momentum as new regulations from across the continent take place as well as an array of platforms start to mature.

Interested in the CCAF’s research? If so, read their research embedded below.

CCAF Europe 2016 Sustaining Momentum – Final by CrowdfundInsider on Scribd

 

What Are Your Thoughts?

 

Which of our chosen crowdfunding stories has interested you the most? We would love to hear from you, feel free to leave us a comment on our Facebook and Google Plus pages. If you prefer to tweet us, tweet @TheHouseCrowd.

In the meantime if you want to know more about Property Crowdfunding do register for our Information Pack which will tell you all about it. 

Register Now For More Information

The Latest Crowdfunding News – 25/11/15

Crowdfunding News – All The Latest Updates

This week we focus on the latest crowdfunding news from around the world that has caught our attention. As usual we have an array of exciting news to share with you from a man crowdfunding his house on Facebook to Arsenal fans launch a crowdfunding project to pay for Lionel Messi’s wages (we think he would look better in a sky blue shirt if we are being totally honest!).

 

Facebook and Property Crowdfunding

facebook property crowdfunding

A man from Lytham St Annes in Lancashire attempted to sell his property on Facebook by offering a cash incentive for people who shared his post with friends.

Josh Hocking came up with the idea after being extremely frustrated with his agent’s failure to find someone who would buy his property.

He has previously used the social networking site to find a tenant for an apartment he owned, so he thought he would try the same approach with his house.

As you can see from his Facebook post below, Josh gets straight to the point about selling his property.

Okay! So after the huge success of putting my apartment up for rent on Facebook, I have decided to see if anyone wants to buy my Lovely house!  If you share this status and I sell the house (from your share) I will pay you £1000! It’s 2 bedroom, located on Headroomgate Road in St Annes!

Have a look at the photos! Offers around £195,000. With 10% deposit, expect mortgage payments to be around the £875 mark!” (Estate Agent Today, November 2015).

A few days later his post was shared over 79,000 times! We haven’t heard if anyone has come forward yet, but we love Josh’s forward thinking. We don’t recommend using this approach ourselves, if you would like to have professional advice on property crowdfunding we strongly recommend downloading our FREE information pack or contacting us directly.

Image Source : The Independent

 

Property Crowdfunding Booms In Asia

Crowdfunding Asia

In Asia, property crowdfunding is mostly about presales and debts, instead of equity investment, as regulators have yet to pin down the details on how they would like to govern the fledging industry. (South China Morning Post, November 2015).

At the end of last year mainland China had 128 crowdfunding platforms. plus 32 for equity crowdfunding. What is particularly interesting about these Chinese online crowdfunding platforms is that they do not target the property sector. Developers though have been using the platforms to reach out to potential buyers at a much earlier stage in order to reduce inventories.

A chairman of a property company in China mentioned that property crowdfunding is useful because it cuts construction, sales and marketing, whilst speeding up the cash collection.

Despite regulatory uncertainties which are associated with crowdfunding in this part of the world, well known Chinese developers such as Dalian Wanda Group and Country Garden have selling and raising funds via crowdfunding websites.

Singapore has also been using property crowdfunding, despite the lack of clarity on whether such investment activities should come under the oversight of the city state’s monetary authority. Property crowdfunding operator CoAssets which has been in business for the past two years and is now listed on Australia’s junior stock as it expands in the Asia-Pacific region.

It’s interesting to see that on their site crowdfunding projects are listed as “Presales”. An example of this a developer called Jalin Realty International is marketing a residential project in Melbourne. Apart from introduction of the project and contact information, the website showed minimum investment is A$340,000 and that 28 investors are interested as of Friday.  (South China Morning Post, November 2015).

The Singapore company has raised over S$40 million through over 30 successful deals and is now turning its attention to opportunities in Indonesia ad China. If you have an interest in Asia and crowdfunding we recommend reading CNBC’s recent article on equity crowdfunding gains traction in Asia.

 

Single father feeds homeless in Denver after he was helped by crowdfunding campaign

jamesmoss

This was our favourite and most inspiring crowdfunding story that we have heard of late. James Moss from New York, moved to Colorado, he had a job and a house lined up, unfortunately for James it fell through.

James was featured in vlogger Leon Logothetis#GoBeKindTour which gave him $1,000 (£650) plus a week’s stay at a hotel.

Leon Logothetis returned to see how James was getting on and found out that he got a job as a barber but had no reliable transport to get to work and was still living in a shelter.

A crowdfunding campaign was set up immediately for James and in 11 days $54,800 was raised.

To show his appreciation, James and his friends dished out sandwiches and other food to people in a local Denver park. He told a local news channel that it feels really good to help and that has a “little tingly feeling going on”.

He mentioned in a Youtube video with Leon Logothetis that he had never thought that a small act of kindness would spark such a huge reaction from the public.

James continued to share his experience with Leon and said that he has had nothing but good experiences since moving to Colorado. He stated that he received help from strangers even before the crowdfunding appeal was launched.

Image Source : The Independent

 

Crowdfunding Solar For Palestine

Palestine Crowdfunding

Another crowdfunding story that got our attention was from Jonathan Morgenstein, a former U.S. Marine Corps officer who served in Iraq. During his time there back in 2004, Jonathan was tasked with helping to rebuild Ramadi.When the city’s power lines were cut, as you can imagine from the images that were broadcasted back then, chaos reigned; with a strong black market for generators, fuel, and water.

Eleven years later and Jonathan is helping Palestinian people in the West Bank by using solar energy and has set up a crowdfunding campaign called Empowerment Solar.

The Palestinian electricity grid is anything but stable, with brownouts and blackouts commonplace. What electricity is available is expensive, costing Palestinian firms 10.3% more than Israelis and 64.3% more than in the USA. (Energy Matters, November 2015).

The solar energy crowdfunding campaign needs to raise $50,000 to set up operations, train installers and develop its first solar project according to Energy Matters. So far, $4,000 dollars has been raised and has less than a month to go.

Image Source : Andrew E. Larsen

 

Crowdfunding Messi to Arsenal

Arsenal Messi Crowdfunding

Arsenal fans have taken reports that Lionel Messi wants to a move to the Emirates with a pinch of salt, with one fan comically asking 599,999 other supporters to help pay the Barcelona maestro’s wages. (The Independent, November 2015).

The Daily Star last week reported that Messi would be happy to play his trade in the capital providing The Gunners cough up an astronomical £600,000 a week wage packet for the Argentinian.

After hearing the news, one Arsenal fan (@matt_clarky) offered to set up a £1 direct debit a week to Messi and has asked fellow supporters to follow suit. As seen below.

We love your enthusiasm and forward thinking approach Matt, but we think Messi would look better in a City shirt!

?

Unfortunately at The House Crowd we can’t help your club invest in buying a new striker during the January Window but we do offer an array of property investments. If this is something that might interest you why not take a browse here.

Image Source : ZeeNews

 

What Are Your Thoughts?

Which of our chosen crowdfunding stories has interested you the most? We would love to hear from you, feel free to leave us a comment on our Facebook and Google Plus pages. If you prefer to tweet us, tweet @TheHouseCrowd.

In the meantime if you want to know more about Property Crowdfunding do register for our Information Pack which will tell you all about it. 

Register Now For More Information

 

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