Concord Monitor – Equity crowdfunding allows anyone to invest in start-ups


Like most startups, QaZing in Peterborough needs to raise money. And like many, it needed to choose between crowdfunding and selling equity to rich investors. But unlike any other startup in New Hampshire, it’s doing both. QaZing, which makes an app to connect people with a variety of services in the on-demand marketplace, is the only company in the state to have sought investors under new federal equity crowdfunding rules. This system, which has been in the works since 2012 but only went fully into effect in May, allows virtually anybody to buy equity in a private company, something previously limited to accredited investors with at least $1 million in net worth. “For the first time, anybody, not just the wealthy, can invest in a local company,” said Jason Garland, CEO of QaZing, which has an office on Peterborough’s Main Street. “It’s often the case that a local startup company, if it has the whole community behind it, has a much greater chance of success.” If you donate to a company through Kickstarter, you might get a T-shirt or a gizmo; doing it through StartEngine, the equity crowdfunding portal used by QaZing, gives you a piece of the company that, hopefully, will rise in value. (For details, go to startengine.com/startup/qazing.) Equity crowdfunding, officially called Regulation Crowdfunding Title III or Title IV from Securities and Exchange Commission rules and legislation, is so new that the New Hampshire Bureau of Securities Regulations issued a cautionary press release about the topic Thursday even though the state has virtually no oversight in this area. “It’s just getting started, so we have to see how it develops. What we’re really focused on is making sure that investors realize that it’s out there, but that you’re dealing with startup companies, which have a high failure high, high rate of risk,” said Kevin Moquin, senior staff attorney for the Bureau of Securities Regulation. “You need to know what you’re getting into.” If an equity crowdfunded investment disappears, he said, New Hampshire would get involved only if there was fraud. Otherwise, investors beware.

Source: Concord Monitor – Equity crowdfunding allows anyone to invest in start-ups

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About Stephen G. Barr, Group Publisher

Author, Syndicated Columnist, Editor In-Chief and Group Publisher at SGB Media Group, a social media marketing firm specializing in digital media content production, publishing, affiliate marketing, public relations and advertising. Over 25 years experience in retailing, advertising, website & online forum development, niche social networking, affiliate marketing, search optimization, branding and identity, site location, non-profit fund raising. Event planning, promotion, production and MC/Host at public events. Author, Editor & Publisher of 35 syndicated, digital publications utilizing multiple digital distribution channels in conjunction with launching and administrating national advertising campaigns for major Fortune 500 advertisers in partnership with Google, Ning, Facebook, Myspace, Yahoo, DoubleClick, LinkShare, PepperJam and other industry leading third party affiliate networks. Product development team member from conception to launch on many websites, tangible goods and organizational structure for start ups. Specialties: Public relations, retailing, advertising, website & online forum development, niche social networking, blogging, email campaigns, affiliate/performance marketing, search optimization, branding and identity, site location, event production & promotion, non-profit fund raising and tasteful, responsible adult content publishing. An internationally recognized and read social media columnist & pundit on The Examiner, Associate Content, Vator.tv, X-Biz.net and Technorati and his own affiliated sites.
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