Traditionally, if you want to invest in business, you’ve either got to start one yourself or be what’s known as an accredited investor. That means, among other things, you’ve got to have a million dollars in assets (not counting the value of your residence). Of course, crowdfunding has been around a while now, but prior to the new crowdfunding law that went into effect his month, you couldn’t actually own a piece of the business you were contributing to through Kickstarter or another crowdfunding site. The federal government is also considering a change in the law, but for now, this is primarily for Oregonians investing in Oregon businesses.
Amy Pearl with Hatch Innovation has been central to getting the Oregon law passed. She’s been leading the charge for the first round of businesses who will get to try out the new funding model. We’ll talk with her about what kind of a difference this could make for businesses with fewer than 50 employees, which she says describes more than 97 percent of all the businesses in the state. By law, we’re not allowed to tell you the names of any of the other businesses who will be part of the official launch, however we are allowed to tell you that we’ll talk to two of them — an ice cream business and an agri-tourism venture.
Have you used crowdfunding to raise money for a creative project? Would you consider funding your own business this way? What would you want to know before investing in a business or startup?