Will the 2016 Crowd Invest Summit go down in Equity Crowdfunding history?

Today, December 7th, 2016, may go down as one of the most significant days in the equity crowdfunding history. There have been many monumental days for equity crowdfunding over the past few years.

  • On April 5th, 2013 the Jumpstart Our Business Startup Act was passed and signed into law by President Barack Obama.
  • On September 23rd, 2013, Title II went into effect allowing private businesses to publicly solicit for investment.
  • And finally on October 30th, 2015, Title III was passed, allowing private businesses to accept investments from non-accredited investors beginning on May 16th, 2016.

Today, December 7, 2016, The Crowd Invest Summit marks a colossal achievement for the emerging equity crowdfunding industry, as all of the leaders come together to continue to move this industry forward.

Crowd Invest Summit is a crowdfunding conference and expo with a mission to educate and bring together accredited and non-accredited investors with startups, issuers, and real estate investment opportunities.

It has been almost seven full months since Title III, which allows non-accredited investors the opportunity to invest in private companies, went into effect. According to NextGen Crowdfunding, over $14.4 Million dollars has been raised. Leading up to the passing of Title III, many industry leaders and platform leaders expected those initial numbers to be far higher. Many people thought that the first batch of startups would quickly reach their crowdfunding goals just due to the excitement of non-accredited investors being able to invest for the first time. “It’s off to a relatively slow start,” said Dr. Richard Swart, CFO of NextGen Crowdfunding. “It’s actually a slower start than those of us in the industry expected it to grow.”

While many might be disappointed by the “slow start”, there are so many positive things to be proud of. To begin, it has been made clear that startups see equity crowdfunding as an effective alternative option to raising capital from venture capitalists. While one could argue that there have been a shortage of interested non-accredited investors, it is very difficult to argue that startup companies are not interested in equity crowdfunding. In just this short time, there have already been over 120 different fundraising campaigns across the numerous Title III platforms. Furthermore, these 120 campaigns have spread from over 30 US states and across multiple different industries. While many thought that equity crowdfunding might be specifically built for technology startups, lifestyle brands such as breweries and consumer products like medical services have been successful.

The word is getting out that companies with passionate customers have an incredible opportunity to raise capital from the people who understand their company the most. That being said, for this alternative fundraising form to truly blossom and for the industry as a whole to continue to grow, the industry leaders must take what they have learned over the past 7 months, and come together to make each piece of this large puzzle succeed. That is why the Crowd Invest Summit is so monumental for this industry.

For the first time since May 2016, the industry comes together to share their thoughts and ideas and anecdotes, and reflect on how we can all work together to improve the entire industry. Each individual in the ecosystem — the platforms, the startups, the accountants, the lawyers, the marketing agencies and many more — have all been quietly working to establish themselves inside this growing industry. As the industry comes together, this is the time where we can come together, and help equity crowdfunding to solve the existing and to continue to grow this industry that we all believe in. For two days we will stop competing, and we will put our minds together to make equity crowdfunding as successful of an industry as possible.

Who would have thought that only seven months after Title III went into effect the leaders of the industry would be sitting in the gigantic Los Angeles Convention Center learning from some of the best minds in the world? Tim Draper, Robert Herjavec and James Altucher are just a few of the many noteworthy speakers who have decided to come to the Crowd Invest Summit. They have noticed the massive impact that equity crowdfunding is having and will continue to have on our startup ecosystem.

Bringing the brightest, most forward-thinking minds in one room will start dialogue for improvements and open many doors for partnerships and collaborations. Collaboration will bring together the unique experience from parties working on different sides of the equity crowdfunding equation. With a more profound understanding of the entire equity crowdfunding machine, we are more likely to see many far more successful campaigns. These successful campaigns will instill confidence in all aspects of the ecosystem — from the companies to the investors — and will lead to the ultimate success of the industry.

The 2016 Crowd Invest Summit symbolizes a new chapter in the history of equity crowdfunding. The different industry partners have now had seven months to get their feet wet, but finally they will all sit in the same conference room, forget about their individual businesses for a moment, and work as one to take this industry to the next level. Without each vertical working inside this industry, equity crowdfunding would really struggle to reach the levels we have always dreamed of. Each branch of the ecosystem must be as efficient as possible.

Our marketers must understand the crowd, our accountants and lawyers must be efficient and timely, and our platforms prepare the companies and investors as best as possible. If any of these branches fail, equity crowdfunding will be damaged. The Crowd Invest Summit will stand as a symbol to celebrate all that has been accomplished by equity crowdfunding, and as a time to get together and move the industry forward.

At CrowdTap, we engineer successful equity crowdfunding campaigns.