Crowdfunding has exploded onto the scene and it’s not entirely ready from a regulatory standpoint. Earlier this year the JOBSAct was passed and with that the SEC has been diligently (we hope) working on regulations that will allow the general public to invest in startups via crowdfunding, up to one million dollars. As soon as the JOBSAct looked like it was going to pass, shingles for crowdfunding startups went up everywhere.
One of our favorite startups in the crowdfunding space is EarlyShares. First off EarlyShares is based in Miami Florida so of course it’s an “everywhere else” startup. Secondly, CEO and founder Maurice Lopes has decided not to sit on his ass and wait out the SEC, which could go into the early part of this year. While most of the crowdfunding startups loaded up a back end, and a launch rock page they’ve, for the most part been waiting.
Lopes has actually been proactive about promoting EarlyShares, but moreso promoting the entire concept of crowdfunding. He’s in the midst of a nationwide road tour, offering free workshops about exactly what crowdfunding is, how to do it and the ramifications of it. We’ve seen Lopes in Chicago at TechWeek and in Memphis for one of his road trip work shops(we like road trippers). Getting in the trenches with other entrepreneurs and startups is definitely going to work to Lopes’ advantage when it comes time to officially startup crowdfunding.
Apparently while Lopes and EarlyShares have been on the road they’ve also been very busy. They announced earlier this month that they had acquired HelpersUnite. HelpersUnite is a crowdfunding portal dedicated to artistic and cause related projects. This is a milestone in the crowdfunding industry as it’s the first reported acquisition and it comes before crowdfunding for equity has officially been released.
The year old HelpersUnite is the world’s first platform to combine artistic creativity, entrepreneurial crowdfunding and event ticket sales, with charitable giving. It raises money, increases awareness, and generates an audience for special events all at once in one place. To date, HelpersUnite has assisted more than a 100 artists and entrepreneurs in funding their dream projects while also providing access to more than 1,000,000 U.S.-based charities.
“We investigated several potential partners and HelpersUnite was by far the best,” said EarlyShares co-Founder and CEO, Maurice Lopes. “HelpersUnite was attractive, because we wanted to be able to operate in the crowdfunding space, while the SEC writes the rules governing Equity Based Crowdfunding.” Lopes continued “Through this acquisition, EarlyShares will expand its capabilities and continue the great work done by HelpersUnite,”
The best event for startups and entrepreneurs “everywhere else” is upon us