“People crowdfund for many reasons and not just for the money. It’s about the crowd, it’s about the network, it’s about getting your message out there, it’s about getting product evangelists and also it’s great marketing and PR.”
Social investing. Why shouldn’t you be able to use information exchange inside of Twitter and Facebook? Since the dawn of human history when people had a creative idea they turned to family, your synagogue, your fraternity, your tribe or whatever network you were part of and raised money from people that cared about you and cared about what you are doing. Crowd funding just allows for that to happen via technology, but we have already seen that the major equity effects of crowd funding are that angel networks are cooperating now. Angel networks are syndicating. What that means is that you used to go to one angel network and try and get them to write you a big fat check, and even if they say yes what they now do is tap into lots of other networks. Everyone is syndicating; everyone is spreading risk and spreading opportunities. So it is based on openness, data sharing, transparency, and sharing networks, which should really make a lot of sense to your millennial audience, which is one of the reasons why it is growing so fast. So where the future is, is a lot of investing is going to be socially based, and you’re going to want to see what a lot of people have to say about an investing opportunity and not just trust your broker if you actually have a broker or read a 400 page respectus, which is required by the gov’t, which no one actually has time to read anyways. So why not turn to your crowd to have them help you make intelligent decisions
About Richard Swart:
Richard Swart is the Chief Strategy Officer of NextGen Crowdfunding. With more than 20 years of experience in the industry, he also serves as a member of the University of Cambridge’s Alternative Financing Industry Board. Richard is also a founding board member of the Crowdfunding Professional Association (CfPA) and the Crowdfunding Intermediary Regulatory Advocates (CIFRA). He has as worked nationally to develop initiatives for entrepreneur funding and business competitions, and has been instrumental in the development of crowdfunding. He was recently lead author of a forthcoming study of crowdfunding internationally for the World Bank. Additionally, he advises the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and works with several other prominent foundations, think tanks, funds and corporations.
Swart holds a PhD in information systems from Utah State University and studied at the University of Utah and Stanford University