Heather Schwarz Lopes, Co-Founder and Chief Strategy Officer at EarlyShares.com spends some time with me at the CREW Network Annual Convention in Bellevue, Washington and gives a very animated account of crowdfunding and what is big that is going on.
Hint: Investments are being funded. She is excited that crowdfunding is now gaining traction. Deals are being funded.
Since EarlyShares was first organized, four years ago, there were a lot of naysayers who didn’t believe that regulations would ever get approved. Once they were approved, then people thought it was a fad. Well, with a billion dollars getting funded, just last year, it no longer looks like a fad.
According to Heather, “This is future of how commercial real estate private investing will be done.” I’m not sure that I fully agree with Heather. With that being said, I believe that there will be a significant place at the table to crowdfunding at the private investing table. How significant, remains to be seen.
“Ten years from now it is projected to be a 20 billion dollar a year marketplace according to Heather.
“This whole industry has created an access point for investors, ….. where investors can tap into these individual, unique property offerings that they, just never had access to, before.” Well said, Heather.
We also spend some time discussing Reg A+, a new regulation that, Heather refers to as a “light registration” or “mini IPO” where an owner can raise up to 50 million dollars, every 12 months and include a category of investors, not heretofore reachable, unaccredited investors. What is also exciting to Heather is that before you actually make the commitment to raise the capital and incur the expenses relating to the capital raise, you can “test the waters” where you can put up your offering or your proposed offering to the public and see what kind of interest there is for your offering.