Investing Trend for 2014: Equity Crowdfunding No idea, no problem. Platforms like Upstart and Pave allow entrepreneurs to crowdfund from accredited investors in exchange for a small cut of their future incomes.
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It has been a good year for crowdfunding. The Securities and Exchange Commission lifted the ban on general solicitation, meaning U.S. entrepreneurs can advertise publicly that they're looking for investors. Research firm Massolution estimates that individuals have raised $5.1 billion on crowdfunding sites this year, nearly twice as much as in 2012.
Platforms that take a cut of the capital, such as Kickstarter, are no longer the only way to go, as Crowdhoster and Selfstarter have made it possible to run a DIY crowdfunding campaign. But the latest platforms, such as Upstart and Pave, don't even require a solid idea or business plan. With these services, 'treps can sell equity in themselves to accredited investors in exchange for a small cut of their future income.