Starting Today, There Is a New Way for Entrepreneurs to Raise Money. Here's the Good, the Great, the Bad and the Ugly. Equity crowdfunding has historically only been open to accredited investors. As of May 16, anyone can invest in a startup with equity crowdfunding.

By Catherine Clifford

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.


Starting today, entrepreneurs have a new way to raise money.

Equity crowdfunding, whereby entrepreneurs sell a portion of their companies in exchange for cash, has historically only been available to accredited investors. As of today, however, anyone can invest in a startup through equity crowdfunding.

This rule change has been a long time coming. Industry stakeholders are eagerly anticipating the spigot for this new pipeline of capital being turned on.

However, launching a new investment vehicle is a serious undertaking and especially in the beginning, there is sure to be some agitation as this new funding mechanism launches.

For a complete explanation of what's happening, why it matters and what each side of the financial relationship -- the entrepreneur and the investor -- should expect, have a look at our five-part feature series on this next generation of equity crowdfunding.

The overview: What's happening and why it matters.

Starting May 16, Entrepreneurs Can Raise Money in a Whole New Way. Here's What You Need to Know.

Equity crowdfunding 2.0: What entrepreneurs need to know.

An Entrepreneur's Essential Guide to the New Wild West of Funding Opening on May 16

Equity crowdfunding 2.0: What investors need to know.

Your Guide to the High-Risk, High-Reward World of Investing in Startups When Fundamental Finance Law Changes Go Into Effect May 16

Who is this right for? A breakdown of the type of entrepreneur most likely to benefit from the new equity crowdfunding.

Which Entrepreneurs Will Benefit Most From the New Era of Crowdfunding?

The future: What challenges entrepreneurs and investors should expect going forward.

Next Generation Crowdfunding Starts May 16. Expect Opportunity and Growing Pains.

Questions? Comments? Thoughts? Please engage with us! I am @CatClifford on Twitter and you can use the hashtag #CrowdfundWithCat to follow along in our conversation.
Catherine Clifford

Senior Entrepreneurship Writer at CNBC

Catherine Clifford is senior entrepreneurship writer at CNBC. She was formerly a senior writer at, the small business reporter at CNNMoney and an assistant in the New York bureau for CNN. Clifford attended Columbia University where she earned a bachelor's degree. She lives in Brooklyn, N.Y. You can follow her on Twitter at @CatClifford.

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