FundedByMe and BrewDog launches a record-breaking crowdfunding round in the Nordics

FundedByMe and BrewDog launches a record-breaking crowdfunding round in the Nordics

FundedByMe and BrewDog, the popular Scottish craft beer brewery that uses
crowdfunding as a core strategy for growth, have joined forces, embarking on a quest to
bring craft beer to the Nordic countries in the biggest equity crowdfunding round ever.

“This is a match made in heaven – not only do we love craft beer, we also share the
conviction that crowdfunding is the future! Equity crowdfunding is growing extremely fast
– at a double-digit rate – and is predicted to be bigger than VC’s and business angels
together, within five years. BrewDog is a forerunner, and serves as great proof that
crowdfunding is so much more than just financing – it is a way of inviting people to play
a vital role in the success of your business, a strategy to achieve extraordinary growth”,
says Daniel Daboczy, CEO and co-founder of FundedByMe.

BrewDog has broken world records by raising over £10 million via its latest crowdfunding
round, Equity for Punks. More than 40,000 people have invested in the brewery to date. The
company also provides a secondary market of its own, offering shareholders the possibility
to trade shares once annually. Partnering with FundedByMe is clear indication of BrewDog’s
mission to grow its company into the Nordics, where it already boasts a loyal following. It is
featured on the shelves at Sweden’s ‘Systembolaget’, Finland’s ‘Alko’ and Norway’s
‘Vinmonopolet’ (government owned monopoly chains for alcoholic beverages).

Since launching in 2007, BrewDog has had an annual growth rate of almost 170 percent,
and is opening new bars on a monthly basis. The brewery launched its latest venue in Soho
London just last week, and now operates 38 bars world wide, including three in Sweden,
one in Finland and one in Norway. BrewDog’s beer is shipped to 55 different countries
around the world, including Mexico, China, South Africa and New Zealand. These
achievements have only been possible thanks to BrewDog’s rapidly expanding community
of passionate shareholders. With the financing from the ongoing Equity for Punks round, the
company is firmly set on launching in the US, the biggest craft beer market in the world.

“With this record-breaking crowdfunding round on FundedByMe, we’ve set out to boost our presence in the Nordics. We want to give those Vikings better access to brilliant craft beer – and maybe break a couple of records
as we go. This is our biggest crowdfunding round ever. Crowdfunding should no longer be
seen as a niche alternative, but a proven, workable option for change-makers”, says James
Watt, Captain and Co-founder of BrewDog.

This investment round is currently open to the public on FundedByMe,
where the company’s prospectus detailing the offer, benefits and projections is available in
English, Swedish, Finnish, Norwegian and Danish. FundedByMe and BrewDog are planning
on hosting and participating in events in Stockholm, Helsinki, Copenhagen and Oslo during
the campaign’s duration. BrewDog offers all shareholders additional benefits including
discounts in BrewDog bars and online, free birthday beers, and of course an invitation to the
annual general meeting, essentially a beer tasting and music festival combo in Scotland.

About BrewDog
Bored of the industrially brewed lagers and stuffy ales that dominated the UK market, school friends
James Watt and Martin Dickie established BrewDog in 2007. They decided the best way to fix this
undesirable predicament was to brew their own beers. Both only 24 at the time, BrewDog’s
cofounders leased a building, got some scary bank loans, spent all their money on stainless steel and
started making hardcore beers. “We are dedicated to making cool, contemporary and progressive
beers showcasing some of the world’s classic beer styles. All with an innovative twist and customary
BrewDog bite.”

Nerdy by Nerds – Entrepreneur Q&A with Peter Arneryd

Nerdy by Nerds – Entrepreneur Q&A with Peter Arneryd

Peter Arneryd from Nerdy by Nerds Jeans on FundedByMe

Introduce yourself – what is your background, what are you passionate about and what are your hopes and dreams? 

My name is Peter and I am from Malmö Limhamn in Sweden and I am part of the founding team of the Swedish jeans brand, Nerdy by Nerds Jeans. I have always been interested in quality clothes so when I was younger I used to study the history of every garment I was buying. My dream has always been to create something that other people would want to use or be a part of. I simply want to be a inspirational person and a role model and with NBN we are able to bring back solid craftsmanship to the world of fashion – in Sweden and beyond.

 

How did the idea for your project come about? Describe what your project does.

We loved clothes and we wanted to work in the fashion industry in some way. The easiest way was – and is – to open up a webshop, but we didn’t want it to be easy. We wanted to create something that we could call ours so we could be hundred percent proud of those product we would be selling. We loved the history of clothes and jeans, of course. There was this moment where my business partners and I realised that we wanted to create our own jeans produced in the old-fashioned way. When we started to produce our jeans we came up with the idea that all our customers should be a part of the production. So this lead us to the idea of how our store would look like – in our stores we want our customers to be able to see, hear, smell, and participate in the production process. Each pair of Nerdy by Nerds jeans is unique and traceable, so that you will always be able to tell when and where they were made.

Nerdy by Nerds factory shop

Why did you decide on crowdfunding? What about FundedByMe appealed to you?

Before we have heard about FundedByMe had we discussed the idea of doing a crowdfunding round on Kickstarter, the largest reward-based platform in the US. But we met the team from FundedByMe at a regional event here in Sweden and, with our goal of attracting the Swedish market, the fastest-growing crowdfunding site in Europe seemed perfect. On top of everything, the passion and energy of the FundedByMe team was great, which made ​​the decision a lot easier.

 

What was the best part about running a campaign on FundedByMe? And what was a challenge?

Doing a crowdfunding round is very special. it’s like starting a new company where everything you do has to be focused on the crowdfunding campaign. Before we went live, we thought that crowdfunding would fix itself. That was not the case, every hour of the day one of us spent on our crowdfunding campaign on FundedByMe. It took a lot of time – even more than you could ever imagine!

Even if crowdfunding is an online investment platform you still have to be out there in the real world to meet people. We almost lived in Stockholm for two months to meet potential investors. One of the difficult parts of crowdfunding is getting to the actual money. People find it easy to subscribe that they want to invest, but when it comes to paying and transferring the money, it is harder.

The best thing about crowdfunding is all the partners we got to know along the way. Many of our investors want to help us with PR, photo, film, music and much more, which is incredibly fun. Another great thing is the marketing and brand exposure you get with a really awesome campaign. We have been featured in pretty much every morning paper in all of Sweden. Importantly, you shouldn’t forget that all of our investors are also our biggest ambassadors. They are talking, wearing and spreading the news about Nerdy by Nerds Jeans out there. That is priceless.

Nerdy by Nerds founding team

Would you recommend other entrepreneurs to consider crowdfunding – and FundedByMe – for their financing needs? Why? Any tips or advice to those considering it?

I would absolutely recommend crowdfunding and FundedByMe to other entrepreneurs. The combination of investments and marketing makes for an amazing part of the the next phase in business. The best tip is to spend many hours on planning your marketing strategy before you roll out your campaign. And then, once you are actually on the platform, to take the time to be very active – be in touch with your investors, answer questions, be out there promoting your brand. It takes a lot of time and energy to get the best result, but it is absolutely worth it in the end.

 

Now that your crowdfunding campaign has closed, what’s next?

We recently opened our first shopfactory in Malmö, our hometown. The next step is to take NBN to Stockholm and opening up a shopfactory there as well. Our brand is going places – watch this space!

Nerdy by Nerds on FundedByMeView the Nerdy by Nerds campaign on FundedByMe here.

 

Beibamboo’s Nina Ignatius named one of Forty to Watch Over 40

Nina Ignatius BeibambooNina Ignatius, the entrepreneur behind the popular babywear brand Beibamboo, was last night named one of Forty Women to Watch Over 40 in 2013 by a panel of esteemed judges, amongst them Merrill Lynch’s Whitney Johnson, author of the popular Harvard Business Review blog. This highly regarded annual list is compiled of female innovators and role models who are creating momentum and changing the world through their creativity, vision and experience. Nina Ignatius joins other distinguished names including Anne-Marie Slaughter and Maria Thomas the former CEO of Etsy.

This year’s list was selected from over 1,000 nominations from around the globe. Only two Europeans made the list and we are thrilled to have Nina in there – as well as making waves on the FundedByMe platform with her innovative brand.


In the first month of crowdfunding the Beibamboo brand has raised over €21,000 from 40 investors, with an additional 175 investors having shown their interest to get involved. In addition to its crowdfunding successes, Beibamboo has also received a tip of the hat from the largest department store in the Nordics, Stockmann, which has already placed a second order for products, two weeks after the first order hit the shelves.

View Nina Ignatius’ Beibamboo crowdfunding project on the FundedByMe platform here.

Equity Crowdfunding Entrepreneur Q&A – Claes Stenmark of Virtuous Vodka

Virtuous Vodka co-founder Claes Stenmark is unique. That much is clear as soon as I get the response to my email asking him to participate in our popular Q&A feature on the FundedByMe blog. “Sure,” it reads, “But let’s do it over lunch instead”. And that pretty much summarised Claes right there – no frills honesty, a whole lot of passion and this unique drive to connect with the people around him, coupled with a burning ambition to make the world a better place. “There’s so much fake in the world, I want to help move us towards a planet that is more real,” he says while scratching his trademark beard. And, sitting across the table from him, I can’t help but believe that he is going to do that. Claes Stenmark is going to change the world into a better place. And successfully launching the ecological, natural-flavoured Virtuous Vodka into liquor stores around Sweden is only the first step in this process!

Claes Stenmark of Virtuous Vodka at the manufacturing distillery

Introduce yourself – what is your background, what are you passionate about and what are your hopes and dreams?

World domination. Through real flavour! At Virtuous Spirits (the holding company for Virtuous Vodka) we strive for a fake-free world. We want to touch real people. Provide real – and great – products. Be honest. And help everyone take responsibility towards the effect that we are having on our planet. I was born and raised in Sweden and have just always loved flavours. My mom tells the story of fetching me from daycare when I was four or five and asking me how my day was and what I had for lunch. When she then asked me how lunch was I replied, “Good fish meal, but they forgot to put wine in the sauce!” I mean, this was in the early ’80s…no one cooked with wine back in the ’80s! But in our family cooking and flavours was part of the make-up. My grandma and I spent hours together in the garden, picking herbs and then washing, chopping these…those are some of my best memories.

Virtuous Vodka - six flavoursHow did the idea for Virtuous Vodka come about? Describe it to us.

While at university I started working as a chef – it was the perfect job for me as it allowed the opportunity to explore my love of food and also helped pay the bills. After finishing university I ended up working in advertising and filming for a number of years, longing for the day where I could start my own business and, somehow, rekindle my love for flavours and cooking. Opening a restaurant was the natural choice, but the long hours, along with the sheer number of great restaurants already out there, didn’t really appeal to me. I wanted to make a difference and bring about change…

My brother-in-law is a super entrepreneur from Cuba who fled to the Soviet Union in the ’90s and was living in the Brazil at the time. We were always talking about different business ideas and I one day emailed him an idea to create an ecological vodka, flavoured with only natural ingredients. His responses always came back swiftly, but on this one he was quiet for a few days. When I finally pushed him about not replying to my email the response came back with a resounding ‘YES’! Fast-forward a couple of months and he had quit his job and relocated to Sweden and we were focusing all our attention on creating and launching Virtuous Vodka.

Virtuous Vodka Jimmy's Passion cocktail

Why did you decide on crowdfunding? What about FundedByMe appealed to you?

We see crowdfunding as marketing…Yes, the money was key, but the bigger motivator was getting this captive audience who tasted our product during the process when we invited them to tasting events, who became shareholders in our business and who would, today, move heaven and earth to help us succeed. That’s the power of crowdfunding! FundedByMe was a natural choice for us as it’s the largest player in Scandinavia and the platform was just launching equity crowdfunding, so we got lots of attention for being the first consumer brand in Sweden to raise funds this way. The fact that the team got really involved (I think most of them invested in us!) and that they really opened up their network to help improve our competencies was awesome.

Today Virtuous Spirits employs three of us full-time. Additionally we have about a dozen people putting in long hours and an additional 117 ambassadors spreading awareness and helping us out by connecting the Virtuous brand to their networks… It’s awesome.

The Virtuous Vodka delivery bike in Stockholm

What was the best part about running a campaign on FundedByMe? And what was a challenge?

The equity crowdfunding phenomenon in and of itself is probably the highlight. The FundedByMe team was super approachable and easy to talk to, helping us along the way and becoming our biggest fans! The challenge is the amount of work it takes to really make an equity crowdfunding campaign succeed…uploading a strong presentation is only a small part! Once your campaign goes into Pre-Round the actual work starts. We contacted a lot of press to help educate the world about our product. When you launch a new concept, in our case naturally flavoured vodka, education is key. We also hosted four exclusive tasting events to potential investors and I’m proud to say that 25% of the people who tasted Virtuous Vodka became investors in our brand.

Virtuous Vodka shots lined up

Would you recommend other entrepreneurs to consider crowdfunding – and FundedByMe – for their financing needs? Why? Any tips or advice to those considering it?

Do it! Have a good pitch. Show how you plan to make money. Explain your product or service in a simple way. Have a great elevator pitch. Then work it. Be accessible. Be proactive and don’t be shy to talk about your campaign. It’s all about how you explain your brand and you have to get to the point very fast!

Virtuous Vodka founder Claes Stenmark showing what happens when everything is done the 'eco' way with real berries for flavouring!

Now that your crowdfunding campaign has closed, what’s next?

Well, we just got accepted to sell through Sweden’s Systembolaget, the nation’s only liquor outlet. We are working on exporting our product outside of Sweden and are establishing relationships with wholesalers in key markets. Right now our next batch of ecological vodka is macerating (that’s a fancy word for ‘infusing’) at our production facility in Nynäshamn, 60km outside of Stockholm.

The real work is just beginning.

Equity Crowdfunding on FundedByMe – a visual explanation

Everyone is talking about Equity Crowdfunding and, while you may “kind of” understand the concept, we thought this great visual explanation of crowd equity, created by FundedByMe friend Peter Sandberg would be spot on.

FundedByMe Equity Crowdfunding Explained - by PoppeTotte

What do you think? Click here to explore some of the trending equity crowdfunding rounds on FundedByMe right now!

Entrepreneurs: Planning a super FundedByMe campaign video

When you decide to fund your business idea using the FundedByMe crowdfunding platform there are a number of tools that can help you best introduce your brand concept. If only you could send thousands of mini-me copies of yourself out into the real world to spend three minutes with each potential investor or supporter…imagine the impact! But, in reality, a really strong campaign video could do just that for you!

Elements of a strong crowdfunding campaign video:

1) Problem statement: You are solving a problem, right? Tell us what that problem is.

2) Introduce your product: Take 30 seconds to give us your elevator pitch as part of your introduction to your product!

3) Key descriptors: What is fantastic about your story? Tell us something we won’t forget!

4) Software / Hardware / Production stats: Show us something technical about your product / service / offering.

5) Usage demonstration: Do you have a sample product? A digitised sample? A drawing? Show us.

6) Features: Give a full description, mentioning everything else you have not yet covered during your campaign video.

7) FundedByMe campaign mention: Tell viewers where they can go to support your idea! Tell them how to find you on FundedByMe.

8) Perks: Is there anything you are offering as an addition to the original offering? Are you throwing in a free t-shirt to the first 100 supporters? A hug? Tell us!

9) Call to action: What do you want viewers to do once this video ends?

10) URL mention: Where can a viewer of your campaign video go to learn more about your team, your product or contact you?

 

Campaign video examples

These are some of our favourite crowdfunding campaigns on the FundedByMe platform at the moment – be sure to watch their videos! Tell us in the comments what you love about them – and also what you think should be done better. And then go ahead, create your own and share it with the world!

Beibamboo video on FundedByMe

Beibamboo (Finland)

 

SoundZoo on FundedByMe

SoundZoo (Denmark)

 

Nerdy by Nerds Jeans on FundedByMe

Nerdy by Nerds Jeans (Sweden)

Crowdfunding Investor profile – Angie Skazka

My favourite thing about crowdfunding investor Angie Skazka is that this case proves again that anyone – even a student – can become a business angel and invest to become part of the next big thing. We asked Angie to participate in our popular crowdfunding investor profile session and convince you why you too should consider this modern type of investment!

Angie Skazka is a crowdfunding investor on FundedByMe

Angie, introduce yourself – what is your background, passions and ‘day job’?

I am 24, Russian-Swedish. I graduated from Ural Federal University as an engineer (5 years) of Industrial Automation and Control Systems. Then I spent 2 years at Real Time Soft, Yekaterinburg, as a SCADA designer and automation developer. At that time I created automated dispatcher systems for ridiculously huge and dangerous ore-processing plants. Particularly enjoying creating user interfaces, I then switched my focus entirely to it by studying on my own and working part-time as a UI-designer in Ocean bank, Moscow. I designed user interfaces for online payment agent Robokassa (Russian analog of Klarna), which are used nowdays by over 10k customers per day and over 22k merchants overall. I also did a year of PHD in Russia, but I quit because I hate research.

Now I am a master student of EIT ICT Labs, studying Interaction Design with first year at KTH and second year in Aalto University, Helsinki. My professional interests include user interface design, infographics, graphic design and entrepreneurship. I aim to build awesome interaction for specific usage contexts and enjoy creating cool data visualizations.

Currently I am a co-founder and usability troll at RunTroll, a real-time multiplayer game that makes it fun to run (I mean physically, with your legs). I believe that entrepreneurship is a way to bring more long-term value to society, and my social aim within RunTroll project is to get people away from computer and TV screens to exercise and be healthy. I spend my free time in Solna climbing center or out in mountains, traversing the snowy peaks and glaciers.

 

How did you first get familiar with crowdfunding and why does it appeal to you?

Daniel the CEO of FundedByMe gave a guest lecture at KTH in one of our courses. Crowdfunding appeals to me because I can invest small amounts of money and get equity in early stage companies before they became ridiculously expensive. Also openness, involvement, connection to startup frontier, networking.

 

Which project(s) on FundedByMe did you invest in? What made you want to get involved?

I invested in FundedByMe and Nerdy by Nerds. The first one has a great idea and promising return, the other one is cute. Unfortunately I missed fire alarms by Elinnovation.

 

What do you expect to get out of these investments on the long run?

I want to sustain myself with return on investments and run my own creative projects without a need to work for money. I want to learn how to invest, get experience, get a network so that I can possibly work or cooperate with people involved in startups.

 

What is the most important tip you’d give other investors considering crowdfunding?

A crazy one: don’t spend weeks of your time to do a proper evaluation. Instead go for quantity with small sums. As long as the revenue model is clear you are pretty much fine to go.

 

Are there any new investment rounds on FundedByMe that you have your eyes on at the moment?

Yes, I am looking mainly for physical stuff: Garpenbergs castle is interesting, Mutewatch already proved their idea with sales, and Rosey is quite close to me since I am a (former) automation engineer.

Crowdfunding Investor Q&A – Siam Choudhury

When we opened the FundedByMe equity crowdfunding round on our site, the first person to invest was Siam Choudhury. Not only is he our first FundedByMe crowdfunding investor, but he is also Mr Small/Medium Business at our favourite social networking platform, Facebook. We asked Siam to share his thoughts and he, most graciously, complied!

Siam-choudhury_crowdfunding_investor

Hello! I’m Siam. I love travelling, good food and tech. The latter pretty much covers my background and my day job as well. I spent years being heavily involved in online communities, particularly around gaming; where I also set up and ran video game websites for a few years. I moved on to work on a startup with a couple of college friends of mine, the now closed-down ParsLibris, a book-sharing community.

With that in the bag, I moved to Dublin 3 years ago to join Facebook, which I guess is my “day job”. At Facebook, I look after the Small & Medium Business segment in the Nordics. This includes acquisition, growth and education among other things.

 

How did you first get familiar with crowdfunding and why does it appeal to you?

I started noticing crowdfunding when projects popped up on the web around areas I’m interested in. There was a video game documentary series up on Kickstarter, a charity campaign on Indiegogo by a webcomic artist and the really cool story of Flippin’ Burgers on FundedByMe.

It’s a really cool concept; helping artists (of different kinds) succeed in bringing their projects to life.

I got even more interested when FundedByMe introduced investing in projects, which takes the step further and allows people to be even more involved in the projects they help fund.

 

Which project(s) on FundedByMe did you invest in? What made you want to get involved?

So far I have invested in FundedByMe itself, because I believe in the product and the people behind it. They’re really passionate and know that they are breaking new ground with what they are doing, and are able to move fast.

My second investment went to Virtuous Vodka. I don’t drink, but I appreciate craftsmanship, and the passion for that really comes through when you look at what Virtuous are doing. They are treating their product and process as a craft, which really appeals to me.

 

What do you expect to get out of these investments on the long run?

Primarily experience. Investments like these allow me to contribute to the businesses in different capacities and to take a peek at how two very different companies work and think. These are also two very solid businesses; so I believe in a long term financial ROI as well.

 

What is the most important tip you’d give other investors considering crowdfunding?

I think it’s important to look at each investment in two ways. What you can learn and get from the investment and equally important, what you can contribute with, aside from the monetary investment. This type of investment is really cool because you get to choose the scale of your investment, both financially and through knowledge. Think about what you have capacity for, and what knowledge and skills you have that would be helpful for the project.

Most importantly, look at projects where you can buy into the passion the entrepreneurs have for their product or service.

 

Are there any new investment rounds on FundedByMe that you have your eyes on at the moment?

There are a lot of great looking projects on the platform now. But if I had to narrow it down to my top 3 picks, I’m keeping an eye on Mutewatch, Beibamboo Oy and Atelier Food Serving AB.

Crowdsourcing article – Kickstarter and FundedByMe

I remember the first time I sat in front of a computer with an internet connection. Even now I am occasionally caught off guard by the same feeling. What should I look for, what’s out there!? The web is huge and development incredibly fast. A good way to get an indication of what is happening now, what both ordinary mortals to pure inventor doing is via two fantastic sites: Kickstarter and FundedByMe Equity. What do they do and what is crowdsourcing?

Read the rest of the article (in Swedish) here.

Crowdsourcing Kickstarter and FundedByMe

Jag minns första gången jag satte framför en dator med uppkoppling. Även nu kan jag stundvis överrumplas av samma känsla. Vad ska jag söka efter, vad finns där ute!? Webben är enorm och utvecklingen otroligt snabb. Ett bra sätt att få en fingervisning om vad som sker just nu, vad både vanliga dödliga till renodlade uppfinnare håller på med är via två fantastiska sajter: Kickstarter och Funded By Me EquityVad gör de och vad är crowdsourcing?

Läs mer här…

Crowdfunding Investor Q&A – Meg Charles-Horn

There is no better way of getting the facts about crowdfunding than from a crowdfunding investor – someone who passionately believes and supports it. When I recently ran into Meg Charles-Horn, who invested in the recent FundedByMe Equity round, I asked her share her views with us. Meg was happy to comply!

Meg Charles-Horn is a crowdfunding investor on FundedByMe

Can you briefly introduce yourself, Meg? What is your background and what are you currently working on?

I moved to Stockholm from New Delhi, India about 18 months ago where I was doing strategy for a foundation focused on building schools in rural India for girls.  I am a US-trained telecom/corporate lawyer and have worked as a partner at a major US law firm, Head of Strategy of a Telecom start-up and have held leadership roles in a global telecom company as well as the GSM Association in London.  I am always looking for new challenges and opportunities to excel – both personally and professionally – and I am passionate about sharing my experiences and knowledge to help others achieve their goals.  With the transition to Stockholm, which is such a vibrant entrepreneurial community, I decided it was time to use my knowledge, experience, skills and a little money to help create new companies. Currently I am an investor in two US-based start-ups – one is Keoyo where I am co-founder. We make ‘@holla’, a social communications app that will launch next month.

FundedByMe is not only my first Swedish investment, but it is also a “passion investment”.  I fervently believe in FundedbyMe’s mission to democratize investment and create a financial path to help people to pursue their dreams.  As an investor, I believe that FundedByMe’s platform and business model will be successful because it is pioneering in an area that has huge potential for growth.

 

How did you first get familiar with crowdfunding and why does it appeal to you?

When I decided to focus on becoming an Angel Investor, about two years ago, I began researching to learn about the options available to find early stage companies in need of smart money.  This was coincidentally the time that Kickstarter started making noises in the US and then of course, the US Jobs Act came into focus.  As I mentioned earlier, I believe in the democratization impact of crowdfunding both for investors and the businesses or projects that can now find funding that would otherwise never get the opportunity to come to market.

 

Which project(s) on FundedByMe did you invest in? What made you want to get involved?

So far I have only invested in FundedByMe on FundedByMe, because it was easy for me to understand the technology platform, the market opportunity and business model.  I am currently considering at least two more investments in areas that I am not as familiar – retail fashion and design.

 

What do you expect to get out of your investments on the long run?

Like all investors I expect, or certainly hope, to get a positive return.  Obviously, investing in an early stage company is always risky.  Any goal for an equity investment other than a positive return is secondary because if the business cannot sustain itself, it will simply die.  That said, the secondary goals can be very important from societal value perspective and have significant impact in the decision to invest.  I believe this is why Kickstarter and traditional crowdfunding have so far been unusually successful.

 

What is the most important tip you’d give other investors considering crowdfunding?

For equity crowdfunding, even though the amounts can be relatively small, I would suggest people invest when they understand how the business will make money and develop sufficient knowledge about the sector so that they understand the risks that the company has to overcome to be successful. Then they should assess the people involved and decide whether they think those people can execute the plan they have laid out.

 

In other words, don’t just blindly follow the crowd.