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The best source for news and information about crowdfunding for good.

Crowdfunding for Social Good

Devin D. Thorpe

Devin Thorpe

Monthly Archives: September 2016

StartEngine Launches Innovative “Refer and Earn” Contest: Winners Earn Investment Cash and An Elio Car

Press Release – LOS ANGELES – SEPTEMBER 16, 2016StartEngine, the leader in Online Public Offerings, today announced the launch of its innovative investor referral competition. Starting September 23rd, the first person to refer the most investors who join StartEngine by December 31st, 2016 will win a grand prize of $5,000 in StartEngine cash to invest in emerging startups, along with a free Elio Motors vehicle (subject to the vehicles’ being for sale). Other ranking winners (2nd – 5th place) will win $3,000 in StartEngine cash and (6th- 10th place) $1,000 in StartEngine cash.

The launch of this competition follows on the heels of the recent announcement. Their own contest winner, Eric Martin, received 100,000 Jet shares and is now set to be a millionaire after that company was acquired by WalMart in a $3.3 billion deal.

“We are thrilled about launching the first referral competition in our industry as this will excite and engage all types of investors,” Howard Marks, Co-Founder and Executive Chairman of StartEngine said. “Eric Martin is an investor. He made an investment as an ordinary person before the JOBS Act permitted people like him to invest. Today, everyone can too. With OPOs you can go on StartEngine and invest in emerging companies, although everyone may not have Eric’s luck. We need people like Eric to help us spread this message to the world.”

This announcement comes after the new Regulation Crowdfunding (Reg CF) rules went into effect on May 16th, allowing companies on StartEngine to raise up to $1M. Companies on StartEngine were already raising up to $50M through Regulation A+. Both regulations allow accredited and non-accredited investors – the rest of the general population from middle class families, to hard working dads, to minorities – to invest easily in privately held companies for the first time in 80 years. Last February, StartEngine helped Elio Motors raise $17M from 6,600 investor, 94% of which were unaccredited investors.

“People can spread the word and invite their communities to join our momentum through Facebook, Twitter, and other social media channels” Co-Founder and CEO Ron Miller said. “Now that the world of finance has gone online, we are committed to providing solutions that will drive engagement from those looking to capitalize on meaningful investment opportunities, while driving funding to startups and emerging businesses. Our goal is to help entrepreneurs achieve their dreams, while also providing investment opportunities to everyone and through referrals, and, we feel we can accomplish this goal.”

StartEngine also recently announced the StartEngine Marketing Fund, which advances companies that list on StartEngine up to $50,000 to help them market and promote their crowdfunding campaigns. Another incentive program recently announced was StartEngine’s fee-free Small OPO program (under Reg CF).

To learn more about the programs designed to help businesses reduce the cost of raising capital visit the StartEngine Blog.

About StartEngine

StartEngine is the leader in OPOs (Online Public Offerings), connecting Millennials and aspiring investors with tomorrow’s progressive companies. Based in Los Angeles, the company was created in 2013 by Howard Marks, co-founder of Activision, and Ron Miller. StartEngine aims to revolutionize the startup business model by helping individuals invest in private companies on a public platform for the first time in history, thereby helping entrepreneurs achieve their dreams.

Khushi Baby: Give Wearable, Digital Health To Rural India

A baby holding the first version of the Khushi Baby App

A baby holding the first version of the Khushi Baby App

Here’s how your CSR Funding can revolutionise the entire maternal and child health spectrum in rural India and create a comprehensive and secure mobile health platform.

This cause is featured on Fund My Project as part of‘s collaboration with

This cause is featured on Fund My Project as part of‘s collaboration with

Project by: Khushi Baby

Funding Required: INR 15 Lacs

Here’s what the folks at Khushi Baby have to say about this Project:

We’re Khushi Baby, and we want to close the world’s maternal and child health care gap at the last mile.

Two years ago, we designed a system that makes medical history wearable. Mothers and their infants get a necklace that stores a copy of their data digitally. Health workers can read and update this data at the point of care, without needing to be connected to the internet, by simply scanning the necklace. Health workers use the app to collect and act upon verifiable patient health records, and later send this data at the end of the day to health administrators who use our dashboard for decision making and community engagement.


What have we done so far?

Thanks to our first successful 2014 Kickstarter campaign that raised $31,500, Khushi Baby rolled out a pilot project in 2015, tracking 1500 children and over 15,000 vaccination events. The project was also made possible by winning Yale’s 2014 Thorne Prize for Social Innovation in Health, and Johns Hopkins Future Health System’s Young Research Grant.

The preliminary results from this fieldwork were very positive. We have seen the median time decrease from one month to less than 60 hours per child, and we have good evidence showing the necklace was better retained than the paper card and more widely discussed. This means there is potential that the necklace can become a talking point within the community to increase awareness in pockets where demand for immunization may be low.

So, what now?

We’ve been hard at work redesigning our system from the ground up to go from collecting information on just infant vaccines to covering the entire maternal and child health spectrum, starting with pregnancy and family planning.

Khushi Baby team members Ruchit and Pawan distributing Khushi Baby necklaces in the village of Undithal

Khushi Baby team members Ruchit and Pawan distributing Khushi Baby necklaces in the village of Undithal

Now, we are ready to put our newly designed system to the test.

In order to receive further validation, we are going to implement the Khushi Baby System on a larger scale. We are moving into 300+ villages with our 2.0 system in September, this time with the District Government of Udaipur.

That means over 33,000 mothers and children will encounter the KB system by the end of 2017.

Mother and son pose after he received his Khushi Baby necklace

Mother and son pose after he received his Khushi Baby necklace

Over 100 health workers and health admins will use our system this fall. And this represents a step towards our larger vision as the Udaipur District follows national guidelines upheld by Districts throughout India. We aim to to create the most comprehensive and secure mobile health platform for maternal and child health not only for Rajasthan, but for the world.

But we need your help to achieve this goal.

Our current budget only guarantees 10% of the necklaces needed to reach 33,000 mothers and children. With your help, we can ensure that all mothers and children impacted by our study will receive the Khushi Baby necklace to protect against vaccine-preventable diseases. 90% of all funds will directly go to purchasing necklaces for these patients we expect to see at the camps we are working in.

No one, especially mothers and their babies, should be denied informed care based on an incomplete understanding of their medical history.

Team Khushi Baby



KB Team Members Deepa, Preethi, Farhana, Sara and Ruchit in Udaipur, India

KB Team Members Ujjwal, Zara and Pawan on a recent trip to the field

KB Team Members Ujjwal, Zara and Pawan on a recent trip to the field

KB Tech call with Daniel, Doma, Shahnawaz, Nishant, Tanooj, Ujjwal, and Ruchit

KB Tech call with Daniel, Doma, Shahnawaz, Nishant, Tanooj, Ujjwal, and Ruchit

Besides conducting a randomized controlled trial, in the past year we have also gone on to win the 2015 UNICEF Wearables for Good Challenge and participate in their inaugural incubator. Khushi Baby was additionally awarded a 250K Impact Evaluation grant from 3ie and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to conduct a larger trial, recognized as one of the top 100 social enterprises of 2016 worldwide by Classy, and selected as a Pace-Setter Innovation for GAVI’s INFUSE Challenge to be strategically backed for scale up.

UNICEF, ARM, and Frog Wearables for Good Challenge Incubation Program

UNICEF, ARM, and Frog Wearables for Good Challenge Incubation Program

By supporting us you will directly be providing Khushi Baby health records (digital necklaces) to tens of thousands of mothers and their babies in rural Udaipur so we can track their health to the last mile.

For just INR 75 (just over $1) donated, one mother or baby will receive a digital necklace that will allow community health workers to reliably provide them due care based on an accurate and accessible medical history.

Thank you to those who make our work possible.

We’ve been guided along the way by UNICEF Innovation, Frog, Andela, ARM, FactoryX, Cooley, PCH (collectively the UNICEF Incubator), and institutions such as: Yale’s Center for Engineering Innovation and Design, Yale’s School of Management, Yale’s Entrepreneurial Institute, Yale School of Public Health, Indian Institute of Health Management Research Jaipur, and Johns Hopkins Future Health Systems. And we’re excited to be working with more strategic partners – GAVI, Safran, Mobisoft, and the District of Udaipur – to build and refine our system to one day empower all 250,000 ANMs in India and nurses beyond our borders. And of course we are thankful for those who have supported us so far, in particular 3ie/BMGF>


Want to Fund this Project?

Visit here and support the cause.

Looking for funding?

If you have a social project that’s high on innovation and impact, but running low on financial fuel, do write in to Nidhi Singh at with your proposal, and we’ll feature it on FUND MY PROJECT.

Re-published here as part of Your Mark On The World’s collaboration with



Play Party Picks Los Angeles Sisters for The Ball’s VP Candidate

Press Release – BERKELEY, CA – The Ball, aka “One World Futbol,” today named 12-year-old Taylor Jackson and her 7-year-old sister, Jordyn, as its Vice Presidential running mates. The Los Angeles-area sisters generated significant online support to claim the position as The Ball’s sidekick in its run for President of the United States.

The Ball is running on the three-pronged Play Party Platform to mandate a minimum of 15 minutes of play every day for everyone, everywhere; to provide equal play opportunities for boys and girls and to end play deprivation everywhere it exists. One hundred percent of campaign funds raised will go toward donating balls to Coaches Across Continents, Futbol por La Paz and Playworks.

The Jackson sisters were in school when their mother, Denise, received the call alerting her that they’d been tapped for VP, and photojournalists were unable to record their reaction to the news in real time. But according to Denise, they are “…over the moon at the great news!”

Play Party officials are currently coordinating schedules with the Jackson sisters, who are busy playing soccer and planning a fundraising event for Soaring Samaritans Youth Movement, the non-profit humanitarian organization they founded to deliver sports balls to underserved children worldwide.


In a recent interview, Taylor explained why she and her sister were so keen to fulfill their duties as The Ball’s sidekick: “We founded our charity to fulfill the same purpose of helping youth with positive play. We are a sister team on a mission to help make the world a better place by uniting with people and organizations that want to make a difference for children everywhere. We feel it is important to support uplifting, like-minded organizations such as Coaches Across Continents, Futbol por la Paz and Playworks to help children build community, develop a sense of self-worth and stay healthy through physical exercise.”

The One World Futbol is designed to withstand harsh and remote environments without the need for pumping up, ever. Its existence was inspired by refugee children in Darfur playing soccer with a ball made of trash. One World Play Project makes and sells the durable soccer balls through a buy-one-give-one model that generates ball donations for organizations that spread play to children all over the globe.

About One World Play Project

One World Play Project is a mission-driven business that aims to champion play in all its forms, anywhere and everywhere. We make, sell and distribute products and services to enable play around the world, especially for those living in the harshest environments where play is nearly non-existent. The company is a B Corporation, harnessing the power of business for social good. Collaborating with sponsors, organizations and individuals, One World Play Project has brought the power of play to more than 48 million youth in over 175 countries worldwide.

Chevrolet is an official sponsor of One World Play Project. Together, the partners will donate 2 million Chevrolet-branded One World Futbols by the end of 2018, bringing the power of play to an estimated 60 million youth around the world.

One World Play Project is headquartered in Berkeley, CA with distribution centers in Fremont, CA and Voerde, Germany. For more information, visit or check out our community on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram.

FAN Fund and Florida Funders Complete $1M Investment for PikMyKid

FAN Fund’s seventh investment provides capital for growing Tampa-based education technology company

Press Release – Orlando, FL (September 13, 2016) – FAN Investors Fund I, LP (FAN Fund) and Florida Funders have completed $1 million investment in PikMyKid, a mobile and web-based platform that simplifies the after-school dismissal and pick-up process.

PikMyKid, based in Tampa, Florida, allows parents to notify school administrators about changes in their child’s pickup times. School administrators use the platform to manage pickup queues and notify parents when their child has been picked up, by whom, and by what method of travel. Prior to PikMyKid, no efficient tracking system for student dismissal status and communication with parents and caregiver existed.

PikMyKid is currently deployed in more than 50 schools in 14 states. In the schools where it is deployed, 80% of parents and caregivers use the platform. Its mobile application has been downloaded more than 60,000 times.

“Our decision to invest was supported by PikMyKid’s expanding user base and the high levels of engagement and customer satisfaction that the solution achieves,” said Mitchel Laskey, managing director of FAN Fund. “We are excited to work with the team on further development of their growth strategy.”

The FAN Fund and Florida Funders co-led the initial closing of the $980,000 round for PikMyKid. PikMyKid will use the investments for continued product development, marketing and customer acquisition and the company plans to add several full-time employees.

“After watching CEO Pat Bhava lead and grow PikMyKid over the last two years, we are thrilled to partner with FAN Fund and provide Pat with the capital necessary to reach his next level of growth,” said Marc Blumenthal, CEO of Florida Funders. “In addition to capital, we’ll continue to provide advice and connections on executing his next steps for growth.”

This investment is the seventh for the FAN Fund since commencing operations on November 1, 2015. In the initial ten months, the FAN Fund deployed $1,850,000 in financing rounds that totaled approximately $8 million.

About FAN Fund:

The FAN Fund invests professionally managed committed angel capital in growth-oriented, seed, and early-stage companies in the technology and life science sectors in Florida. The Fund both lead and participate in syndications with other angels and investment groups, and takes a hands-on approach with its portfolio companies. For additional information please see

About Florida Funders:

Florida Funders blends the best of equity crowdfunding, angel investing and venture capital to make investing easier for accredited investors and early-stage capital more accessible to Florida companies. For more information visit

About PikMyKid:

PikMyKid provides a communication portal to simplify student dismissal process in K-12 schools, increasing teacher efficiency & student security while reducing traffic around schools. PikMyKid’s cloud-based software as a service eliminates conventional sticky notes, clipboards, walkie-talkies, and loud hailers reducing confusion and noise while increasing efficiency and security. An engaging application and a hardware agnostic solution, requiring no RFID tags or custom installation, has allowed the company to grow rapidly from two Florida schools in August 2015 to schools in 14 states. For more information please visit

FARM FRESH: Green Sense Farms Set Start Engine Crowdfunding Record; Hits Goal in less than One Day

Press Release – (Portage, IN) September, 7, 2016 — Green Sense Farms, the country’s largest network of commercial indoor vertical farms launched an equity crowdfunding campaign on Start Engine to share their unique offering with their community.

The Campaign, which launched last week, reached their goal in just one day, the campaign can be found here,

Green Sense Farms grows produce indoors which drastically reduces land use by growing on multi-level platforms. Using sustainable farming practices, the Green Sense Farms growing method has minimal impact to the environment and can grow leafy green vegetable faster than field farms with less water and pesticide, herbicide and GMO free.

According to a 2015 report by the United Nations, the world’s population size in 2050 is expected to reach 9.7 billion. While those numbers are set to increase, so are rising surface temperatures and worsening droughts caused by severe weather patterns. Changes in climate are already reducing the amount of arable land and rising urban populations are depleting aquifers, creating a need for more sustainable farming solutions.

Founder and CEO of Green Sense Farms, Robert Colangelo, has already set the wheels in motion for this much needed solution. “We’re not subject to rain or drought. We precisely control the indoor environment, to create the perfect conditions for our plants to grow year-round, every single day.”

Another benefit of growing indoors in a climate-controlled environment is that you can harvest large quantities of leafy green produce each week. By locating these farms at or near produce distribution centers and on institutional campuses wherever large volume of meals are served daily, produce is fresher and the miles food travels from the farm to the table is reduced. This truly is the future of not just green farming, but a farming solution to meet growing populations and changing global weather patterns.

Colangelo now invites investors become a part of the Green Sense Farms community and family “Green Sense Farms has been the fortunate recipient of numerous stories about our exciting innovative indoor vertical farming technology. All this press has generated many inquiries from individuals asking how they can invest in our sustainable farm. We’re pleased to announce that the recently released crowdfunding regulations now allow for individuals to make direct equity investments in growth companies like ours. This is your chance to own a piece of Green Sense Farms. Just as Green Sense Farms has disrupted produce distribution and cut out the middleman, the new crowdfunding regulations have democratized the capital markets, allowing individuals the opportunity to take advantage of public offerings without the use of traditional stock brokers.”

The crowdfund will be hosted on for an estimated duration of 60 days.

Green Sense Farms is located in Portage, Indiana—40 miles outside of Chicago and has created innovation partnerships with Philips, Hortimax, Rijk Zwaan, Desert Aire and Dramm. The company has also formed a business partnership with Infinite Herbs. Find more information on their website at


Green Sense Farms is the country’s largest commercial indoor vertical farm. The company provides nutritious and delicious produce that’s good for people and the planet. Because Green Sense Farms creates conditions that are always perfect for growing, they’re able to harvest year-round, using a fraction of the land, water, and fertilizer of traditional field farming. These sustainable farming practices make Green Sense Farms a local solution to a global challenge.

About Equity Crowdfunding: October 30, 2015 – The Securities and Exchange Commission adopted final rules to permit companies to offer and sell securities through crowdfunding.

May 16, 2016 – Title lll of the JOBS Act, otherwise known as Regulation Crowdfunding of REG CF, legalizes retail investment crowdfunding.

Now Anybody Can Try Being a Venture Capitalist

Equity Crowdfunding Comes Of Age: Seedrs Announces First-Ever Portfolio Results, With an Overall 14.44% IRR (Annualized Rate of Return)

  • Seedrs has today published its first Portfolio Update, looking at the characteristics and performance of the 253 deals funded on Seedrs platform between its launch in July 2012 and the end of 2015.
  • Landmark analysis shows for the first time that, on a fair value basis, equity crowdfunding through Seedrs has produced better annualised rates of return (IRRs) than most other asset classes.
  • Platform-wide IRR increases from 14.44% to 41.87% when impacts of SEIS and EIS tax reliefs are taken into account.
  • Investors with portfolios of 20 or more investments have outperformed the market on average, with average IRRs of 15.01% (43.39% when tax-adjusted).
  • Valuation process confirmed by Ernst & Young LLP (EY) as conforming to the industry-standard International Private Equity Valuation (IPEV) Guidelines.

Seedrs, Europe’s No. 1 equity crowdfunding platform, has today published an in-depth, ground-breaking analysis of the deals funded on its platform.

Its Portfolio Update looks at the characteristics and performance of the 253 deals funded on the Seedrs platform between its launch in July 2012 and the end of 2015. In addition to revealing useful information about the types of deals funded through Seedrs, the Portfolio Update shows that Seedrs investments have, on a fair value basis, outperformed most other asset classes.

Highlights include the following:

Deal Characteristics

  • Roughly 40% of Seedrs’s deals have been for digital businesses, and 20% for non-digital. The remaining 40% have been hybrid digital/non-digital models.
  • Nearly 60% of its deals have been for B2C businesses, with 30% for B2B ones and the remaining 10% for businesses with both B2C and B2B models.
  • Of Seedrs’s 15 sectors, the three most popular in terms of number of funded deals have been Food & Beverage (11% of deals), Finance & Payments (11%) and Travel, Leisure & Sport (10%).

Investment Performance

  • The platform-wide internal rate of return (IRR), which means the annualised performance of all 253 deals in terms of share price appreciation (net of fees), as of 31 July 2016 was 14.44% on a non-tax-adjusted basis. When the impacts of tax reliefs and liabilities are taken into account, this goes up to 41.87%.
  • Investors who have built portfolios of 20 or more investments have, on average, outperformed the overall market. They have achieved an average 15.01% nontax- adjusted IRR (tax-adjusted: 43.39%).
  • Businesses with hybrid digital/non-digital elements to their models have performed better than pure digital and pure non-digital businesses on average, achieving a non-tax-adjusted IRR of 16.88% (tax-adjusted: 42.78%).
  • Businesses with both B2B and B2C models have outperformed pure B2B and B2C businesses on average, with an 18.27% non-tax-adjusted IRR (tax-adjusted: 41.74%).
  • The three best performing sectors to date have been Food & Beverage, with a 22.77% non-tax-adjusted IRR (tax-adjusted: 49.73%); Home & Personal, with a 17.79% non-tax-adjusted IRR (tax-adjusted: 57.76%); and Finance & Payments, with a 16.91% non-tax-adjusted IRR (tax-adjusted: 43.20%).

Ernst & Young LLP (EY) reviewed the procedures and processes used by Seedrs for determining the estimates of fair value used to calculate the investment performance numbers, and EY considers that they are in line with the industry guidance set forth in the International Private Equity Valuation (IPEV) Guidelines.

It is worth observing that Seedrs was able to obtain much of the information required to make these fair value determinations, in a robust and verifiable way, by exercising the information rights it holds in its capacity as nominee for each investment. One of the benefits to investors in Seedrs acting as nominee—and entering into subscription and/or shareholders agreements with each investee company—is that the platform has reliable access to ongoing information about the performance of the investments. Platforms and networks that do not have the comprehensive information rights granted in these agreements do not have access to the same level of information.

Jeff Lynn, CEO and Co-founder of Seedrs comments: “The release of this Portfolio Update is momentous for Seedrs. I co-founded the business in 2009 because I am a strong believer that a portfolio of early-stage investments can produce great returns for investors large and small. Now, for the first time, we have the data to prove it. The Seedrs portfolio has achieved an IRR in excess of nearly every other asset class, and that’s even without taking into account the impact of tax reliefs. As importantly, our active investors have shown that, on average, they can beat the market, using Seedrs to build portfolios of outperformers. It is difficult to overstate the importance of this data: it is a game-changer for us and for the many investors from all over Europe (and, soon, the United States) who allocate capital through our platform.”

Seedrs investor Robin Vaudrey, Head of CEE Region at the European Investment Fund (EIF) in Luxembourg, says: “My work at the EIF, the largest investor into European venture capital, has brought me close to the cutting edge of European technology and innovation, but until I came across Seedrs the opportunity to personally invest in such exciting new ventures did not exist given the traditional barriers to investing in private companies. I find the investment propositions attractive even without any additional tax incentives, as I am resident on the Continent and not a UK taxpayer. I find the level of professionalism of most other investors, the fundraising entrepreneurs, and the Seedrs platform itself, to be very high. I’m particularly pleased Seedrs uses private equity industry best practice for valuations.”

Seedrs investor Julian Sutton, a financial consultant based in London, says: “Seedrs offers me an exciting opportunity to build a diverse investment portfolio in a previously inaccessible asset class. So far, as you would expect, some businesses have not succeeded, but many are showing strong paper returns. Short term I can claim up to 50% tax relief from eligible campaigns, long term I hope for significant gains.”

Gray Stern, Co-Founder of Seedrs alumnus Landbay, says: “Seedrs has enabled us to raise funds quickly and efficiently in line with our growth trajectory, at the same time giving us exposure to a new and valuable network of customers vested in our success. We look forward to continuing to offer our shares via the platform as we move towards our goal of becoming a leading UK mortgage lender. It’s a big vision, and not without risk, and Seedrs has given investors who believe in our ability to execute a chance to be involved from the very beginning.”

Steven Renwick, CEO and Co-Founder of Seedrs alumnus Satago, says: “Without my Seedrs investors, Satago would simply not exist today. To date I have delivered substantial appreciation on paper for our investors, and my intention is to continue to drive this higher by the time investors’ gains are realised.”

Seedrs has now funded more than 380 deals since launch in July 2012,* with more than £150 million invested on the platform to date. According to Beauhurst, a leading third-party source of objective deep data on UK startups and scale ups, Seedrs is the UK’s most active investor in private companies.

Metropole Capital Group: The Future Is Now — Redefining Access to Capital

Press Release – LOS ANGELES, CA –(Marketwired – August 30, 2016) – The 5th annual Global Alternative Funding Forum is set on November 11, 2016, from 8 AM to 6:30 PM at the Skirball Center, Los Angeles, CA 90049. This exclusive thought-leadership annual gathering with a think-tank theme is known worldwide for bringing together the world class financiers, the most prominent business leaders, private investors, government officials and other top experts and powerful authorities in the field of capital formation for young ventures and emerging growth companies.

Here, Victoria Silchenko, Forum creator and producer, educator & leading alternative funding expert, founder of Metropole Capital Group, is sharing her observations.

“Our one-of-a-kind Forum, with its 360 degree view of innovative financing options for entrepreneurial ventures, continues to be a powerful force worldwide in changing the status quo as we strive in all our efforts to bridge the worlds of alternative and traditional finance to foster entrepreneurship, creativity and innovations,” Victoria noted. “We believe that progress happens only through engagement with ALL vital parts of the financial system and are delighted to bring together a truly unique collection of the most influential and forward-looking authorities, ‘entrepreneurial-friendly’ investors, and leading players in FinTech & capital markets,” Victoria continued.

Key topics for discussion 2016 include:

  • Redefining Securities Distribution through Crowdfinance
  • Alternative Funding Tools, Access to Liquidity and the Rise of Venture Exchanges
  • Funding Options Under the JOBS Act: Building Brand Loyalty via Stock-Ownership
  • Royalties as the Alternative Way for Both Investing and Financing
  • Federal and Corporate Financing Programs in support of SMB
  • EB-5 Programs
  • Artificial Intelligence and the Rise of Robotics in Financial Services
  • The Changing Face of Angel Investors
  • Venture Capitalists on the Future of Venture Capital
  • How Blockchain is Transforming Venture Financing Industry

“We are in the early days of a revolution that will make capital markets work again for the growth economy. We have a lot more work to do to bring back the ecosystem that once made the United States equities markets the envy of markets around the world,” noted David Weild, the “father” of the JOBS Act, and speaker at the fifth Alternative Global Alternative Funding Forum.

“We’re excited and honored to be a part of Metropole Capital’s event. The landscape of fundraising has shifted drastically in the past three years, with more access as well as potential pitfalls. There is no better event for founders to understand the business and legal implications of fundraising than this forum,” stated Kendrick Nguyen, Co-Founder & CEO at Republic.

There are 40 speakers expected including:

  • Cromwell Coulson – President, CEO & Director, OTC Markets Group, Inc.
  • David Weild IV – Founder, Chairman & CEO of Weild & Co; known as the “father” of the JOBS Act
  • Vivian Shimoyama – Regional Executive Director for 10,000 Small Businesses
  • Arthur Lipper – World renowned financier, author, inventor, investor and philanthropist
  • Kendrick Nguyen – Co-Founder & CEO at Republic, an offshoot of AngelList/Regulation CF platform
  • Connie Harrell – Angel Investor, Region President of Keiretsu Forum Southern California
  • Michael G. Homeier – Founding Shareholder @ Homeier Law PC with focus on venture financing & EB-5
  • Jullian Sidoti – Partner at Trowbridge Sidoti, LLP/
  • Dara Albright – President of Dara Albright Media, Co-founder of FinFair & LendIt conferences
  • Sam Guzik – Founder at Guzik & Associates, Legislative & Regulatory Special Counsel for CfPA
  • Kim Kaselionis – FinTech Pioneer, Managing Partner at Breakaway Funding
  • DJ Paul – Founder of DJP&Co, co-chair of Crowdfunding Intermediary Regulatory Advocates (CFIRA)
  • James Jones – National Speaker, Author, Educator for Retirement Planning and Self-Directed IRA’s
  • Mona DeFrawi‏ – Founder at InsideVenture (acquired by SecondMarket), & GrowthSTARS Media
  • Josh Maher – Angel Investor, Author of “Startup Wealth: How the Best Angel Investors Make Money . . .”
  • Manny Fernandez – Angel Investor, Micro VC & Equity Crowdfunding Pioneer,
  • Greg Bohlen – VC, Managing General Partner at Union Grove Venture
  • David Josephson – Managing Director/ Western Region/ EXIM Bank
  • David Hornik – VC at August Capital, Creator of VentureBlog & VentureCast

The Master of Ceremonies will be Sandro Monetti, managing editor of the Los Angeles Business Journal, and a CNN and BBC contributor and television host.

Early bird registration for the full-day conference, 8 AM to 6:30 PM is $195 until September 15. Sign up by going to Twitter @MetropoleGlobal

The story was originally posted here.

Bobbi Rebell Launches Book With Fully Funded Crowdfunding Campaign for Teachers

You can download an audio podcast here or subscribe via iTunes.

Bobbi Rebell, Reuters financial news television anchor and author of the new book How to Be a Financial Grownup, is launching the book with a fully funded crowdfunding campaign for teachers and students via DonorsChoose. You get to give without giving!

Here’s how it works. 1) You buy a copy of the book. 2) You post about it the purchase on social media including a link to the crowdfunding campaign on DonorsChoose. 3) Send screen grabs of your receipt and your post to Bobbie here. 4) You will receive a gift code for $18 allowing you to back a teacher’s project to benefit students without using any of your own money! (Of course, there are some teachers who are hoping you might add a few bucks of your own.) See complete rules here.

Bobbi wrote her new book to be of help to more than just teachers and their students. As a financial news reporter, she sees a crisis brewing in America.

“We are in an economic crisis because so few of us know the basics about how to manage our financial lives as adults. Americans want to get better at paying attention to—and managing—their money, but with a lack of financial literacy education and information overload thanks to the internet, it has become a daunting and overwhelming task. We need to make financial education accessible, compelling and inviting so we can finally start acting like financial grownups,” she says.

It was important to her that her book be accessible to readers. “I wrote How to Be a Financial Grownup specifically as a book people would actually read. It is fun. At first it even might be mistaken for a personal finance ‘beach read,’ but it is anything but. The advice is serious and specific.”

“The stories are raw, real and, at times, shocking. Most of the early feedback I have received includes an example of how the reader made an immediate change based on the book’s recommendations, and got results. It has already been incredibly gratifying,” she adds.

Getting a new book into the hands of readers is difficult even for a public figure like Bobbi. She says, “The challenge is that there is an overwhelming amount of content out there, and it is tough to break through. I hope that between the incredible stories from inspiring role models, and my own efforts to get the word out, the book will raise awareness.”

She also hopes that the launch can raise real money for “I also hope it will bolster my efforts to raise money for teachers that have made financial literacy a priority through” HighTower/Elliot Weissbluth is co-sponsoring the Donors Choose campaign.

DonorsChoose’s founder Charles Best is featured in the book as a role model of financial literacy.

Bobbi says, “I believe the issue of financial literacy is beginning to gain more and more advocates, including several of the role models in my book, among them Tony Robbins, Kevin O’Leary, Amanda Steinberg, Sally Krawcheck, Bob Moritz and of course’s Charles Best.”

Bobbi envisions her book as a key part of the solution to America’s problem with financial illiteracy. “Without a clear understanding of the basics of finance, we cannot improve the economic well-being of millions of Americans. Only 17 states require that high school students take a class in personal finance, according to the Council for Economic Education. How can we expect our young people to be financial grownups if we don’t give them the tools to be successful? How to Be a Financial Grownup is one of those tools,” she concludes.

On Wednesday, September 7, 2016 at 1:00 Eastern, Bobbi will join me here for a live interview to discuss her book and the crowdfunding campaign. Tune in here then to watch the interview live. Post questions in the comments below or tweet questions before the interview to @devindthorpe.

Bobbi Rebell, author of "How to Be a Financial Grownup"

Bobbi Rebell, author of “How to Be a Financial Grownup”

More about How to Be a Financial Grownup:

How to Be a Financial Grownup provides a fresh, new approach to getting readers to pay attention to their money and take action. Just as parents sneak veggies into sweet treats to get their kids the nutrition they need, How to Be a Financial Grownup is designed to draw in readers with can’t-resist stories from incredibly successful Role Models, and then turn their attention to specific solutions readers can use to improve their financial well-being.

Bobbi’s bio:

Twitter: @bobbirebell

Bobbi Rebell is an award-winning journalist and advocate for financial literacy. She currently leads the U.S. business video unit for Reuters, the largest news organization in the world. In that role she anchors business reports, interviews top newsmakers and reports on breaking news. Her work is syndicated globally and seen by millions of viewers on Reuters broadcast and online clients. Bobbi also writes a globally syndicated personal finance column on millennials.

Her work has appeared on hundreds of media outlets including Reuters, Fox, CNBC, CNN,,,, Yahoo Finance, Huffington Post, USA Today,,,, PBS, and many more. She began her business news career as an intern at CNN, where she worked with top journalists including Maria Bartiromo, Lou Dobbs and Stuart Varney. Her first job was at CNBC, after which she went on to work at CNN and Nightly Business Report.

Bobbi has interviewed hundreds of the world’s business leaders, some of whom have contributed to her first book “HOW TO BE A FINANCIAL GROWNUP: Proven advice from High Achievers on How to Live Your Dreams and Have Financial Freedom.” The book uses memorable stories to teach basic financial skills, inspiring readers to take control of their finances, and successfully navigate financial adulthood.

Bobbi is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania. She holds a Certificate in Financial Planning from New York University. She lives in New York City with her husband, their son, her teenage stepkids, and morkie Waffles.

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Devin is a journalist, author and corporate social responsibility speaker who calls himself a champion of social good. With a goal to help solve some of the world’s biggest problems by 2045, he focuses on telling the stories of those who are leading the way! Learn more at!



Crowdfunding Campaign Helps Low Income Students Have a Chance to Excel In Math

GraphLock, is developing a game changing app to save students and parents the cost and hassle of carrying a calculator while preserving testing integrity.

Press Release – August 25, 2016 – On August 31st, GraphLock will start a campaign through IndieGoGo to build awareness for equality in education and promote their app launch this November. Patrons can donate $5 either to pre-order the app or every $5 donated will fund a free download for a low income student or school.

In response to the increasing opportunity gap in the classroom and the growing popularity of smartphones, Math Professor Mallory Dyer, witnessed many of her students struggling in her classroom due to an inbuilt inefficiency: separate calculators for testing. These calculators that students and parents are forced to buy for algebra, higher math and standardized tests, are bulky, outdated and very expensive – often costing over $100 apiece. With the superior processing power and sleekness that today’s smartphones and tablets have there is nearly no reason for a stand-alone calculator. The only remaining argument is the inability of calculators to access the internet, making them the more secure technology for testing centers. Yet even this point is falling as calculators like the TI-Nspire are becoming testing-illegal as they start to gain internet capabilities.

In an effort to promote equality in education, Mallory Dyer set out to find a secure and affordable solution to end this trend. She created GraphLock, a full-fledged, multi-platform, scientific and graphing calculator app with a testing-safe lockdown mode. What sets this safe mode apart from the competitors is its unique ability to prevent users from accessing other apps aside from an emergency call button. This level of confinement may sound scary to some users but the app has several safeguards. When the app first enters lockdown mode, a duration and unique code is entered and a student joins a session monitored by an authority figure (teacher, parent, or proctor.) Lockdown ends when the time expires or the teacher, parent, or proctor simply unlocks the user from the session. This is the key to a secure environment as teachers can input the duration of the exam or class and create a unique session to keep students from accessing forbidden resources.

The benefits that will come with the integration of this app are enormous.

  • Students will not forget their calculators.
  • Students will not be forced to spend large amounts of money for testing integrity.
  • Students will not be at a disadvantage because they do not have or cannot afford the latest calculator.

With GraphLock everything is secure, fair, and inexpensive, allowing all users excellent computing power through a device they had anyways.

GraphLock’s mission is to create equal conditions that give every student the chance and opportunity to reach their full potential. It is time to revolutionize math education and support students everywhere, one download at a time.

For more information

Twitter: @graphlock

Run The Ladakh Half-Marathon For ‘TARA Girls’ With Us

Here’s how your CSR Funding can help brighten the lives of underprivileged girls in North India.

This cause is featured on Fund My Project as part of‘s collaboration with

This cause is featured on Fund My Project as part of‘s collaboration with

Project by: Saamir Gupta & Vishal Lahoti – Management Consulting Professionals at Accenture Strategy, Cross-fit L-1 Trainers, Globetrotters, Movie Buffs & Big fans of kids at TARA!

Location: New Delhi

Funding Required: INR 5 Lacs

Here’s what Saamir Gupta & Vishal Lahoti to say about his Project:

Most giving is 80% emotion and 20% rational. And the best way to get to someone’s emotions is to tell a story. So here is the story of TARA

A french child psychologist visits India and happens to see kids sleeping at pavement of New Delhi Railway Station. He stays back to start a home for a handful (~20) of underprivileged boys.. a HOME, “TARA” and not an institution. He provides the boys quality education, security, complete health care and a real opportunity to carve a bright future. These boys, turning to young adults facing the world as equals, with confidence far more than most of us.

We have been associated with TARA for over 5 years now! We have seen not just TARA boys evolve into TARA big birds (young adults) embracing the world but also the extension of TARA to TARA Tots (kids below 6 years of age) and now TARA Girls. All of this, in spite of all the hardships including limited funding, serious health issues with some kids, stringent policies, and compliance issues in India.


Saamir has been running for TARA for a long time, but always in Delhi. This time Vishal challenged Saamir to take inspiration from TARA and the kids and make the journey much more difficult and hence much more rewarding! Saamir hates height and mountains and this would be his first time to Ladakh. But if TARA can excel in being an excellent home to these underprivileged kids, if these kids can shun their past and compete with the world as equals, all our friends and family can come together and support this noble cause… running 21 kms in Himalayas is the least Saamir and Vishal can do.

You are contributing directly to the fantastic education of these girls (mind you – they can beat you anytime in French), their super nutritious meals and regular maintenance of their home.

If possible, please do plan a quick visit to any of TARA shelter homes to see how meaningful your contribution is for these kids.

Very apt lines from Winston Churchill for the context – “We make a living by what we get, But we make a life by what we give.”

Want to Fund this Project?

Visit here and support the cause.

Looking for funding?

If you have a social project that’s high on innovation and impact, but running low on financial fuel, do write in to Nidhi Singh at with your proposal, and we’ll feature it on FUND MY PROJECT.

Re-published here as part of Your Mark On The World’s collaboration with

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