We’ve all heard of project crowdfunding platforms Kickstarter, Indiegogo, and RocketHub (among many others) to get our projects financed and manufactured. But what if your ‘project’ is a business or, to be more specific, a more robust company to produce multiple projects rather than one? This is the premise behind the new startup-investing platform known as Republic.
Republic allows private US companies to seek investments from the general public utilizing the Jobs Act (Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act) of 2012 under Title III. Also known as the CROWDFUND Act, the initiative offers a way for companies to use crowdfunding to issue securities. Simply put—it’s good for both businesses and those looking to invest in them.
Republic is an offshoot of AngelList—a startup discovery website that lets recruiters snag qualified employees for their business startups. Kendrick Nguyen, Republic’s co-founder, and CEO, previously served as AngelList’s head of legal counsel and started this new platform as a way for new startups to grow through the community.
Any business can apply for funds through Republic, and anyone can help fund whatever business they feel suits them best. On the business side, companies can amass $1 million in funding during the year—meaning, you can have a funding goal of up to that amount per your business according to the law. If you successfully reach your funding goal, you pay 5% of the total funds raised in cash and 2% of the securities you issued. The reason being is that those who funded you receive a financial stake in your company in the form of a security (bonds, stocks, etc.) such as Crowd Safe, thus those that funded your company are entitled to a return (cash or stock). Now, those that invested are not allowed to a return unless your business either goes public or is acquired by another company.
As to be expected, there is a laundry list of requirements that budding startups have to adhere to in just about any funding scenario—crowdfunded or not. That being said, Republic has already had 20 successful ventures with new startups, and the list continues to grow annually. Those looking to invest in one of the featured businesses can render funding for as little as $10, so there’s low risk involved, and you could make a little money for your effort.