Crowdfunding is increasingly popular, but allowing startups to offer equity to the masses in exchange for investment has been a bit problematic, as there are barriers for a number of less-wealthy individuals to enter this market. Nonetheless, startups, such as Finnish project Invesdor, have emerged to make it equity for ordinary people to obtain shares in a company. The concept is not completely unique, but what is notable about this startup is that they have just obtained an MiFiD-level license to operate as an investment firm, which means that they are able to operate across Europe, becoming the first crowdfunding investment platform to do so.
As the company tells me, the logic behind this move is that they operate out of Finland, a country with a population of just 5 million, so they have been looking for a way to expand across Europe. Towards that end, the company says that they are doing a bit of fundraising of their own, but further details on that front will only be revealed in a few weeks.
Invesdor has opted for a hybrid model to generate revenue, taking a flat fee of 500 Euro for companies to list on the platform and then another 6% from the total amount that the companies raise, but only if the companies reach their target. Companies looking to obtain funding must aim for a minimum of 20,000 Euro, while the maximum stands at 1.5 million Euro in an open round or 5 million Euro in a private round.
To date, the startup reports that they have facilitated investment totalling 4.4 million Euro from non-professional investors since the service launched in mid-2012, with more than a million of that being invested during Q1 2015. They also report that their network includes just under 30,000 people, with roughly 4,000 investments having been made through the platform.