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The rise of crowdfunding: 10 things to know

The rise of crowdfunding: 10 things to know | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Crowdfunding platforms are changing the way we finance projects and services, but the laws surrounding them are still ambiguous. Here are 10 facts to get you up to speed.

Crowdfunding is a tool that allows anyone -- be it startup founders, musicians, artists, students, children, or even someone in a developing country who lacks basic electricity -- to attract a pool of people via the internet to invest in their business idea. A funding target is established, and rewards to backers are offered.This new type of startup business model has the opportunity to disrupt industries and change the way we determine success and let the best ideas flourish, rather than the best access to capital. It's exciting, because the venture capital model that powers Silicon Valley and the global startup scene is inherently biased based on geography and connections. According to the Small Business Administration, about 600,000 new businesses are started in the US every year. The number of startups funded by VCs? 300. That means 99.95% of entrepreneurs won't get funded.To affect real change, we have to understand the basics: what defines crowdfunding, how it works best, and how the current laws shape what's possible. We also need to look at the ways the law is changing and what it means for the future of crowdfunding.Here is a list of the 10 most important things to know about this important new buzzword.

To read the full article, click on the title or image.



Get your Free Business Plan Template here: http://bit.ly/1aKy7km


Via Marc Kneepkens
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Marc Kneepkens's curator insight, April 30, 2014 8:44 AM

Startup or small business looking for funding? Here is a great introduction to crowdfunding, with links to funding platforms and a good overview of how crowdfunding works.

Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street
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The Top 25 Banks By Innovation Capability

The Top 25 Banks By Innovation Capability | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Life is tough as a startup! The Disruption House is nonetheless pleased to publish its first public paper a report on banking innovation. The report
Richard Platt's insight:

Great research for on the quality and level of innovation in the banking and FinTech domains

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The Future of Money

The Future of Money | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
A "mobile money" revolution has swept Kenya, where people can send and receive money on their cell phones. It's improved commerce and brought basic necessities to poorer areas
Richard Platt's insight:

You may be surprised to learn there's one country that adopted mobile money years ago: Kenya. Here in the U.S., we can use smartphones to pay for things, but you typically need to be linked to a bank account or credit card. In Kenya, you don't need a bank account, you don't need a credit history, or very much money for that matter, making this country in East Africa a giant experimental laboratory defining the future of money.    Bob Collymore, the CEO of Kenya's largest cell phone provider, Safaricom, says his company sought to solve the problem. While a majority of Kenyans don't have a bank account, eight in 10 have access to a cell phone. So in 2007, Safaricom started offering a way to use that cell phone to send and receive cash. They call it M-PESA: m stands for "mobile;" "pesa" is money in Swahili.  It is often referred to as Kenya's alternative currency. But safer and more secure.  It's the cheapest phone you can have. It was designed to work at the lowest level of technology.

To get this currency you go to an M-PESA kiosk. I give the agent 3,000 shillings -- about $30 in cash, and she converts it to virtual currency on my account.  Lesley Stahl: This is pretty easy. It's not like opening a bank account.  There are 85,000 agents like her across Kenya, creating a giant grid of human ATMs. For most this is a side business: so a pharmacy will sell M-PESA or a roadside spice shop; this barber will give you a shave and M-PESA. And, yes, you can even buy M-PESA here.  This is bankless banking.

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The trust machine - BitCoin

The trust machine - BitCoin | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
The technology behind bitcoin could transform how the economy works
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BITCOIN has a bad reputation. The decentralised digital cryptocurrency, powered by a vast computer network, is notorious for the wild fluctuations in its value, the zeal of its supporters and its degenerate uses, such as extortion, buying drugs and hiring hitmen in the online bazaars of the “dark net”.  

The blockchain food chain:  To understand the power of blockchain systems, and the things they can do, it is important to distinguish between three things that are commonly muddled up, namely the bitcoin currency, the specific blockchain that underpins it and the idea of blockchains in general. A helpful analogy is with Napster, the pioneering but illegal “peer-to-peer” file-sharing service that went on line in 1999, providing free access to millions of music tracks. Napster itself was swiftly shut down, but it inspired a host of other peer-to-peer services. Many of these were also used for pirating music and films. Yet despite its dubious origins, peer-to-peer technology found legitimate uses, powering internet startups such as Skype (for telephony) and Spotify (for music streaming)—and also, as it happens, bitcoin.  The blockchain is an even more potent technology. In essence it is a shared, trusted, public ledger that everyone can inspect, but which no single user controls. The participants in a blockchain system collectively keep the ledger up to date: it can be amended only according to strict rules and by general agreement. Bitcoin’s blockchain ledger prevents double-spending and keeps track of transactions continuously. It is what makes possible a currency without a central bank.  Blockchains are also the latest example of the unexpected fruits of cryptography. Mathematical scrambling is used to boil down an original piece of information into a code, known as a hash. Any attempt to tamper with any part of the blockchain is apparent immediately—because the new hash will not match the old ones. In this way a science that keeps information secret (vital for encrypting messages and online shopping and banking) is, paradoxically, also a tool for open dealing.  Bitcoin itself may never be more than a curiosity. However blockchains have a host of other uses because they meet the need for a trustworthy record, something vital for transactions of every sort. Dozens of startups now hope to capitalise on the blockchain technology, either by doing clever things with the bitcoin blockchain or by creating new blockchains of their own 

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How Much Does Venture Capital Drive the U.S. Economy?

How Much Does Venture Capital Drive the U.S. Economy? | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Two scholars measure the economic impact of VC-funded companies.

Over the past 30 years, venture capital has become a dominant force in the financing of innovative American companies. From Google to Intel to FedEx, companies supported by venture capital have profoundly changed the U.S. economy. Despite the young age of the venture capital industry, a fifth of current public U.S. companies received venture capital financing.

Venture capital (VC) is a high-touch form of financing that is used primarily by young, innovative, and highly risky companies. Venture capitalists provide not only financing but also mentorship, strategic guidance, network access, and other support. These investments are highly speculative — most of the companies that receive VC funding will fail, even as some become runaway successes. Three out of the five largest companies in the world received most of their early external financing from VC. 


Via Marc Kneepkens
Richard Platt's insight:

Venture capital (VC) is a high-touch form of financing that is used primarily by young, innovative, and highly risky companies. Venture capitalists provide not only financing but also mentorship, strategic guidance, network access, and other support. These investments are highly speculative — most of the companies that receive VC funding will fail, even as some become runaway successes. 3 out of the 5 largest companies in the world received most of their early external financing from VC.  Clearly, Apple, Google, and Microsoft are among the most innovative and most important companies in a generation. But how important are these and other VC-backed companies to the U.S. economy? How do they compare to industrial behemoths such as General Motors or massive financial institutions such as Bank of America in terms of job creation and overall economic impact? The researchers set out to quantify the long-term impact of VC on the U.S. economy. Started by classifying companies as either VC-backed or non–VC-backed, considering only public companies that are traded on major U.S. stock exchanges. While most successful VC investments end with the company being acquired, reliable information is currently available only on those companies that become publicly listed. Thus, our results likely underestimate the impact of VC on the economy.

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Marc Kneepkens's curator insight, October 26, 2015 1:04 PM

#VentureCapital is huge in the US, it has propelled #Tech to the forefront and helped the biggest companies in the world to get to that point.

June Rumiko Klein's curator insight, October 27, 2015 1:31 PM

Interesting statistics!  Definitely part of the overall mystic and fabric of Silicon Valley and high tech in general.  Very creative and exciting soup of entrepreneurship, investment and high risk/rewards.

malek's curator insight, October 29, 2015 6:45 AM

VC investment employ 38% of working force

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Everything You Should Know About the New EMV Chip Credit Card Payment System

Everything You Should Know About the New EMV Chip Credit Card Payment System | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Today is the deadline for US retailers to switch over to a payment technology called EMV. That means you’ll have to start verifying your credit card with a chip, as well as a swipe. We talked to payments industry experts about how EMV works, what’s happening today, and what it means for the average shopper.
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EMV stands for “Europay, MasterCard, and Visa,” which are the three companies that originally developed the specifications for the technology. Today it’s supported by several other companies, including Discover, American Express, and UnionPay, through an organization called EMVCo.  EMV cards have microprocessor chips inside which make it harder for anyone to steal your account information while you’re making a payment.   On the credit cards we’ve all used in the US until now, the card number was stored on the magnetic stripe on the back side of the card. When you swipe the card at the checkout, the checkout terminal reads your card information from that stripe and then sends it through a network to have the money moved from your account to the retailer. That number is static, which means that it’s always the same number for every transaction — which makes it relatively easy for fraudsters to hack the terminal or the network, steal your card number, and use it elsewhere.  But the microprocessor chip in your EMV card generates a unique code for every transaction. Even if a criminal manages to grab the code from the store, it’s mostly useless because it won’t work a second time, and it can’t be traced back to your real card number.

“It has the same information as the magnetic stripe on your old card, but creates a unique code that gets reorganized with each purchase,” explains John Krauss, Discover’s senior manager for card payments and reissuance strategy. “The code generated takes into account numerous different variables and is not linked to a cardmember’s account.”   

Today, October 1, is a deadline for the EMV switchover that the payments industry has given to retailers. After today, retailers who don’t accept EMV payments may be responsible for the costs of what’s called “counterfeit fraud.” That’s a type of credit card fraud based on stealing credit card numbers — by hacking a checkout terminal, for example — and using them to make copies of the victims’ card.  Before today, credit card companies took responsibility for fraudulent purchases. If someone stole your MasterCard number and used it to buy $500 worth of shoes, MasterCard — not you and usually not the store — would cover that cost. After today, if stores don’t accept EMV payments, it’s up to them, rather the card company, to cover the cost of counterfeit fraud.  If stores accept EMV payments, the credit card companies still accept liability for counterfeit fraud. That’s true even if the store accepts EMV payments, but also accepts magnetic stripe payments, and one of those magnetic stripe payments turns out to be fraudulent. The technical wording from Visa is, “The party that has made investment in EMV deployment is protected from financial liability for card-present counterfeit fraud losses on this date. If neither or both parties are EMV compliant, the fraud liability remains the same as it is today.”

Basically, the credit card companies have decided that magnetic stripe transactions are so vulnerable to counterfeit fraud that they don’t want to be responsible for that liability anymore, but they believe EMV is secure enough that they’re willing to be liable for its much more limited risk.   The result, according to most of the major players in the payments industry, is better protection against counterfeit fraud. “This process makes chip card information more difficult to steal and therefore makes a chip card more difficult to counterfeit, said Dina DeMerell, executive director of payments security at Chase Card Services.  And, despite some conspiracy theories, it’s not any kind of tracking chip.

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August snaps 12-month streak of $1B in early-stage funding

August snaps 12-month streak of $1B in early-stage funding | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
With $986 million, it was the first time early stage funding was less than $1B since July 2014
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Internet startups are doing fine, as they accounted for 51% of funding dollars that went to early-stage tech companies in August, and 58 of the deals. That ended three months of falling dollar share. Mobile companies took 26% funding share, and had 30% of the deals for just the third time over the last three years.  The top six early stage deals of the month were:

  1. The biggest deal was Flexport, a platform for global trade, which raised a $20 million round from Peter Thiel, along with A-Grade Investments, Bloomberg Beta, Cherubic Ventures, First Round Capital, Fuel Capital, Funders Club, Google Ventures, Susa Ventures, Y Combinator, Ceyuan Ventures, Felicis Ventures, and Fenway Summer.
  2. Virtualization company RIFT.io raised a $16 million series A round of funding, led by North Bridge Venture Partners with participation from other strategic investors.
  3. Gaming-focused startup castAR raised a $15 million Series A round led by Playground Global Ventures.
  4. Hybrid cloud company Velostrata raised $14 million in a Series A funding round led by Norwest Venture Partners and Greylock IL Partners (83North).
  5. Talena, a Big Data Availability Management company, raised $12 million from Canaan Partners, Intel Capital, ONSET Ventures and Wipro Ventures.
  6. Edtech startup Panorama Education, raised a $12 million Series A round, from Owl Ventures and Spark Capital. 

The top 10 deals during the cumulatively raised $131 million.

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Video conferencing company Blue Jeans raises $76.5M

Video conferencing company Blue Jeans raises $76.5M | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Blue Jeans Network, a company with web and native mobile applications for video conferencing, is announcing today a $76.5 million round of funding.
Richard Platt's insight:

Blue Jeans Network, a company with web and native mobile applications for video conferencing, is announcing today a $76.5 million round of funding.  Companies have plenty of options if they want to hold a video conference for employees or partners. There’s LogMeIn’s join.me, Citrix’s GoToMeeting, Cisco’s WebEx, Logitech’s Lifesize, Google Hangouts, Microsoft Skype/Lync, and Zoom, to name a few. Blue Jeans emphasizes its interoperability with Lync, Hangouts, and other services, as well as even hardware systems from Cisco and Polycom. That way, everyone on a call doesn’t have to be logged into the same system.  Acquisitions in this market happen frequently. In April, for instance, Atlassian acquired Blue Jimp.

Blue Jeans customers include Facebook, GoPro, Pandora, and Stanford University.

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Navigating the Crowdfunding Landscape

Navigating the Crowdfunding Landscape | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Online peer-based fundraising tools have the potential to disrupt traditional investing models, but entrepreneurs and investors must overcome existing cultural and government barriers.
Richard Platt's insight:

Bottom Line: Online peer-based fundraising tools have the potential to disrupt traditional investing models, but entrepreneurs and investors must overcome existing cultural and government barriers.   In 2012, Eric Migicovsky had an idea. The recent engineering graduate had been trying to drum up investment to develop his concept of a “smartwatch,” a device that could connect to an iPhone or Android and provide athletes with real-time messages, music control, and distance calculations. But Migicovsky could raise only US$375,000 from angel investors — not enough to meet his R&D needs. So he decided to take a different approach, and turned to crowdfunding website Kickstarter. Within 24 hours, people had chipped in to raise the entirety of his $100,000 fundraising goal.  He gathered almost $10.3 million in the next three months to fund the release of the Pebble watch in 2013.  Reward-based crowdfunding is another popular approach. In this model, contributors are offered nonfinancial incentives — such as autographed merchandise, special editions of products, or early access to new offerings — in exchange for their backing. This market raked in more than $1.4 billion worldwide in 2012, or more than half of the total crowdfunding investment for that year.  Kshetri credits the helpful efforts of trade associations — such as the National Crowdfunding Association in the U.S., formed in advance of the JOBS Act — with driving legislative and policy changes, especially regarding equity- and reward-based models (though these groups probably won’t have the same luck at changing deeply held cultural beliefs or financial practices). And then there’s technology. Given the global reach of crowdfunding, its growth and usefulness to entrepreneurs depends on the compatibility of payment schemes. For example, the crowdfunding portal Ideame struggled to become the dominant player across Latin America because countries within the region use a variety of currencies and employ different systems to process Internet transactions. As a result, it’s more difficult for people to make cross-border investments, and collaboration between governments is needed to make the industry grow.  As crowdfunding projects become more sophisticated, Kshetri writes, their creators and promoters could improve their prospects by tailoring pitches to match the cultural expectations of potential contributors. For example, U.S.-based crowdfunding projects are typically product oriented, meaning investors expect to have a tangible asset as a result of their backing. Funders in South America, on the other hand, are more likely to support causes or products that benefit society as a whole.   Regardless, demand far exceeds supply in the worldwide finance industry. For example, the World Bank reports that about 2 billion adults in don’t have bank accounts. Could crowdfunding help fill this enormous gap and stimulate new activities among entrepreneurs who lack the access, experience, or cultural support to take advantage of traditional methods? Or will it simply be an alternative for those who already have other options?


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How To Be A VC Without Any Capital

How To Be A VC Without Any Capital | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it

One of the most frequent questions I get as a VC is how to become a VC.

Newly minted MBAs and startup veterans alike want to get into the investing game in increasingly large numbers. Unfortunately, there are so few VC jobs available in any given year it makes the prospect unlikely for most.

If you want to be a VC, my advice is to just get started; you can do the job of a VC without a dollar to your name. Seriously, you don’t need a specific degree, a list of specific credentials on your CV, or scads of family money to do the job of a venture capitalist. I’d wager that almost anyone reading this post has the raw cognitive capabilities to do the work. Read more: click image or title.



Create your own capital raising instruments for your own VC fund, with Financial Architect®

More here: http://www.business-funding-insider.com/RaisingCapital.html



Via Marc Kneepkens
Richard Platt's insight:
How to Be A Venture Capitalist, Minus the Capital: The job of a VC can be broken down into four distinct tasks:   (1) Sourcing Deals: Finding entrepreneurs at the earliest stages is a critical skill. It helps to have the imprimatur of a top-flight VC firm behind you, but fund affiliation isn’t a requirement.   - One way to source deals is to find meetups for emerging technologies and identify the most interesting and industrious attendees. Tim O’Reilly calls these people “Alpha geeks.” Chris Dixon has said that what hackers do in their garages for fun turns out to be what everyone does a decade later. If you can find groups of these people, you’re well on your way to your first investment. (2) Diligence: Another key aspect of the VC job is doing due diligence. This is the process where you look into the background of the founders to see if they’re credible and honest.  It also means doing a deep dive in the industry. Calling potential customers. Getting feedback from key opinion leaders. Creating a thesis for an emerging market. Working out financial models. Predicting how the market might develop.  It might be awkward to call around on individuals, but you can easily trawl for market information and craft all of this data into a compelling presentation.

(3) Negotiation: Once you’re sold on the founders and have found enough evidence to suggest the business will succeed, the next step is hammering out finances. How much money does this founder want/need? What kind of valuation would they accept? You’re not going to finalize things at this stage, but roughing out a basic set of terms is pretty straightforward.   "Money will chase opportunity."  Note: It’s absolutely critical that you remain 100 percent honest during this entire process. If you represent to startups that you work for a VC firm, or suggest any relationship that isn’t recognized by the VC, you’ll instantly be blackballed. Likewise, don’t make claims about being on the team when talking to the VCs. Clearly explain what you’re doing to all parties. When in doubt, disclose. Your reputation is in the balance.


(4) Financing: Now you might be thinking this is where my crazy notion of being an independent VC will fall apart. Unless you can bankroll the company independently, you’ll need to find some monied investors who are willing to take a risk, right?  This sounds hard, but money will chase opportunity. If you can find compelling companies, explain why the market is attractive, why this team is equipped to dominate that market and present a framework for a deal, there will be plenty of angels or firms willing to cut a check or, at least, take a meeting.  You’ll want to be on the radar of these folks before asking them to look at any of  your “deals,” but after a couple of high-quality intros, they’ll be eager to hear from you.


Much more to read and understand in the article before you attempt this being a VC without the Capital, but I can professionally tell you that it is a worthwhile read.

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Marc Kneepkens's curator insight, September 21, 2015 10:42 AM

Everyone can be a #VC. However, it's a tough job, not only do you need to know how to find the right #startups to work with, you also need to know how to attract the #investment #capital. Take a look at 'Financial Architect'. There is a free eBook download with a lot of information. http://bit.ly/1Lr9RrI


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What US VCs Require to Invest in Non-US Companies

What US VCs Require to Invest in Non-US Companies | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it

We are frequently asked by UK and other non-US companies what they need to do to attract US venture capital (VC) investment.  This post is the first of a four-part series addressing how a start-up can best prepare to pursue funding from US investors, starting with a discussion of the general requirements of US VCs considering non-US investments.

The discussion below relates only to early stage investment  


Via marcduke, Marc Kneepkens
Richard Platt's insight:

Venture capitalists – especially in Silicon Valley – place a high value on proximity to their early stage investments.  The reason for this is that VCs bring to the table not just cash, but also their experience, advice and networks.  Consequently, we find US VCs are reluctant to make early stage investments in non-US companies without a founder in reasonable proximity to the VC’s location.   We have seen exceptions where the VC was willing to invest in a company on the condition that it uses the funds to establish US operations.  However, in our experience this is usually where the company already has contracts with, and revenues from, significant US customers and business partners so that its further US business potential is clear.  It is also possible for a US VC to team with a non-US VC.  In this scenario, the non-US VC leads a Superseed/Series A round (with participation from the US VC) for a company located near to the non-US VC.  The US VC is then in prime position to lead the next investment round when the company sets up in the US.  While we believe this kind of cross-border teaming will increase, at present it is not particularly common. Thus, for the most part, non-US companies seeking US investment are faced with pressure to establish US operations earlier than they might otherwise prefer.  This can be done cost-effectively, but it is still expensive relative to the operating budget of a typical early stage company.  There also needs to be a founder willing to relocate to the US, and the company will need to work out an approach to cross-border management.  For UK or continental European companies, this poses particular challenges if the most likely potential VC investors are on the West Coast – that is eight or nine time zones distant, with potential flight times of 11 hours or more.

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Marc Kneepkens's curator insight, September 18, 2015 12:14 PM

#VC companies have their specific challenges, one is dealing with far away non US #startups. This article explains why.

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Google rolls out Android Pay: Here's what you should know

Google rolls out Android Pay: Here's what you should know | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Google's Android Pay is out in the wild, but don't leave your wallet at home just yet.
Richard Platt's insight:

Set up:  Android users wanting to give this a try need to be running Android 4.4 KitKat at the minimum. Phone also requires a Near Field Communication chip, which are found in most Android phones sold within the past three years. Users can make sure the chip is active by going to “Settings” and tapping “More.” The chip will be listed on that screen.  Users can add credit or debit cards to the app by taking a photo within the app or by manually entering in the card number and expiration date. The feature already works with cards issued by most popular banks and credit unions, including Bank of America, PNC, U.S. Bank, USAA and the Navy Federal Credit Union. Compatibility with Citi, Capital One and Wells Fargo is expected within days.

Using it:  Once the information is entered into the app, using it is as simple as placing it near a payment station with compatible technology, meaning a checkout stand with an NFC reader. Most compatible terminals will have an Android Pay or Google Wallet logo on them.   While Google boasts that Android Pay is available at 1 million locations, you can’t leave your wallet at home just yet. Only a few major retailers are on board and its more likely than not that you’ll have to pay the old fashioned way — with cards or cash. Some participating Android Pay retailers include Walgreens, Rite Aid, Subway, Whole Foods, Macy's, Bloomingdales, Toys’R’Us and Sports Authority.

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Why global fund bosses start out on their own

Why global fund bosses start out on their own | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Limited partners back investment professionals with good track record
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After being at the helm of Intel Capital's investments in India and the Asia-Pacific region for 15 years, Sudheer Kuppam decided to launch a new fund under his own firm - Epsilon Venture Partners - last month. With this, Kuppam has joined the club of global fund heads who are turning entrepreneurial by launching their own funds.  "There are no regional tech VC (venture capital) funds in Asia-Pacific. Epsilon fills that void and offers a unique value proposition to the investors and entrepreneurs," said Kuppam over phone from the US, where he has already hit the road to raise $400 million for his maiden fund. He is confident of having the first close in the next six months.   Epsilon is a regional VC and growth equity fund that will invest in the entire Asia-Pacific (except China) with a tech focus.  "You do not start your own fund solely because it is thrilling to be an entrepreneur," said Jain, co-founder, at Arpwood Capital. "The fundamental rationale is usually to serve a gap in the market, which is either unaddressed or you have a strong belief that you have a sustainable edge in that segment because of your experience."  "Many of the global funds have an implicit threshold of $100 million ticket size for investment and then at the other end, you have VCs who make sub $25-million investments. Hence, there is unfulfilled need for investing in $25-100 million ticket size," said Tamhane.  Being part of a global investments platform, one learns a lot about deal evaluation, operations, and the role of human capital thanks to the experience of the founders who have overseen investments across cycles, industries and geographies. These are all learnings that one gains by being a part of these leading global funds. So when they start on their own, this experience comes handy.

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Investments in digital health sector soar

Investments in digital health sector soar | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Investors are seeing the potential of digital health, with funding for startups in the area reaching billions of dollars.

Via HealthlinkNY, Lionel Reichardt / le Pharmageek
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Not really a surprise here with the aging population that we have that is only going to increase with all of the Baby Boomer's retiring

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If Apple loses, your home could be the next thing that's unlocked

If Apple loses, your home could be the next thing that's unlocked | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
In a recent interview about Apple's ongoing legal battle with the Department of Justice, Tim Cook said that our smartphones have more information about us and o...
Richard Platt's insight:

In a recent interview about Apple's ongoing legal battle with the Department of Justice, Tim Cook said that our smartphones have more information about us and our families than any other device we own. He's right. And if the FBI is able to compel Apple or any company to circumvent a phone's encryption, it would tap into a wealth of information. But it's not just the tiny computers in our pocket we need to be concerned about. Your home and car tech could also be affected by the ruling if law enforcement deems it necessary.  The Internet of Things have been a target of security researchers (and rightfully so), but that's forced companies to make it a priority to secure these devices. Which is paramount because they record an incredible amount of information about you and your family. Cameras like the Nest Cam track who comes in and out of your home. Microphones embedded in devices like the Amazon Echo and smart TVs let you check the weather, change channels and order items with your voice.

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FreedomPop inks deal with Intel; hybrid carrier will offer Wi-Fi first smartphone in 2016

FreedomPop inks deal with Intel; hybrid carrier will offer Wi-Fi first smartphone in 2016 | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Hybrid carriers like FreedomPop allow users to employ Wi-Fi hotspots for voice and data, in order to save big bucks on a monthly voice, text and data plan. And when out of range of a hotspot, these MVNOs turn to their cellular partners to fill in the gaps. This is exactly what Google does with Project Fi. Handsets offered to customers of these hybrid carriers, are regular cellular-enabled phones...
Richard Platt's insight:

FreedomPop has announced that it has signed a deal with chipmaker Intel to help it develop a Wi-Fi first smartphone, something that is currently not manufactured. Using Intel's low-priced "SoFIA" Atom x3 processors, FreedomPop's new handset will first seek out a Wi-Fi signal for calls, texts and data. And when the situation calls for a switchover to a cellular signal, the unit will do so "seamlessly."  FreedomPop claims to have the largest "aggregated" Wi-Fi network in existence, which can be accessed for voice, text and data for a monthly cost of just $5. Subscribers have a choice of data plans to choose from. The company has a number of phones it sells, including the LG VoltHTC Desire 510Samsung Galaxy S4 and the Apple iPhone 5. It is also selling the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 tablet.  Part of the deal with Intel includes an investment by Intel Capital that will support the release of the brand new Wi-Fi first phone. All we know at this point is that the handset will be available in multiple markets sometime next year.

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Chase takes aim at Apple, Google with new mobile payments service

Chase takes aim at Apple, Google with new mobile payments service | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
JPMorgan Chase plans to offer a mobile payments service next year, which unlike Apple and Google, would have the backing of large retail chains.

Via Kenneth Carnesi,JD
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You just knew that eventually the stodgy Credit Card companies would eventually have to jump into the digital void of FinTech, their futures depend on it.  And now Chase Bank get's in the mix.

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$9.8 Billion Valuation for Ferrari

$9.8 Billion Valuation for Ferrari | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
The sports car manufacturer priced its initial public offering on Tuesday at $52 a share, the top end of an expected price range, raising more than $894 million for its corporate parent, Fiat Chrysler.
Richard Platt's insight:

The sports car manufacturer priced its initial public offering on Tuesday at $52 a share, the top end of an expected price range, raising more than $894 million for its corporate parent, Fiat Chrysler. The stock sale values the racecar specialist at about $9.8 billion.

Ferrari begins trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday morning under — what else? — the ticker symbol RACE, at a tough time for European automakers. Weeks earlier, shares of its parent and those of other European automakers sagged for a time in the wake of the diesel emissions cheating scandal at Volkswagen.

It will also triumphantly enter a stock market that has proved trying for many other market debutants.

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Intel Generated YTD Stock Returns of -20.03%

Intel Generated YTD Stock Returns of -20.03% | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Intel generated TTM returns of -16.66%, 9.26% in the trailing one month. It generated -20.03% YTD. Its share price fell by 1.53% in the trailing five days.
Richard Platt's insight:
Analyst recommendations:  Out of 51 analysts covering Intel’s stock, 27 have issued a “buy” recommendation, six have issued a “sell” recommendation, and 18 recommend a “hold.” The analyst stock price target for the firm is $33.88, with a median target estimate of $34.50. Given these figures, Intel is trading at a discount of 16% with respect to the median analyst price target. Intel Corporation makes up 2.95% of the Technology Select Sector SPDR ETF (XLK) and 2.77% of the Powershares QQQ ETF (QQQ).
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AOL/Verizon Completes Spinout Of CrunchBase Funded By Emergence Capital

AOL/Verizon Completes Spinout Of CrunchBase Funded By Emergence Capital | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
CrunchBase, the database of startups, other tech companies and the people who work in them that was originally developed alongside TechCrunch, is spinning..
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CrunchBase, the database of startups, other tech companies and the people who work in them that was originally developed alongside TechCrunch, is spinning out  from AOL / Verizon.  Emergence Capital is leading an investment in the newly-independent company, while AOL/Verizon — owner of TechCrunch - will retain a stake in the business.  The independent company will be led by Jager McConnell, who had been the VP of product at Salesforce. Matt Kaufman will remain as head of operations at CrunchBase. The two announced the news on stage this morning at Disrupt, TechCrunch’s big conference in San Francisco, alongside TechCrunch COO Ned Desmond, and Santi Subotovsky of Emergence. (McConnell is pictured above.)  The idea is that the new independence and investment will give CrunchBase a more solid footing to develop its business in enterprise data. The main site today has around 2 million unique visitors per month, and it has grown by about 50 percent year-on-year. Its database of companies and people is around 860,000.  The value of AOL/Verizon’s remaining stake in CrunchBase is not being disclosed, and neither is the exact value of the investment being made by Emergence. From what we have heard, AOL’s stake remains “significant” but Emergence is now the controlling investor. Mark Roszkowski, SVP, head of corporate development at AOL, will serve on the board of the stand-alone company

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7 Steps of a Successful Crowdfunding Campaign in Business

7 Steps of a Successful Crowdfunding Campaign in Business | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
7 Steps of a Successful Crowdfunding Campaign http://t.co/3mgptcFxmS

Via TechinBiz
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What are the differences between an Angel and Series A round of funding?

What are the differences between an Angel and Series A round of funding? | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it

A major chunk of investments in startups is done either by Venture capitalist firms or by Angel investors. Therefore, it becomes essential for entrepreneurs to understand the difference between them. To read more click on image or title.



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Via Marc Kneepkens
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Marc Kneepkens's curator insight, September 21, 2015 8:51 AM

It is essential to know the difference between angel investors and venture capital. Angel investors are individuals working with their own money, venture capital works with investment funds. However, there are other ways to raise capital now thanks to the Job Act. Check out what this VC company is doing, very hopeful and empowering for startups who have always struggled with the issue of raising funds. Take a look at what CCA has created, you can either work with them directly or learn how to do the whole process yourself. http://bit.ly/1Lr9RrI


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Cisco commits $10M to fund for Asean startups

Cisco commits $10M to fund for Asean startups | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Cisco Investment has pledged $10 million to Monk's Hill Venture's innovation fund for Asean startups, focusing on those that provide tools in cloud, mobility, big data analytics, and the Internet of Everything.
Richard Platt's insight:

Cisco Systems' investment arm has unveiled plans to invest $10 million into Monk's Hill Ventures' innovation fund for Asean startups.

The fund supports early-stage startups that offer tools in cloud, the Internet of Everything (IoE), big data and analytics, mobility, and enterprise applications, said Cisco Investments in a statement on Wednesday.  Monk's Hill Ventures focuses on technology startups with operations in Southeast Asia, as well as global tech startups looking to expand into this region.  Apart from offering financial help, Cisco said it also would be looking to provide its technology and go-to-market expertise with the selected startups. The networking vendor's Asean president Saleh M. Haji Munshi said: "Asean continues to be one of the most diverse, fast-moving, and competitive regions in the world with countries like Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand.   "In addition to attracting multinationals, Asean has become a launching pad for new companies; the region now accounts for 38% of Asia's market for initial public offerings," he said, citing figures from McKinsey.

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WebAction Raises Additional $20 Million in Series B-1 Funding

WebAction Raises Additional $20 Million in Series B-1 Funding | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
WebAction cinched an additional $20 million in Series B-1 funding this week, bringing the company's lifetime total to 31 million.
Richard Platt's insight:

WebAction cinched an additional $20 million in Series B-1 funding this week, bringing the company's lifetime total to $31 million. The data integration streaming analytics provider said the latest round of funding will be used to boost its technical and marketing expertise surrounding the newly rebranded Striim (pronounced Stream) data platform.  The latest round of funding was sponsored by WebAction’s returning investors, including Intel Capital, Summit Partners and others. The company said it will also use the investment to develop its sales organization and create channels so it can meet increasing customer demand. WebAction previously raised $11 million in Series B funding in 2013.  Cloud Technology Partners Raises Additional $3.5M in Funding 

Igor Taber, investment director for Big Data and Analytics at Intel Capital, will join WebAction’s board of directors as a result of the funding, according to the announcement.   “When we started WebAction, we recognized the importance of real-time data integration and streaming change data capture, as well as the opportunity for a new software offering that could introspect data while in-motion,” said Ali Kutay, founder, president and CEO of WebAction, in a statement. “Fast forward to today, we now draw on our deep experience in both data integration and application infrastructure to make streaming data integration accessible, and deliver an enterprise-strength, end-to-end streaming analytics platform.” WebAction also announced the rebranding of its software platform as Striim to reflect its use in end-to-end streaming integration and intelligence. The company said the change is in name only, with the platform itself remaining the same as its original product. While the current version of Striim is identical to previous offerings, WebAction did tease several updates for its upcoming Fall release. The latest version of Striim will include new features for streaming data integration as well as for streaming analytics and operational intelligence.

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Devops software company Chef raises $40M with HP Ventures participating

Devops software company Chef raises $40M with HP Ventures participating | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Chef, a startup with devops software for automating the management of the infrastructure that applications run on, announced today that it has raised $40 million in new funding.
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Chef’s software, which includes some open-source components, is widely used. Chef says it has more than 750 paying customers, including Facebook, GE, IBM, Nordstrom, and Yahoo. Now the startup is looking to become an even bigger force in enterprise software, as it continues to face competition from privately held Puppet, Ansible, and SaltStack, among others.  DFJ Growth and Millennium Technology Value Partners led the new round. Battery Ventures, Citi Ventures, DFJ, Ignition Partners, and Scale Venture Partners also participated, along with new strategic investor Hewlett-Packard Ventures. At one point, HP held a prominent role in the business of configuration management, thanks to its $1.6 billion Opsware acquisition in 2007. Now Chef and Puppet regularly get attention in the category of devops, which stands for the fusion of developers and operations in the same person or team.

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The rise of the thematic VC and what it means for founders

The rise of the thematic VC and what it means for founders | Crowd Funding, Micro-funding, New Approach for Investors - Alternatives to Wall Street | Scoop.it
Thematic venture capital funds have come into vogue over the last decade.
Richard Platt's insight:

Thematic venture capital funds have come into vogue over the last decade. Firms used to be generalists and VC was an artisanal craft largely organized by stage and fund size. Today there are hardware funds, B2B funds, and funds with very explicit theses around the types of companies or founders they invest in.   Corporations have funds. Incubators have funds. The venture market has come to parallel the ETF market with a proliferation of investment flavors and vehicles. Funds have even been raised to address highly specific trends, platforms (e.g. iPhone Fund, Facebook Fund, Google Glass Collective), even numerology.  Part of the reason for this proliferation is that themes are tremendously useful. They provide guideposts for the investors and help differentiate themselves to entrepreneurs. Union Square Ventures backs startups that show evidence of network effects. This operating philosophy, paired with the team’s excellent track record, has led to amazing returns. Similarly, the Foundry Group, Collaborative Fund, and IA Ventures use core themes to define their investment approach. This allows funds to truly go deep in a domain and develop an encyclopedic knowledge of the players and technologies. Additionally, because they’re explicit about their focus, it is easier for entrepreneurs and co-investors to identify whether they would consider a given investment or not.

There are also domains that require hyper-specialization. Biotech, for example, requires a deeper understanding of science than other fields given the risk, timelines, and the very different set of metrics by which they’re evaluated. VCs need to have an innate sense of the market since biotech companies rarely have revenues when they go public or get acquired.

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