The Securities and Exchange Commission today voted 5-0 to propose rules aimed at letting startups tap large numbers of ordinary investors for small amounts of capital. Under the long-delayed "crowdfunding” regulations, small firms could sell shares through online "portals," where thousands of investors could pore over the business plans of small companies and choose promising investments.
The American Institute of Architects (AIA) in February had urged the SEC to issue such regulations for equity-based crowdfunding, citing the ability of this innovative financing tool to create jobs and maintain the current economic recovery.
Crowdfunding, the practice of investing in projects through the use of a crowd-supported web based fundraising campaign, shows significant promise for attracting investors to smaller real estate projects and getting them off the architect’s drawing board. According to an AIA report, the amount of money generated by crowdfunding was close to $1.5 billion in 2011.
AIA President Mickey Jacob, FAIA, said:
“Architects and design professionals of every industry are grateful that the SEC has finally proposed these final regulations to further develop businesses and provide increased value to the American economy. Once these rules are finalized, crowdfunding may well become a major vehicle for communities to develop revitalization projects that may often be too small to attract enough investment capital.
“We look forward to the SEC adopting final crowdfunding regulations soon and stand ready to help educate the design and construction community about the tremendous potential of this innovative fund-raising tool.”
About the American Institute of Architects
For over 150 years, members of the American Institute of Architects have worked with each other and their communities to create more valuable, healthy, secure, and sustainable buildings and cityscapes. Members adhere to a code of ethics and professional conduct to ensure the highest standards in professional practice. Embracing their responsibility to serve society, AIA members engage civic and government leaders and the public in helping find needed solutions to pressing issues facing our communities, institutions, nation and world. Visit www.aia.org.