25 Feb 2016: A New Zealand campaign to buy a private beach for the public in a national park has succeeded in its bid to secure the beachfront land. The campaign on New Zealand’s biggest crowdfunding site, Givealittle, raised over NZ$2 million from more than 40,000 people. The cause struck a chord with many Kiwis, whose desire to see the land become part of the country’s iconic Abel Tasman National Park, will now be realised.
A guest post from Josh Daniell and Nathan Rose
New Zealand is a pioneer in equity crowdfunding – one of the very first countries to create a legal framework for retail investors to participate in offers of shares in private companies. So when the first equity crowdfunding offer launched in New Zealand in August 2014, many watched with interest as this new way to raise capital took its first steps.
There were initial mixed reactions from existing market participants. Some saw the broader reach to retail investors as an opportunity to create efficiencies through a streamlined online process, as well as increasing access to an asset class previously restricted to the traditional institutional and high net worth networks. Others were concerned that retail investors would struggle to fully understand the risks involved with early stage growth companies, and would be fleeced through low quality deals.
14 Feb 2016: The Australian lower house of Parliament passed the Australian Government’s controversial crowdfunding bill to the Senate on Thursday. The proposed legislation has attracted criticism from a number of stakeholders and crowdfunding platforms such as Venture Crowd and Equitise as it restricts fundraising to larger companies. The Opposition spokesperson for start ups, Ed Husic, has flagged amendments after the Senate Economics Committee reports at the end of the month.