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Crowdfunding: 21st century’s way to invest on Main Street

posted Sep 13, 2014, 1:47 AM by J Shaw   [ updated Sep 13, 2014, 1:47 AM ]

Crowdfunding is the new way for entrepreneurs to get funding and investors to find new ventures.

Wanting to start a new business is good, having the latest and greatest idea is even better, but not having the funds can put the brakes on everything. Now with crowdfunding those dreams are becoming a reality. Crowdfunding by definition is the practice of funding a project or venture by raising many small amounts of money from a large number of people, typically via the Internet. Social media plays a key role in getting the word out, over 800 million daily users on Facebook alone. With billions of dollars and hundreds of websites out there federal and state governments have stepped up creating new laws and legislation for crowdfunding.    

The State of Michigan just passed new legislation that provides entrepreneurs and businesses with a new and exciting option to raise funds for their business.  This is a way to request funds, from the public without having to comply with complicated Securities Exchange regulations. Potential investors can provide up to $10,000 per individual and these funds can be pooled with investments from other individuals to provide a business with the amount needed for their business venture.

For over 30 years, Michigan State University Extension partner Northern Lakes Economic Alliance  has assisted entrepreneurs in obtaining capital in both conventional and non-conventional ways. Crowdfunding is the newest nonconventional funding mechanism for new ventures. For additional information and to sign up for this new funding option check out Crowdfunding MI or Local Stake. 

Michigan State University Extension has had a unique relationship with the regional economic development organization Northern Lakes Economic Alliance (NLEA) for more than 20 years. Recognizing the strength of combining resources, this partnership focuses on economic development, entrepreneurship growth and community infrastructure throughout a four-county region in the northwest Lower Peninsula, specifically Antrim, Charlevoix, Cheboygan and Emmet counties. As a result, the NLEA utilizes resources offered through MSU Extension as it provides leadership to state-wide programs sponsored by MSU Extension.

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