Crowd Investing, A Game Changer for Women
The economic crisis of the mid-2000s made it increasingly difficult for businesses to secure finance through traditional channels. But raising capital for women-owned business was even more difficult. As a result, more and more female-headed enterprises are turning to crowd investing in raising the necessary funds. Online investors have been quick to respond to the growing number of investment opportunities currently offered and, as a result, crowd investing is growing by leaps and bounds.
What is Crowdinvesting?
Crowd investing is the term given when a large group of people, the crowd, co-invest in people or businesses online. Crowd investing encompasses both equity and debt forms of funding as well as hybrid structures of the two. Those spending together don't necessarily know each other before they decide to invest.
Capital is the key ingredient needed for companies to grow. Women entrepreneurs who aspire to build their businesses are 50% less likely to seek outside funding than their male counterparts, according to, "Access to Capital by High-Growth Women-Owned Businesses," a report by the National Women’s Business Council.
Female-headed businesses face many unique obstacles in the startup world, and the most significant and most often mentioned obstacle is obtaining access to capital, the lifeblood of any business. Crowdinvesting is leveling the playing field when it comes to access to capital for women. Crowdinvesting provides a more democratic approach to capital aggregation by providing a direct pathway to the source of funding necessary to launch a successful business venture.
Globally only 5–10% of women-owned businesses have access to commercial bank loans, and they account for less than 5% of venture capital (VC) investment. Crowdfunding democratizes access to capital and allows potential customers and investors to decide which companies to support, female entrepreneurs, find a higher level of success using crowdfunding than in traditional methods of raising funds to get started.
Women and Crowdinvesting
Women outperform men because women have the skills, including project management, marketing, storytelling, meeting milestones, being frank when mistakes happen, and communicating clearly and without jargon. They are more accurate with revenue projections and words that align with actions, and they are also excellent at follow-up.
To increase the number of women entrepreneurs successfully raising money, more women need to invest in women-owned businesses, and this will require an intentional educational effort. In 2013, only 19 percent of all angel investors were women, and just 20 percent of all angel-backed companies were women-led, according to the Center for Venture Research. The passage of Regulation CF now increases the pool of eligible investors into the millions.
As women become more knowledgeable about investing in startups and small businesses via crowd investing there will be an increase in successful female-headed companies, which will create more wealth for owners and investors and establish a cycle of investments and profits leading to more investments. Women, we may not have all the money needed to finance the majority of all female-led business, they do have enough to start making things happen for each other. Women have decision-making power over $11.2 trillion or 39% of all investable assets in the United States.
About the Author:
Bill Huston, founded Our Crowd Rocks, LLC a crowdfunding consulting and campaign management company based in Louisville, Kentucky. He is the Chief Consultant and Digital Strategist where his duties are to research the crowdfunding ecosystem for new technologies and best practices, and then to communicate these findings internally and externally through the company blog, ebooks, forum, social media, email newsletter, and any other platforms available. Our Crowd Rocks focuses on building excited and engaged crowds for crowdfunding campaigns using social media, email marketing, blogger/media outreach using an inbound marketing strategy modified for crowdfunding.