Kickstarter and Indiegogo, these are popular crowdfunding sites that you would have heard of by now. Crowdfunding is the process in which people turn to the Internet to raise funds, as it’s a quick and easy way for them to get investments for their new projects, ventures or even charitable causes. While crowdfunding is not new, its popularity amongst businesses in Singapore only picked up four years ago and has now become a new way for entrepreneurs to raise money and awareness for their great ideas.
Here are the 4 different types of crowdfunding as defined by the Monetary Authority of Singapore:
1. Donation-based crowdfunding: where individuals pool their resources to support a charitable cause
2. Reward-based crowdfunding: where individuals give money to a company in return for a “reward”, usually a product produced by the company
3. Lending-based crowdfunding: where individuals lend money to a company and receive the company’s legally- binding commitment to repay the loan at pre-determined time intervals and interest rate
4. Equity-based crowdfunding: where individuals invest in shares sold by a company and receive a share of the profits in the form of a dividend or distribution, subject to the company’s discretion
If you’re looking for some extra help to give your business an extra boost, here is a list of local lending-based crowdfunding/ equity-based crowdfunding platforms that have gained popularity among local businesses:
Small business owners are no longer limited to borrowing from the bank if they are in urgent need for money to expand their business. They can now get funds for as fast as three days from MoolahSense, a peer-to-peer lending platform for businesses seeking short-term business loans.
Backed with a Capital Market Services license from the Monetary Authority of Singapore, MoolahSense has helped more than 150 SEMs raised more than $21 million funding.
To set up a campaign, borrowers need to provide a short description of their business and the requested amount. MoolahSense will carefully evaluate the company financials for credit risk, approve the application, and send out the information to the investors. Once the campaign is live, investors will determine if they find the loan agreeable and the interest rate for investors can range from 9% to 24%. An example of a successful campaign shows that the building and construction company manage to raise the working capital it needed for existing and new contracts, through fifteen investors, in just 2 days.
Reportedly Singapore’s longest-running crowdfunding platform, Crowdo offers a hybrid of crowdfunding activities for businesses and investors, namely equity crowdfunding and peer-to-business lending. Crowdo allows accredited investors to invest in Startups and SMEs who are looking to raise funds. Their mobile application, Crowdo Connect, makes crowdfunding easier by allowing you to borrow and invest on the go.
Singapore’s first true equity crowdfunding platform, FundedHere is established to support promising startups in Asia, with a minimum investment amount of $5,000 per investor, for up to 12 months, in exchange for equity stakes or tenured loans. From the funds raised, FundedHere will receive a success fee of 8%; with 6% in cash and the other 2% in the form of shares at the same valuation.
Ever since its establishment in 2014, Capital Match has facilitated over $40 million in cumulative origination, naming itself as the largest pure marketplace platform in Singapore offering affordable working capital for SMEs. It has also received the Capital Market Services license from Monetary Authority of Singapore early this year.
Borrowers can make a request for a loan and submit all the necessary documents on their website. Application process generally takes about 2-3 days and once done, investors will review and commit their funding to the application.
For small businesses looking for different types of loans, Funding Societies, a peer-to-peer lending platform offers comprehensive range of loans for SMES including business terms loans, invoice financing and nano-loans (FS Bolt). It has successfully provided more than $89 million loans to SMEs across Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia.
A typical loan application process can be done online easily within 5 minutes. For SMEs who are interested in nano loan under FS Bolt, the application process takes only 2 minutes, with fast approval (as fast as 2 hours) and cash on hand in 24 hours.
While crowdfunding provides a fast way for local businesses to obtain funds, it is always important to read and understand the terms and conditions that come along with the funds, and be cautious of the risks involved.