Crowdfunding News – All The Latest Updates
Hi guys and welcome to another fortnightly crowdfunding news edition. As usual we will be looking at the latest goings-on in the crowdfunding world from exploring a secret Crystal Palace subway to looking at how researchers are turning to crowdfunding to develop an Alzheimer’s drug.
Crowdfunding Campaign To Reopen The Secret Crystal Palace Subway
The Friends of Crystal Palace Subway are crowdfunding to reopen a stunning 150-year-old secret underpass to the public. (Time Out London, April, 2016)
The subway which was opened back in 1865 for upper class passengers travelling by the railway station nearby was also used as an air raid shelter, a children’s playground and a site for illegal raves! It was closed 20 years ago due to safety concerns.
Currently, The Friends of Crystal Palace Subway have raised enough money to start reinstating safe access, however, they still need more funds to carry out all the necessary maintenance on the subway.
Are you interested in helping maintain a heritage site? If so, get involved here.
Image source : Friends of Crystal Palace Subway
Government Tax Schemes Boost UK Crowdfunding
The success of the UK’s crowdfunding industry has been driven by the Government’s tax efficient investment schemes, such as the EIS and SEIS according to SME Insider.
Research from equity crowdfunding platform Growthdeck shows that 96% of all investment opportunities on crowdfunding platforms are in the Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) or the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) that offer significant tax breaks to investors in exchange for funding small to medium enterprises.
The co-founder and CEO of Growthdeck, Gary Robins explains to SME Insider that : “Crowdfunding platforms have become a vital conduit for small businesses to access they funding they need to exploit their growth potential, providing a much-needed boost to the UK’s SME sector.”
In addition he also mentions in the article that government schemes like EIS and SEIS offer investors attractive tax breaks which are vital for sustaining growth in UK SMEs.
Growthdeck’s research shows that two thirds (66%) of all investment opportunities promoted on crowdfunding platforms claim to be EIS- eligible, in constrast, 39% claim SEIS eligibility.
A Lack of Regulation Holds Irish Crowdfunding Back
Back in one of our blog posts from November we briefly touched upon the Irish crowdfunding scene, for those of you who don’t know much about crowdfunding in the Emerald Isle, Ireland has invested €401 million in start-up companies which makes it an ideal place for the sector and has the potential to be one of the strongest crowdfunding markets in Europe.
If it has the capital and has the potential – then why isn’t it doing well? Firstly, it has been documented that the Irish environment lacks bespoke legislation which may leave gaps in consumer protections and secondly from an Oireachtas Jobs, Enterprise, and Innovation committee report, legislators appear to have been comparatively slow to account for the increasing popularity of crowdfunding is in contrast with UK crowdfunding which is praised in the report.
Football INDEX Raises £400,000 During Seedrs Campaign
A crowdfunding story for all you footy fans out there! Football gambling platform Football INDEX recently launched a crowdfunding campaign on Seedrs to raise £800,000 and aims to be the world’s first football based stock market.
How does it work? Users build a portfolio and buy and sell players and can deposit as little as £10. Footballers are currently for sale from just £1.
Football INDEX CEO Adam Cole mentioned in Crowdfund Insider that : “My team and I built Football INDEX because we were convinced that most people didn’t want to trade traditional stocks and shares in companies like British Gas and HSBC. People want to invest their knowledge and ‘trade their passion’, and there is no shortage of knowledge or passion in football.”
Since Football INDEX’s launch, its Seedrs initiative has already raised £400,000. It is set to close in June and currently raised £800,009 on the platform.
Unfortunately at The House Crowd we can’t help you invest in Premier League players but if you’re interested in investing in property, why not take a look at our latest investments here.
Researchers Turn To Crowdfunding To Develop Alzheimer’s Drug
Tests on a drug with the potential to stop Alzheimer’s in its tracks are being funded by raffles, pensioners’ donations and a sponsored walk – because the research team cannot find money for pre-clinical safety tests any other way. (The Guardian, April 2016)
A team of researchers led by Dr David Allsop from Lancaster University’s division of biomedicine and life sciences are running a crowdfunding campaign in order to help fund necessary preparatory testing on their drug in the belief they may be looking at a cure for the progressive brain disease. Currently Dr Allsop and his team of researchers have raised £52,000 towards their target of £165,000.
Due to the global financial crisis, access to funding for basic and clinical research has been blocked, which has lead to some health researchers – particularly in the U.S. to turn to crowdfunding. This seems to be quite a common thing in the medical industry, back in one of our crowdfunding blogs in February we looked at biotech firm Axol Bioscience who smashed its crowdfunding campaign and over-funded up to a total of £1 million (view here).
Donations as little as £5 to carry out smaller tests is enough to keep research advancing until more lucrative sources emerge. Dr Allsop told the Guardian : “We are really excited because we think that we are on to something that stands a chance of working, but without crowdfunding we would have been stumped.”
Do you have an interest in medical science and crowdfunding? Read more on the topic here.
Image source : The Guardian
What Are Your Thoughts?
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