Vanderhoof, BC. – With the British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC) giving the go ahead to use crowdfunding to raise money through issuing securities, local portal InvestLocalBC.ca is relying on a dealer registration exemption provided by the BCSC (BCI 45-535) to give small startups an alternative way to raise funds.
“The whole idea is to empower our communities and get things done. And now being able to assist businesses through the new portal for InvestLocalBC there is a tremendous opportunity to empower communities all over the province. Not only nonprofit and civic projects, but new business ideas and startups now have this power as well,” said Community Futures Stuart Nechako’s general manager Graham Stanley.
While there are many crowdfunding platforms out there, InvestLocalBC aims at getting local dollars for local projects. “Through local investment we empower our communities and the focus was to help local groups and organizations fund their projects. We launched the service in the spring of 2014 for non-profits and civic projects then, in the spring of 2015 securities regulators of British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Québec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia made the move to allow start-ups and early stage companies to raise capital through crowdfunding as well. We were ready, submitted our paperwork and now have the blessing of BCSC. I think InvestLocalBC is the first of its kind in the province,” Stanley said.
“Crowdfunding is an incredibly powerful community development tool that can increase awareness and supercharge stakeholder engagement by aligning financial and social goals to help bring community projects to realization,” said Craig Asano, founder and executive director of National Crowd Funding Association of Canada (NCFA), of which Stanley is an ambassador.
Adding a business portal to the site is not the only transformation. InvestLocalBC has also partnered with Fundrazr a crowdfunding pioneer in BC to “increase our reach on the nonprofit side and FundRazr has an extremely large audience,” stated Stanley.
“We are pleased to support the innovative program from InvestLocalBC for encouraging entrepreneurship in communities across the province,” said Daryl Hatton, founder & CEO of FundRazr, the leading provider of crowdfunding services in Canada. “Their approach of pairing locally-based crowdfunding sites powered by our world-class FundRazr technology with government programs and sponsorship is unique. It shows a commitment to break new ground and find effective new ways to support BC companies in this growing, technology-enabled economy.”
The new look of InvestLocalBC went live in mid-December and has three dedicated sites, Nonprofit, Business and Arts and Culture. “This is the tool we need to begin to diversify the economies of our communities,” said Stanley.