PledgeMe is licensed for equity crowd funding.
The Financial Markets Authority (FMA) has issued its first
equity crowd funding licences, following Cabinet's approval
of new regulations for crowd funding and peer-to-peer
lending, as part of the Government's financial market
Wellington-based PledgeMe, co-founded by Anna Guenther, a
graduate of the University of Otago's masters of
entrepreneurship programme, and Auckland-based Snowball
Effect were New Zealand's first licensed providers.
Ms Guenther, who was delighted to receive the licence, said
it meant Kiwi entrepreneurs could now raise capital by
selling shares in their companies to investors on the
There would be no investor caps for equity crowd-funding,
although there was a $2 million cap on what a company could
raise through crowd-funding each year.
Companies no longer needed to prepare a prospectus or
investment statement before raising funds from the public.
Since its launch in February 2012, PledgeMe has raised more
than $2.5 million for 640 projects, ranging from a bionic
hand to a pallet pavilion.
PledgeMe had been working with companies ready to start
equity crowd-funding and it would be launching their
campaigns on August 15 with a launch party, she said.
Snowball Effect co-founder Simeon Burnett said the company,
which would launch in the week beginning August 11, would
initially present investors with the opportunity to take
shareholding stakes in craft brewery Renaissance Brewing.
Renaissance Brewing was seeking $600,000-$700,000 in new
funding to expand its Marlborough operations and increase its
marketing presence as it pursued its global growth ambitions.
More than 200 companies had contacted the online platform
about raising capital and the team was working with 14
businesses to bring them to market, Mr Burnett said.
The FMA would monitor the newly regulated equity
''It's also our role to remind investors that these are
higher-risk investments and that the public should do their
homework before investing their money,'' director of
compliance Elaine Campbell said.