MIAMI--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Florida State Senate and House have passed an Intrastate Crowdfunding bill, SB 914 and HB 275 respectively, and it is expected to be signed by Governor Rick Scott this week. This new legislation will allow online crowdfunding platforms to register and conduct business in the state of Florida within the guidelines set out in the bill. This includes requirements that both investors and businesses reside within the state and that certain consumer protections are in place. It also means that investment in private Florida companies is no longer restricted to “accredited” high net worth investors. With this law, Florida will join a growing list of states throughout the country that have passed their own Intrastate Crowdfunding laws.
A Florida Intrastate Crowdfunding law has been in development for over a year. In March of 2014 members of the Florida House and Senate were aligned behind the “Florida Crowd Finance Act” as it worked its way through the spring legislative session. This original bill was initiated by Miami-based Funding Wonder Inc., a small business lending platform, with the support of the Florida Crowd Finance Association (FCFA). While support was strong among the bill’s sponsors and many legislators, the Florida Office of Financial Regulation (OFR), which reports to the governor, opposed the bill effectively postponing action on the matter until 2015.
“I am gratified that the work we did last year to educate Florida lawmakers has finally paid off,” said Funding Wonder CEO Michael Mildenberger. “There is tremendous momentum behind Crowdfunding as a tool for business finance and it makes sense for Florida, with the country’s fourth largest economy, to be an active participant.”
Sally Outlaw, the President of the Florida Crowdfinance Association and CEO of peerbackers, concurs. "I'm encouraged to see the legislature embrace new forms of finance to ignite entrepreneurial innovation in our state,” she said. “This bill not only creates more capital opportunities for small businesses but also provides Florida residents a chance to invest in emerging companies in their own communities."
About Funding Wonder
FUNDING WONDER, Inc. is an online Social Lending Community that connects established small and medium businesses looking for loans with investors seeking good returns. The Company was founded in 2013 and has offices in New York, San Francisco and Miami.
99% of all businesses are categorized as small and medium businesses with under 500 employees. They are the lifeblood of the US economy and the greatest source of jobs. Yet they often don’t have access to capital because traditional lenders have shied away from small business loans. Investors, in turn, are looking for reliable alternatives to bonds and equities that offer a fixed interest rate with high returns. Funding Wonder brings together quality businesses looking for growth capital with investors looking for better returns, in a trusted, easy to use lending marketplace. Visit Funding Wonder on the web at www.fundingwonder.com.
About Florida Crowd Finance Association (FCFA)
The FCFA was formed by a number of business and professional people, academicians and others from a wide range of backgrounds with an interest in the development of a Crowd Finance sector in the State of Florida. Based in Miami, the FCFA’s primary role at the onset was to advocate for adoption of the Florida Crowd Finance Act of 2014 and any necessary implementing rules. With the passage of the Florida Intrastate Crowdfunding in 2015, the FCFA will assume a broader role in representing the interests of Florida-based Crowd Funding entities in Florida and elsewhere in the United States and promoting the growth of a robust Crowd Finance sector in the state.