2,532 crowdsourcing and crowdfunding sites
On November 3, the U.S. House of Representatives voted almost unanimously to pass Representative McHenry’s (R-NC) H.R. 2930 bill, the ‘Entrepreneur Access to Capital Act’.
Of the 241 house republicans, 238 voted in favor of H.R. 2930 and three abstained; of the 192 democrats, 169 voted in favor of the bill, 17 voted against it, and six abstained. The bill will progress to the Senate within the next few weeks, and should it pass, it could be implemented as early as the first quarter of 2012.
If the bill becomes law, individuals could invest up to $10,000 in start-ups via the internet without first approaching the Securities and Exchange Commission. It would also represent a rare moment of bipartisan cooperation in a staunchly divided political climate.
Four of six proposed amendments to H.R. 2930 passed, including one by Representative McHenry that limits “the aggregate annual amount raised through the issue of the securities to $5,000,000 or less.” Also, individual investments in securities are limited to an annual amount of $10,000 and no more than 10% of the investor’s gross income.
In addition to the Obama administration's recent affirmation of the bill, H.R. 2930's sweeping victory in the House shows that the United States’ elected officials recognize crowdfunding as a transformative, economically productive way of raising funds for start-ups.
Meanwhile, the North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) calls the legislation "well intended, but structurally flawed," arguing that the bill "will needlessly preempt state securities laws and weaken important investor protections."
A similar crowdfunding investment framework to the one proposed in H.R. 2930 is already legal in countries like France and the United Kingdom.