The crowdfunding is a a particular type of alternative financing that allows entrepreneurs who have projects and needs, but - respectively - not all the funds to realize or satisfy them, to try to access third party economic resources through specific online platforms, offering their supporters rewards of a financial or non-financial nature.
Equity Crowdfunding is a form of investment that allows investors to finance start-ups and SMEs set up as Capital Companies, through online portals authorized by Consob, by providing a financial contribution in exchange for equity holdings of the same companies with capital and administrative rights.
The equity-based model therefore provides for financing to take the form of venture capital and for the investor to become a full partner in the company proposing the entrepreneurial project.
For security reasons it has been established that the management of portals is reserved to two categories of subjects: the subjects authorized by Consob, registered in a special register kept by the same Authority, or banks and investment firms (SIM), already authorized to provide investment services.
The Italian regulation of the Crowdfunding Equity Institute
Italy was the first country in the European Union to adopt a specific body of legislation to regulate the phenomenon of Equity Crowdfunding through the enactment of Decree Law no. 179 of 18 October 2012 (the so-called "Decreto crescita bis") and the completion of Consob Regulation no. 18592 of 26 June 2013.
With the subsequent Decreto-Legge of 24 January 2015 n.3 (the so-called "Investment Compact") the possibility to raise venture capital online through authorized platforms is extended to Innovative SMEs and, with the 2019 Budget Law, to all SMEs.
The proposing company, through the implementation of a paid capital increase, through the issue of new shareholdings, offers the subscription of the same to third parties by means of online portals.
To learn more: Regulation on raising venture capital online, Consob.