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Crowdinvest, ‘worlds first crowd sourced investment platform’, launches

Any new startup, scratch that, any business should be solving the universal issue of “what problem can my company solve?” Crowdinvest, a venture by three ambitious Cape Town locals aims to address the need of the burgeoning startup in a distinctly un-Kickstarter like way. How so? By crowdfunding projects through social networks, word of mouth and whatever else fits the bill.

Anton Breytenbach, Jay Thomson and Jaco van der Bank are the trio founders behind Crowdinvest. Breytenbach is the CEO, Thomson the CTO and Van der Bank the SBA.

According to Thomson, Crowdinvest cost R2-million “to iron out the various legal matters of running a business of this scope in South Africa,” and R1-million for infrastructure and backbone development including the website.  So, R3-million for the world’s first crowd-sourced investment platform? Sounds like a dream come true.

Crowdinvest’s purpose is to “create wealth and make things happen”. What can potential investors sink their cash into? Causes, innovation, new designs, the arts, faith, and whatever else Crowdinvest offers. The options for creating wealth are as multitude as the projects. Profit share, business equity, capital assets, property and personal lending can turn a small investment into an immense dream.

Everything has a beginning

Even the Fortune-500 companies began with a single dollar. The hopeful small business can launch its project on Crowdinvest, set an investment amount, explain its business and attach a time limit to the investing opportunity. Thomson says that users are more likely to invest “if there is a sense of urgency”. If the company doesn’t raise the required funds in the allocated time, the users money is refunded and the project shuts down on Crowdinvest.

Open discussions

Crowdinvest is an open platform, with API’s in the next phase to be made freely available for third-party uses. This can be boiled down to an embedded window in a website, as one example. The site is also open to the development of new funding models, such as a monthly subscription. If the user can build it, Crowdinvest can be endlessly shaped.

Opportunities are endless

One well-known startup which has placed itself in the hands of Crowdinvest includes Zoe-X, the online brain-training platform. Crowdinvest isn’t beholden to the online arena, even offering investors the chance to own their own helicopter, or community energy project.

Competitors? There are a few international giants which cram into Crowdinvest’s space. There’s Kickstarter.com of course, but this site is aimed at “creative project curation”. Then there’s Crowdcube which runs dangerously close to Crowdinvest, but is an “equity-based” crowdfunding platform. Does Crowdinvest stand apart from its peers then? As the site enters its launch phase this month, the users will become the yardstick which measures its success. Visit Crowdinvest now.

Author Bio

Steven Norris: Staff reporter
Steven Norris is a born writer, living in Claremont, Cape Town and educated in the ways of graphic design but destined to follow in the footsteps of the worlds greatest authors. He has had many years of experience as an SEO copywriter, learning the ropes the hard way before... More
  • Max

    Cool idea, but R3m and they couldn’t hire a designer?
    The video is completely amateurish and they could do a lot better on their site design.
    Other than that it’s a very interesting idea and Iook forward to seeing where this goes.

  • http://twitter.com/naeem_coza Naeem Mayet

    lol @297de8222a8dd4a6830a5fad1eb6f108:disqus
     max – i thought the same thing.  3 bars, surely they could throw even 10k at a really good design. Even if it meant buying a premade template and customizing it.

  • Anton Breytenbach

    Hi @Max @Naeem. Thank you for your comments. We want to keep improving and welcome your feedback! The current website is Beta V0.1 and the three founders have financed the business personally, using limited resources intelligently to make Crowdinvest happen. In the bigger picture, the money spent is very little in what we have achieved. We also tried to utilize our own community as a community project and did not hire expensive designers etc. for start-up. We are at the moment more focused on making the platform work and providing a tool that was never available to business and project creators before, than adding the bells and whistles at this point in time. As soon as the platform has proven successful, we will commercialize it more, also in the design sense. Zoe-X, the first start-up to pitch on Crowdinvest.co.za, raised more than R10,000 investmet in only 48 hours. This is success that we hope we can build on. Please join us on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/crowdinvest to provide regular feedback and suggestions. See you there. Thank you.

  • http://www.facebook.com/james.munday.359 James Munday

    1 successful project for 5000r everything else has failed , site needs polish and advertising , also its hard to get your money out of the site. Stay far far away for at least a few months until they iron this out.