The Ontario Securities Commission is on a fact finding mission to see if small and medium sized enterprises are subject to too much red tape, and if investors would be willing to “crowd fund” them, forgoing the need for a prospectus.
On January 11th, the OSC will hold a roundtable discussion in Toronto to hear from investors who look at startups, to examine how it might be able to increase the flow of money to smaller companies while protecting investors.
Crowdfunding measures, if allowed by the OSC, would allow smaller companies to sell securities over the internet.
In the U.S. crowdfunding measures have met with a mixed reaction. Some groups, such as the North American Securities Administrators Association say the movement has all the markings of an investor trap, while others say crowd funding portals like Kickstarter are nothing less than the future of business.
On April 5th of 2012, President Barack Obama signed the bipartisanally supported Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act or JOBS Act, into law. The bill allows for companies to increase the number of shareholders it may have before registering with the SEC, relieves certain kinds of “emerging growth companies,” from some regulatory and disclosure requirements, and allows U. S citizens to invest through government approved internet “funding portals”, with limits based on personal net worth.
The OSC investor round-table discussion will take place on Tuesday, June 11, 2013, from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. on the 22nd floor of the OSC’s offices, which are located at 20 Queen St. West, in Toronto. Those wishing to participate are asked to RSVP by June 6, 2013.