Crowd Funding Roadmap to host session at M Resort

Crowdfunding Roadmap, which seeks to teach the best practices to investors and entrepreneurs, will host its second annual Global Crowdfunding Convention and Bootcamp Oct. 14-16 at M Resort in Henderson.

The conference has scheduled 50 to 60 speakers, including Jay Abraham, the $9.4 Billion Man, and Susan MacLaury, executive producer of a short documentary “Inocente,” an Academy Award-winning film that was crowdfunded on Kickstarter.

On Sept. 23, Title II of the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act went into effect, meaning small businesses can now solicit early stage investments through social media and crowdfunding.

Previously, private startups were prohibited from collecting seed money from the public.

“It was an 80-year-old securities law that was really outdated and was meant to protect the little old lady from the bad man trying to sell fake stock certificates,” said Ruth Hedges, CEO of Unismart Capital Software Inc. and Crowdfunding Roadmap.

Kickstarter and Indiegogo are among the biggest names in the crowdfunding business, though the marketplace is growing quickly. Today there are more than 700 crowdfunding websites.

From 2011 to 2012, the crowdfunding industry grew from $1.5 billion to $2.7 billion. For this year, it is projected to reach $5 billion.

Crowdfunding is a way to raise money online from small investors. Successes include the Pebble smartwatch, which raised $10.3 million from 69,000 backers in May 2012.

In Las Vegas, a Save the Huntridge campaign netted more than $200,000 to renovate the historic theater.

Hedges said accessibility is one benefit of crowdfunding.

Unlike relying on bank loans or venture capitalists, crowdfunding is a way to turn friends and online followers into investors.

“There are no gatekeepers,” Hedges said.

Among her tips are to market and network before launching a crowdfunding campaign and to not go it alone.

Hedges said having a team of five increases chances of raising capital by 70 percent.

For more information, visit

Contact reporter Kristy Totten at or 702-477-3809. Follow on Twitter.

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