If you tuned into Bloomberg last month, you may have seen Youngro Lee ’00, co-founder and chief executive officer of NextSeed, discuss new crowdfunding regulation with Betty Liu, anchor of Bloomberg Markets. NextSeed became the first SEC-registered funding portal under Title III of the JOBS Act on April 28.
Youngro co-founded NextSeed—headquartered in Houston, Texas—with Abe Chu ’00 and Robert Dunton ’00 with the goal of building local economies by connecting Main Street shops in need of cash with investors in their community.
Under the new regulation, private U.S. businesses are now able to crowdfund up to $1 million per year by offering securities through online funding platforms. The law gives companies like NextSeed permission to sell securities online to anyone, not just accredited investors. NextSeed, the now-national funding platform, levels the playing field by giving small businesses access to capital they couldn’t secure with a traditional bank loan, and by opening up a new revenue stream for investors who have been historically excluded from investing in private businesses. Since launching in 2015, the alums helped raise over $1 million for Texas entrepreneurs through revenue-sharing loans (debt securities).