Changes to start-up crowdfunding exemption will increase access to capital for B.C. issuers
Vancouver – The British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC) today announced improvements to crowdfunding rules that will enable B.C.-based issuers to access investors in Alberta when conducting crowdfunding campaigns. The amendments also permit an increased investment, for some investors, of up to $5,000.
“With these amendments, B.C. is harmonizing the crowdfunding regime and providing start-up and early stage issuers with access to more potential investors and more investment dollars,” said Peter Brady, Executive Director of the BCSC. “The BCSC consults extensively with B.C. technology industry businesses and stakeholders, and we’re proud that those consultations are yielding real results.”
The BCSC’s Tech Team recommended the amendments to B.C. Instrument 45-535 Start-up Crowdfunding Registration and Prospectus Exemptions (BCI 45-535) following stakeholder consultations and after reviewing the results of the BCSC’s 2017 Tech Survey. The BCSC launched the survey in January 2017 to engage with technology industry stakeholders and businesses and learn what challenges and opportunities the sector currently faces.
Survey respondents who were involved in crowdfunding identified harmonization across jurisdictions as one of their biggest concerns. The new amendments take steps to resolve that issue by allowing an interface between the B.C. and Alberta crowdfunding rules. Respondents also recommended increasing the investment amounts allowed under the current crowdfunding rules. The new amendments raise the investment limit from $1,500 to $5,000, if the investor has obtained advice from a registered dealer that the investment is suitable for them.
“Consultation with industry is very important to us, and we want to thank everyone who took the time to provide their input through the survey,” said Brady. “We value the insights of fintech businesses and stakeholders, and we believe that these crowdfunding amendments show our dedication to working with industry.” We anticipate issuing a publication later this year that will summarize the results of the survey and our other fintech stakeholder consultations.
Information on BCI 45-535, including guidance tailored for funding portals, issuers and investors, can be found on the BCSC’s Start-up Crowdfunding webpage. The BCSC's Tech Team can be reached by email at TechTeam@bcsc.bc.ca.
About the British Columbia Securities Commission (www.bcsc.bc.ca)
The British Columbia Securities Commission is the independent provincial government agency responsible for regulating capital markets in British Columbia through the administration of the Securities Act. Our mission is to protect and promote the public interest by fostering:
• A securities market that is fair and warrants public confidence
• A dynamic and competitive securities industry that provides investment opportunities and access to capital
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