Entrepreneurship News and Events
Crowdfunding bill passes Assembly
* Up to $1 million could be raised for a start-up through small pledges
March 11, 2015, 1:21 AM
By MELANIE ANZIDEI
Small businesses and start-ups in New Jersey soon may have another avenue for reaching investors.
Legislation approved by the Assembly on Monday would enable emerging small businesses and start-ups to find investors through crowdfunding, a technique very much like an online fundraiser. The bill defines the process as the financing of a business venture using the Internet to raise small amounts of money from a larger number of investors.
The legislation, which passed 75-0 with one abstention, would allow businesses to invite small investors to offer capital through a pledge. Once pledges for a project reached a predetermined limit, the businesses would move forward with the funding. The funds will be released only if the target amount is reached.
To Mario Casabona, founder and chief executive officer of Tech Launch — a technology start-up accelerator in Clifton — crowdfunding offers an alternative way for start-ups to gain access to capital.
"It's a good thing for entrepreneurs," enabling more investors to fund a business, he said in a phone interview Tuesday. But, he added, "it doesn't make it easier."
For a small business, one challenge of having many investors is ensuring that it maintains communication with all of them, Casabona said. The legislation requires companies to provide quarterly reports to their investors.
Crowdfunding also puts pressure on the sites that facilitate the fundraising. These sites are responsible for ensuring the legitimacy of fundraisers and abiding by regulations, said Daryl Bryant, the co-founder and CEO of Saddle Brook-based StartupValley.
According to the bill, the sum of all proceeds shall not exceed $1 million with certain exceptions, and must be made through an Internet site. A business cannot accept an investment exceeding $5,000 from any single source unless that source is an accredited investor. These types of investors would include individuals with relatively high incomes, banks, insurance companies and trusts.
Bryant said the measure is valuable for emerging businesses because it enables anyone, not just solely accredited investors, to invest in the company.
"Gaining access to capital is one of the most frustrating things," said Bryant, who has been a small business owner for 12 years.
The bill is a version of the federal Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act, or the JOBS Act, which became law in 2012. Parts of the law are pending implementation, leading to the Assembly measure. A Senate version is under consideration.
Scarlet Startups: The Art of the Pitch - The Secret of Body Language
Your career path will be accelerated by your ability to communicate in front of large audiences. Enhance your abilities in this fun interactive workshop!
Date: Wednesday, March 25, 2015
Time: 5:30 PM
Location: Busch Campus Student Center, Rm 122 - 604 Bartholomew Road, Piscataway, NJ 08854
Keynote Speaker: Stacee Mandeville of Red Leaf Coaching
Launch NJ: Life Sciences Hub Meetup comes to Rutgers
Date: Monday, March 2, 2015
Time: 6:00 PM
Location: Life Sciences Auditorium on Busch Campus - 145 Bevier Road, Piscataway, NJ 08854
Keynote Speaker: Dr. Joachim Kohn, Director, the New Jersey Center for Biomaterials, Board of Governors Professor, Entrepreneur, Rutgers,The State University of New Jersey
Additional Speakers will discuss funding sources for Rutgers entrepreneurs
Brandy Houser - Celdara Medical - “Celdara Medical, LLC: An inventor-centric commercialization model”
Mike Wiley - Foundation Venture Capital Group - “Seed & Pre-seed Funding for the Commercialization of Health Care Related Technology “
Scarlet Startups - INSPIRATIONAL SPEAKER – Croix Sather
Head, Heart, and Soul of a Champion
Date: Thursday, January 22, 2015
Time: 6:30 PM
Location: Room 5085, Rutgers Business School, Piscataway, NJ
The media calls him “Marathon Man” because of his astonishing accomplishments and life story. In just two years, Croix went from a non-runner to a 2,621 mile Run Across America in just 100 days and then he broke the world record running 146 miles though Death Valley, CA, the harshest and hottest environment on the planet.
Croix is an internationally celebrated author and Inspirational Speaker in the field of personal and business consulting and the psychology of success. He is a celebrity runner and speaker for Hope for the Warriors www.hopeforthewarriors.org and as a panel expert for Sunwarrior www.sunwarrior.com/Running/ Superfood nutrition. He has authored four books, hosted a radio show, and has appeared in hundreds of television, radio, and newspaper articles. He continues his legacy by sharing his experiences as an inspirational speaker to an array of industries.
6:30 - 7:00: Pizza & Networking
7:00 - 8:00: Speakers with Q&A
8:00 - TBD: Networking
Solve for X, a Global Initiative from Google, is coming to Rutgers!
Do think you have a truly transformative technology that is going to change the world? Apply to participate in the Google Developer Group North Jersey (GDG NJ) Solve for X Event at Rutgers University on February 2nd.
Location: Livingston Campus Student Center, Piscataway, NJ
Solve for X is a global initiative headed up by Google's R&D division which aims to accelerate the progress of pioneers in science and technology who are working on breakthrough technologies (i.e. "moonshots") that will provide radical solutions to the world’s most pressing problems. If you think you have a technology that fits the bill, fill out the short online application at solveforx.gdgnorthjersey.com. The pioneers with the most impressive moonshots will be invited to present at one of the upcoming GDG NJ Solve for X preliminary events in New York, Boston, and New Jersey and ultimately the final event at Rutgers. Pioneers selected to participate in the Rutgers event will have their presentations featured on Google's Solve for X website and may be invited to present at Google [x].
Submissions will be accepted on a rolling basis, but your odds of acceptance are increased the earlier you submit, as this will give the reviewers more time to examine and engage with your concept.
Final submission deadlines to present are as follows:
NYC Preliminary event submission deadline: December 28th, 2014
Somerville, MA (Boston area) Preliminary event submission deadline: January 5th, 2015
Stevens Institute of Technology Preliminary event submission deadline: January 6th, 2015 (Note: We just added this event, so it’s not yet featured on the website but is an option on the moonshot submission form).
I-Corps Information Session - Support for University Entrepreneurs
Date: Tuesday, December 9, 2014 Time: 9:30 am – 11:30 am
Location: Room 174, Busch Student Center, Piscataway, NJ
NSF Innovation Corps (I-Corps) Provides $50,000 grants to NSF-funded researchers to identify valuable commercial applications for their technology, and offers entrepreneurial training to participating teams. The program provides research tools, skills, and resources you need to turn your research into a startup venture. In cases where there isn’t a strong market potential, this program helps teams learn this as quickly and inexpensively as possible.
I-Corps graduates follow these paths:
- SBIR/STTR Phase 1 grants (68% vs. 14%) likelihood of receiving award
- Angel/VC funding
- Patent or technology license to a U.S. company.
This session will provide details on the I-Corps process and will give you an opportunity to speak with fellow Rutgers colleagues who have participated in the program.
Since the I-Corps program focuses on teams, we ask NSF-funded researchers to invite their graduate students and post docs to accompany them to this event.