UPDATE: Walker signs crowdfunding bill at research park

UPDATED Thursday, November 7, 2013 --- 1:31 p.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Gov. Scott Walker has signed a bill allowing crowdfunding for the online sale of stocks in fledgling companies.

The proposal Walker signed Thursday passed unanimously in the Legislature and has broad support in Wisconsin's business community.

Popular online crowd funding sites like Kickstarter only allow for people to make donations to a certain cause, often in exchange for a token of appreciation like a T-shirt or bumper sticker.

The new Wisconsin law will allow investors to purchase equity in a company. Backers say it's a simple way to help small businesses by opening them up to a wide pool of potential investors.

Wisconsin is one of the first states nationwide to allow for such investing through crowdfunding.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press

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UPDATED Thursday, November 7, 2013 --- 9:26 a.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Gov. Scott Walker is heading to the University of Wisconsin research park to sign a bill allowing crowdfunding for the online sale of stocks in fledgling companies.

The proposal Walker intends to sign Thursday passed unanimously in the Legislature and has broad support in Wisconsin's business community.

Popular online crowd funding sites like Kickstarter only allow for people to make donations to a certain cause, often in exchange for a token of appreciation like a T-shirt or bumper sticker.

The Wisconsin bill would allow investors to purchase equity in a company. Backers say it's a simple way to help small businesses by opening them up to a wide pool of potential investors.

Wisconsin will be one of the first states nationwide to allow for such investing through crowdfunding.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press

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UPDATED Tuesday, October 8, 2013 --- 7: 32 p.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The Wisconsin state Senate has passed a bill designed to help small businesses in the state find investors online.

The bill passed unanimously Tuesday would let businesses use a model popularized by online crowdfunding sites like Kickstarter.

On those sites, the public can donate money to help finance projects but the bill would allow Wisconsin investors to purchase stock and equity in a business.

Supporters say the measure is a good way to help small businesses succeed at no cost to the state.

Wisconsin would be one of the first states to offer stock sales through crowdfunding. Only two other states -- Kansas and Georgia -- have passed similar laws allowing it.

The bill passed the Assembly last week unanimously and now heads to Gov. Scott Walker.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press

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UPDATED Tuesday, October 8, 2013 --- 3:27 p.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The Wisconsin Assembly has approved a bill that would allow state businesses to sell stock online.

Crowdfunding Internet sites such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo allow the public to donate money to help finance projects, often in exchange for a gift or sample product.

The Republican measure would allow interested investors to purchase stock and equity in a business, not just make a donation, using the same online crowdfunding methods. Wisconsin residents who aren't accredited or certified investors could purchase up to $10,000 in stock. Business could raise up to $1 million without an audit or up to $2 million if they are audited.

Kansas and Georgia have passed similar laws.

The Assembly approved the measure on a unanimous voice vote Tuesday afternoon. The bill goes next to the state Senate.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press

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UPDATED Tuesday, October 8, 2013 --- 10:04 a.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The Wisconsin Assembly is poised to approve a bill that would allow Wisconsin businesses to sell stock to investors online.

Crowdfunding Internet sites such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo allow the public to donate money to help finance projects, often in exchange for a gift or sample product.

The Republican measure would allow interested investors to purchase stock and equity in a business, not just make a donation, using the same online crowdfunding methods. Wisconsin residents who aren't accredited or certified investors could purchase up to $10,000 in stock. Business could raise up to $1 million without an audit or up to $2 million if they are audited.

Kansas and Georgia have passed similar laws.

The Assembly is expected to vote on the proposal Tuesday afternoon.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press

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UPDATED Tuesday, August 13, 2013 --- 10:47 a.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Wisconsin small businesses could sell stock shares to potential investors online under a proposal that its backers says takes the popular Kickstarter model to a new level.

The measure circulated Tuesday for co-sponsors would create an exemption in Wisconsin law to allow crowd funding for small businesses that are looking to sell equity.

Kickstarter offers goods and services for sale, but not stock. The Wisconsin proposal would allow companies to offer up to 50 shares of stock for sale, without having to meet state regulations that bill sponsors say typically cost about $30,000 to complete.

David Dupee is the founder of CraftFund, a Milwaukee-based crowd funding platform for craft brewers nationwide. He says Wisconsin can be a pioneer in this area as only two other states have passed similar laws.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press

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Posted Tuesday, August 13, 2013 --- 9:37 a.m.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Three Republican lawmakers want to tap into the popular crowd funding wave to help out Wisconsin's small businesses.

The lawmakers plan to unveil a bill Tuesday they say will change state law to allow for crowd funding to increases access to capital for small businesses.

The crowd funding concept allows individuals to contribute money online to reach a funding goal set by a project creator or business owner. Funders on these sites typically receive some reward based on the amount of their contribution.

One of the most well-known crowd funding Internet sites is Kickstarter. It allows for a broad range of projects, while other sites are more specialized.

Reps. David Craig and Chad Weininger in the Assembly and Sen. Leah Vukmir in the Senate are sponsoring the bill.

Copyright 2013: Associated Press


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