Crowd Around

From the edgy new Fox show "Judge, Jury, and Executioner Frank Brown"

Bolstr is navigating the legal complexities of crowdfunding

The law is an ass, or so goes a centuries-old English proverb. This isn’t news to you – at least if you’ve ever tried to replace a lost Social Security card or contest a parking ticket.

Bolstr – a crowdfunding site with a twist – had to carefully navigate the law to get going. Instead of offering investors rewards a la Kickstarter, backers on Bolstr receive returns on their investment through revenue sharing.

“When young business owners are looking to open a second location, for example, they’ll typically ask their friends and family to invest,” Bolstr co-founder Charlie Tribbett told us. “We wanted to open that process up other people in the community to create an army of supporters.”

Easy, right? Hardly.

The Securities Act of 1933 governs these kind of transactions, and that law has only been amended a few times in its 80 year history. If you were talking about crowdfunding and social media in 1933, it’s possible you’d have been hanged as a witch.

And while the JOBS Act should help, implementation is still months, if not years, away.

“We were able to find an underutilized exemption to the Securities Act,” Tribbett said. “Although there are also state specific regulations, so we’ve built all of them into our tech platform, so it’s easy to comply with state by state rules.”

Bolstr is on the hunt for a UI/UX designer – get more information about the opening here.

Now go forth (and keep in mind that “ass” also means donkey, ok?).

Nitty Gritty:

1838: Year Oliver Twist was published, which popularized the phrase “The law is an ass”

1960: Date the musical Oliver!, based on the novel, premiered

1963: Year Davy Jones, the Future Monkee, was nominated for a Tony as the Artful Dodger in Oliver!


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