EC exploring the added value of potential regulatory action

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Following a year of dedicated work from the European Crowdfunding Network and other organisations the European Commission has now launched a public consultation inviting stakeholders to share their views about crowdfunding: its potential benefits, risks, and the design of an optimal policy framework to untap the potential of this new form of financing.

The European Crowdfunding Network welcomes this public consultation. Commissioner for Internal Market and Services Michel Barnier who’s team is in charge, says: “Crowdfunding – this alternative form of fundraising that is collective, participatory and interactive – is becoming increasingly important. It has the potential to bridge the finojects. That is what I am asking.”

The consultation covers all forms of crowdfunding, ranging from donations and rewards to financial investments. Everyone is invited to share their opinion and fill in the on-line questionnaire, including citizens who might contribute to crowdfunding campaigns and entrepreneurs who might launch such campaigns. National authorities and crowdfunding platforms are also particularly encouraged to reply. The consultation will run until 31 December 2013.

In 2012 the European Crowdfunding Network has led the discussion in Brussels through the collaborative white paper “A Framework for European Crowdfunding“, which we distributed to relevant parties within Brussels. Follow up discussions and adhoc research for the EC lead Vice President and Commissioner of the Digital Agenda, Neelie Kroes announce her support for Crowdfunding in December 2012. Workshops and statements of the Directorate General for Industry and Enterprise, including an inspiring keynote at the 1st International CrowCon organised by the European Crowdfunding Network this May in Vienna, together with the Austrian Chambers of Commerce, went alongside.

The Directorate for Internal Market and Services organised a 400 participants strong Workshop on Crowdfunding on 3 June 2013 in Brussels at which the European Crowdfunding Network and many of its members were strongly present on panels and in the audience. The current public consultation is a further milestone in developing a better understanding of crowdfunding within the European institutions, a necessary step among others before any regulatory issues can be seriously discussed.

The European Crowdfunding Network will continue its work and help policy makers access information and networks in order to stimulate a transparent and professional crowdfunding industry within an enabling regulatory framework. We are pleased that the European Commission has taken this step to openly seek information and encourage all interested parties to submit HERE

The European Crowdfunding Network asked on its web poll in August and September 2013 “Do we need a European Crowdfunding regulation?” The absolut majority, 63% of respondents, said “Yes, the existing regulation is too fragmented and inappropriate.”, with some 28% saying “We need less regulation for crowdfunding, not more. The European Commission should exempt crowdfunding from the current regimes.” Only 9% believe that “The current regime is sufficient. National Governments must exploite the exiting options better.”

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