Strong steps in the Spanish Crowdfunding Ecosystem
On 18 May 2023 EUROCROWD organised the CROWD ES conference in Alicante Spain to launch a professional representation for crowdfunding in Spain for stakeholders from government, business, and innovation. The conference was organised in cooperation with the European Intellectual Property Office. The EUROCROWD Spanish Strategic Group will jointly act as a national network of crowdfunding platforms and stakeholders dedicated to the development of a professional national market.
Representatives of local governments, incubation and acceleration programmes, the start-up and innovation ecosystems and the financial services sector joined the discussion. A key goal was to forge alliances across the different business ecosystems to develop joined research, specific training programs, combinations of financing tools and opportunities for small and medium-sized enterprises in protecting their intellectual property. The overall agenda was linked to the EU 2023 Agenda and designed to build on local market knowledge for ongoing European policy.
“With the formal launch of this Strategic Group and the support we have gathered over the past years within the local ecosystem, we are looking forward to developing the professional market for crowdfunding service providers in Spain. We are thankful to the support of our partners, such as the EUIPO, in making this happen.”Mauricio O’Brien, Head of Regional Development and Country Manager Spain at EUROCROWD
While the crowdfunding industry in Spain continues to show steady growth, it is evident that there is still room for growth when compared to other markets. Data presented during the conference highlights the need for ongoing efforts to expand the market and leverage the potential of the ECSPR regulation to strengthen the position of Spanish and other European platforms.
The new European regulatory framework ECSPR received praise from platform representatives, explaining that the law is leading to increased project volume and is attracting more investors. ECSPR also provides greater protection to their customers, both project owners and investors. For platforms, it helps to expand their markets and demands increased professional requirements in the management of crowdfunding platforms. Furthermore, while there has been a slight adjustment in nomenclature, greater transparency and accountability have yet to shift the platform's business approach radically. Finally, it is evident that the ECSP strengthens the ability to promote business innovation by helping existing platforms take a firm step forward.
Participants identified traditional "risk" driven investment solutions as a hurdle for financing innovation. Opportunities with alternative, equally demanding investments could lead to a more “creativity and innovation" focused investment solution to finance the real, digital and creative economy. Cases from incubators and accelerators were used to showcase innovation in combining financing tools and to demonstrate highly positive collaboration between science and technology-based startups.
There is still much to be done in promoting and utilising crowdfunding in public-private financing programs. Better connectivity with administrative mechanisms and processes is needed to make match-funding more common and reinforce civic crowdfunding co-financing. Spain has several examples of entities promoting crowdfunding at different levels and types. The EUROCROWD Strategic Group and its Members are looking forward to addressing these opportunities.