Online jobs board CareerOne is hoping to help entrepreneurs raise capital by launching a new crowdfunding business line this year.
The feature will be launched in partnership with “one or multiple” existing crowdfunding sites, according to CareerOne CEO Karen Lawson.
Australian law restricts equity crowdfunding, which is why most crowdfunding sites sell the promise of a product instead of shares.
Like Kickstarter, Indiegogo and Pozible (all of which operate in Australia), CareerOne’s crowdfunding feature will let start-ups raise funds by selling embryonic products to the public.
“We’ve been looking to work with a reward-based crowdfunding business,” Lawson told Business Insider Australia. “We’re in discussions right now.
“If you look at the last six months, Kickstarter has come to Australia, Indiegogo has launched in Australian dollars, and Pozible is the local number one. It’s still very much focused around the arts and creatives.
“[Crowdfunding] is a campaign. You need to work out getting promotion, getting engagement. In all instances, it’s been shown that where you have communities of passion, you’re more likely to have engagement with individuals who get what you’re doing.
“We’ve spent a lot of time over the last 12 months building communities within industry verticals – [for example,] healthcare, mining – they’ve all got their own websites and Facebook communities.
“So if you’re an engineer with a great idea for an engineering business or a project that could make a difference in that world, that community that we have would get it – they would understand and want you to be successful.
“The idea is to help entrepreneurs connect with other individuals who believe in their product, service and idea, who will help fund the idea.”
CareerOne’s crowdfunding business line is part of its large-scale shift from a loss-making jobs board to a digital media business.
Under the new strategy, announced today, CareerOne will focus more heavily on monetising its web traffic and jobs listings data through a targeted advertising sales.