Drinkers can now share in more than just the communal bar snacks at a Victorian pub set to be crowdfunded under new Australian equity crowdfunding rules.
The Sporting Globe is looking to set up its latest franchised pub in Plenty Valley, just west of Melbourne, and has opened its expressions of interest to raise $700,000, with punters able to pitch in as little as $50.
CEO James Sinclair told Stockhead equity crowdfunding opened up the realm of investment to a wider audience.
“It makes sense to offer our customers a piece of the pie – it creates an intrinsic loyalty if patrons have skin in the game,” he said.
“I think it is exciting and if it works it can open up an avenue for younger operators that are good but just don’t have the access to capital.”
The CEO and founder is behind eight other franchises, each of which can cost more than $1 million to set up.
Equity crowdfunding legislation was passed late last year, with first licences issued for seven providers in early Jan.
The process allows investors to support early stage private companies in the same was as platforms like kickstarter, but to receive equity instead of a product or service.
Rules from the regulator cap investments at $5,000 per company per year, a conservative safeguard as opposed to the UK regulations, some of which are uncapped.
Overseas, the concept of crowdfunding a pub is nothing new — UK-based success story BrewDog has raised millions of Pounds to fund venues — a strategy James is keen to emulate.
“We looked through conventional means of raising capital but this really stood out for the way we do business,” he said.
“In a franchise model we are all about partnering with local operators and this is the ultimate model to do so. We expect that there will be a lot of people in the local area who will want to be involved.”
The Sporting Globe is running their equity crowdfunding through Birchal, with expressions of interest closing on February 9.
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