Equity-based crowdfunding platform Venturecrowd has today launched a campaign aiming to raise between $3 million and $4 million for mobile payments startup Ingogo.
The company is hoping to raise up to a third of its $12 million round through the crowdfunding platform which is run by Artesian Venture Partners.
If successful, the raising, which will close in May, could be the largest equity crowdfunding round to date in Australia.
“VentureCrowd has helped ingogo reach a range of investors we simply wouldn’t reach through traditional channels and we’re pleased to be working with them again on this funding round,” Ingogo founder and CEO, Hamish Petrie said.
Ingogo previously raised $1.2 million million on the crowdfunding platform as part of its previous $9.3 million round late last year.
“The last raising through Venture Crowd would have placed it in the top 10 US crowdfunded raises. This one will take it up another level,” Petrie said.
Earlier this week Ingogo announced it would be expanding its taxi app and payments platform from Sydney and Melbourne and into Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide. It also revamped its app to improve the user experience.
“This capital will drive all these initiatives harder, has allowed us to upscale our growth and revenue forecasts and put us in a great position for an ASX listing. We will pick the right moment for that,” Petrie said.
The company is still looking to list on the ASX in the future. This funding is about fuelling growth until that time.
Investors can invest as little as $1000, with no maximum, on the VentureCrowd platform.
Crowdsourced equity funding for startups is something the federal government is currently looking into, with draft legislation expected to be released before the spring.
It’s a fundraising method which has been billed by the recent inquiry into Australia’s financial system, led by David Murray, as one way to boost innovation and competition, as well as support local startups.
As a model, it’s relatively new and the long-term results are yet to be seen.
VentureCrowd CEO Jeremy Colless said strong investment rounds is one way to ensure crowdfunding solidifies itself in the fundraising environment.
“We have already validated the value of equity crowdfunding in past investment rounds into high-growth companies such as Ingogo, but this latest round proves this investment method is here to stay,” he said.
“Sophisticated investors are immensely interested in gaining access to opportunities they wouldn’t see elsewhere. That possibilities would increase immensely if legislative changes enabled retail investors to take part as well.”