LISTEN LIVE KPR - On Air: Listen Live to classical, jazz and NPR news Schedule LATEST
KPR 2 - On Air: Listen live to KPR's all talk-radio service, KPR2 Recordings

Share this page              

Small Investors To Fund Small Businesses On Internet Sites

The idea of crowdfunding, raising money from lots of people on the Internet, got a boost from Washington on Friday. The Securities and Exchange Commission approved a system that allows small businesses and startups to solicit funding from small investors.

This is not Kickstarter where people just give money to individuals or businesses to support a great idea or product and get nothing in return, except maybe a thank you. What the SEC approved is a system where small businesses and startups can seek investors, to buy their shares or give them a loan, on a regulated Internet portal.

Let's say you own a hardware store in a small town and you want to expand. You might use your customer mailing list to alert the community that you want to build another store in the next town over. You would put your business plan and financial information on the Internet portal, or a website run by an investment firm, and investors could go online and with a click of a button invest in your business.

Right now only qualified investors with high incomes or a high net worth are allowed to do this kind of crowdfund investing. But the system approved by the SEC would allow people of modest means to invest up to 10 percent of their income or net worth, which ever is lower, each year.

Some consumer watchdogs argue it's a bad idea to allow people of modest means, who may be financially unsophisticated, to invest in this way — especially since the majority of startups fail and investors could lose some or all of their money. We'll see. The system will be up and running around the middle of next year.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit

Tower Frequencies

91.5 FM KANU Lawrence, Topeka, Kansas City
89.7 FM KANH Emporia
99.5 FM K258BT Manhattan
97.9 FM K250AY Manhattan (KPR2)
91.3 FM  KANV Junction City, Olsburg
89.9 FM K210CR Atchison
90.3 FM KANQ Chanute
96.1 FM K241AR Lawrence (KPR2)

See the Coverage Map for more details

Contact Us

Kansas Public Radio
1120 West 11th Street
Lawrence, KS 66044
Download Map
785-864-4530 (Main Line)
888-577-5268 (Toll Free)