Crowdfunding is an alternative source of finance in dynamic expansion across all developed economies. Is this form of finance promising at a European scale? Are typical crowdfunding projects attractive to citizens in different Member States? Do project owners aspire to reach out to broader European audiences, rather than their fellow citizens? Which crowdfunding models and what types of projects are the most oriented to an EU-wide market?
Regulatory issues are important in cross-border crowdfunding. However, the key is to find a right balance between regulation and informality of the market, and see how the market is developing.
The overall EU regulatory environment should be friendly to crowdfunding channel: all the different models should be scrutinized in order to identify what there is to be learnt.
With the aim to establish an optimal European policy framework to crowdfunding, various policy options should be examined. In order to allow entrepreneurs to receive different kind of investments, it is of high relevance to analyse how does crowdfunding fit with other sources of finance today and what would be the ideal interaction between these various forms of financing? Can self-regulation or co-regulation deliver in the context of crowdfunding? What issues could be subject to this form of private regulation, under what pre-conditions and governance mechanisms?
Crowdfunding is filling in the gaps between well-established market and is building bridges between players – it should be financially and economy driven and connect savings to investment needs of companies. Crowdfunding involves lot of innovation and experimentation, which is of a particular interest for DG CONNECT. Crowdfunding for science projects show how crowdfunding allow entrepreneurs not only to ask for funding, but also to source experts and advisors among the crowd: in this sense crowdfunding acts as a channel for feedback from the experts to the entrepreneur, who, in this way, receives help for the development of the project. In the Commission political agenda, it should be looked at the ways to support crowdfunding initiatives through H2020 and other instruments but also how crowdfunding could put up communities for advancing social and economic objectives. There are lessons to be learnt to see how the Commission could integrate the process, and if necessary move toward legislative proposals.
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