On Wednesday 3 August Techboard held our first investor focussed event. The event was aimed at educating investors about the new Innovation Tax Incentive and informing them about Techboard’s increased emphasis on investment and our repositioning as a platform where investors will be able to find Innovation Tax Incentive eligible investments.
We had a great turnout for the event which was held at the Offices of BDO, our partners for the event. BDO’s Marc Loftus briefed the audience on the innovation tax incentive. We had Miles Burke from 6Q and Kevin Forcier from Storekat talking about their companies and their plans to raise capital to grow their businesses. Rob Nathan from Vocus Upstart spoke about his accelerator program and introduced the latest very exciting cohort which have just commenced the program. Find information on the Cohort at Vocus Upstart’s Techboard page.
Our very own Peter van Bruchem also talked about how investors can currently utilise Techboard as an investment discovery platform. Peter also outlined the first steps we are taking very soon to enhance Techboard as a place to find exciting Startups and Tech Companies (and Early Stage Innovative Companies) to invest in.
When Techboard launched we accepted that companies have different reasons for wanting to raise their profile, with investors, customers, stakeholders, potential employees/team members and fans. We decided not to dictate how they could use Techboard, what sort of announcements they could make etc. Even without a strong investor or investment focus we attracted a moderate investor audience both on Techboard itself and via social media.
We have always recognised that access to capital was a major issue for the success of WA startups and tech companies and our plans and strategies have always been developed with that issue in mind. The shifts that are happening nationally in the field of startup funding have encouraged us to place a greater emphasis on investment. To this end, a while ago we began putting out more and more useful investment relevant content on the site and via social media for companies and investors alike, centred initially around the innovation tax incentive. The Innovation Tax Incentive legislation is expected to increase the demand for opportunities to invest in Early Stage Innovation Companies (a subset of the companies listed on Techboard) from investors already active in the space as well as investors who have never invested in unlisted Tech Stocks. But where are these investors going to find tax incentive eligible investments?
We believe there is a shortage of ways in which investors (especially those new to the space) can find and research opportunities to invest in unlisted companies. To help bridge the investor-company gap we have decided that it wasn’t much of a shift to move from enabling companies to use the platform to promote themselves generally to promoting their capital raisings.
The promotion of capital raisings by unlisted companies is tightly regulated so in order to avoid the companies themselves or Techboard infringing the corporations law we are setting up as a Business Introduction Service, which is reasonably straightforward.
Other than notifying the Australian Securities and Investments Commission, our next step will be to open up investor registrations so that investors will be able to see investor-only content on Techboard and receive special investor alerts. We will be activating this functionality within weeks but in the meantime we encourage investors to have a good look at what Techboard currently offers in terms of company search, announcements, our Startup Ranking as well as the ability to follow companies and receive alerts when the company updates their profile or posts announcements.
Once we have enabled Investors to signup we will be moving to enable companies to promote opportunities to our registered investor audience. With this increase in investment emphasis we aim to help open up opportunities to invest in some great local startups and leverage from the work we have done over the last year since going live with Techboard.com.au.
Due to the regulation of the fundraising space the bulk of opportunities promoted via Techboard are likely to be accessible only by non-retail investors. We do however strongly believe wealthy retail investors (not just the often quoted “mum and dad” investors who apparently cannot be trusted to invest in riskier opportunities) deserve access to quality investment opportunities via a platform such as Techboard and shouldn’t be limited to listed stocks and opportunities their tax advisor/accountant has heard about.
Over the coming months we will be enabling Investors to register for investor updates (which will initially be free to register for access), receive investor alerts when opportunities are posted, search for investment opportunities including advanced filtering (eg tax incentive eligibility status).
We will continue to publish general information on the site accessible to general users and we will be tightening up access to information on Techboard to only registered users. Only registered investors will be able to access investment opportunities through Techboard.
Investor registration will soon be activated so if you are not already a Techboard member Sign Up NOW to make sure you stay informed of our developments.
5 August 2016