By Suze Metherell
Equitise, the only trans-Tasman equity crowd funder, will launch a secondary market allowing investors to trade in real time in Australia and New Zealand in shares of crowd-funded ventures, which have typically been more illiquid investments.
The Auckland and Sydney-based firm, in partnership with Syndex, will build an online exchange where investors can buy and sell shares in Equitise crowd funded companies after the initial offer has closed, using the online exchange during trading periods.
"We want the companies we crowd fund to have a safe, secure and transparent way of trading securities," Equitise co-founder and New Zealand manager Will Mahon-Heap said in a statement.
Auckland-based Syndex has applied to the Financial Markets Authority to become a licensed financial products market, even though the Financial Markets Conduct Act does not currently require it to do so.
Under the FMA's equity crowd funding licensing regime, a platform such as Equitise wanting to give shareholders more liquidity in their investment would first need to get sign-off from the regulator to build a secondary market, where investors could trade equity up to an annual cap of 100 trades.
Using Syndex means Equitise does not need to go through that process.
Companies are able to raise a maximum of $2 million from the 'crowd' in exchange for offering equity through crowd funding platforms.
Since the first licences were awarded in July last year, New Zealand now has seven equity crowd funding platforms and 37 offers have either been run or are underway, of which 24 successfully raised a total $13.3 million.
Syndex is a privately held digital market maker.