Exclusive: US investment firm Capital Advisors aims to boost crowdfunding in Philippines

Crowdfund Capital Advisors principal Sherwood Neiss (visual from DTI Philippines).

US-based investment firm Crowdfund Capital Advisors (CCA) is looking for a partner to help boost crowdfunding in Philippines.

CCA is recognized as a global thought leader in the area of crowdfund investing and early-stage venture finance.

In an interview with DEALSTREETASIA, CCA principal Sherwood Neiss said it is already proven that crowdfunding works not just in the US or in the UK but also in Israel and Middle East countries and that Malaysia has even pioneered the equity crowdfunding market in Asia.

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Neiss believes the Philippines can do better than all the other countries in Asia when it comes to crowdfunding, since it has more people than Malaysia and Australia, a population size that gives greater potential in terms of gross domestic product (GDP). The real issue lies with “having the desire” to do crowdfunding.

“Malaysia has already set the stage on how this will play out. New Zealand set the framework that should be replicated in the region. But here’s the reality. You got more people than the rest of those countries and you got a more GDP potential because of it. So if you have that ability and you need to have the desire, you can do a heck lot more than all the rest of the countries in Asia,” Neiss said.

Malaysia currently has 30.7 million population, Australia 24.2 million, and the Philippines with over 100 million at an average age of 24 years old.

Also Read: Singapore: CoAssets expands Australian ops, to commence business crowdfunding

CCA has recently been awarded a project by the WorldBank, called the “Crowdfunding: Unlocking early-state financing for developing country entrepreneurs.”

In central and south America, CCA is also partnered with Inter-American Development Bank, while in the Middle East CCA works with governments in those countries.

Neiss addressed the Slingshot Philippines (SlingshotPH) conference last Thursday, an event organized by the Department of Trade and Industry that served as a dialogue for government and the startup and innovation ecosystem to work together to address and propose policy or similar interventions. It was a joint program of action for the strategy to develop enterprises called Philippine Innovation Economy to deliver its fullest potentials.

During his talk on “Dialogue on Funding”, Neiss argued there is nothing new in the Philippines when it comes to the crowdfunding hurdles and that similar problems are present in other countries. What CCA can bring is to create a policy report that shows what the Philippines is doing right and how crowdfunding could fit into that.

Also Read: Malaysian venture builder AppShack to tap crowdfunding to raise funds

“I’ve come to realize that nobody trusts their governments, nobody thinks their entreprenuers are trained enough. The way in which I would suggest we should follow is the same thing that we’ve been doing in every country that we go to in the world, which is to create a business case for why crowdfunding is a good thing for the Philippines and it starts with understanding how does entrepreneurship work in the Philippines,” he said.

Neiss noted CCA ideally needs to find a partner in the Philippines that would want to work with the kind of engagement with their company.

“The partner is someone who would take everything they know about being an entreprenuer and building this mini-Silicon Valleys, what you know about financing companies, crowdfunding and policy, and help us create that is something unique for the country,” he said.

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