August 15, 2013
45% of Fortune 500 Co.s in 2010 were founded by immigrant or child of one
Is Immigration a Solution for Economic Growth?
Workforce Immigration Trends
Reports show that immigration secures huge economic benefits through job creation and increased GDP. The tech talent crunch has been a persistent story throughout the recession and recovery, American companies need access to highly skilled international workers in order to compete. If we do not allow highly skilled foreign workers into the US, they will contribute to another country’s economy instead of ours, and America would risk losing its preeminent place as the world’s business powerhouses, and the Fortune 500 companies of the future.
More than forty percent of the 2010 Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants or their children; and seven of the ten most valuable brands in the world come from American companies founded by immigrants or children of immigrants. Many of America’s greatest brands inlcuding Apple, Google, AT&T, Budweiser, Colgate, eBay, General Electric, IBM, and McDonald’s, were founded by an immigrant or the child of an immigrant, according to Partnership for a New American Economy.
The “New American” Fortune 500 report states that immigrants spur job creation across all industries, including the highest growth sectors:
- 45% of high-tech firms from the Fortune 500 had either an immigrant or child of an immigrant among its founders,
- 50% of the medical equipment and device makers, including the three largest players by revenue, were founded by immigrants or their children,
- Immigrant-founded Fortune 500 companies employ 3.6 million workers around the world today,
- Fortune 500 companies founded by immigrants to the United States generated more than $1.7 trillion in revenues in 2010; companies founded by immigrants or children of immigrants generated more than $4.2 trillion in revenues that year.
The Brookings Institute’s Hamilton Project reports on the impact of new immigration on wages. While some worry about a negative impact on wages resulting from new immigration, several studies have shown that on average, immigration can positively impact wages and opportunities for Americans. When immigrants are hired into lower paid positions, American businesses and farms can expand their capacity which then provides new opportunities and better pay for more Americans. When there is a shortage of the right skills in the labor marketplace and highly skilled immigrants are able to enter the workforce, then American companies benefit in their competitiveness and capacity, again providing more jobs and opportunities, better pay follows.
Another report by the Regional Economic Models, Inc (REMI) Key Components of Immigration Reform estimates that the proposed Pathway to Legal Status policy would increase total U.S. employment by 123,000 in 2014, and by 594,000 by 2018. The GDP that would result includes an increase of over $10 billion in 2014, and over $49 billion in 2018. An expansion of the high-skilled (H-1B) worker visa program would add 227,000 jobs by 2014. The report argues for the expansion of lesser-skilled visas (H-2A [farm visas], H-2B [seasonal, peak load, and intermittent worker visas] and W-1 [lesser-skilled nonseasonal worker visas]) as well, citing increases in employment and GDP through increased economic productivity and output. The REMI report states that “expansion of these visas will benefit not only those who receive them, but also the workers and consumers in the U.S. economy as a whole.”
The positive impacts and need for top talent are the inspiration behind the formation of FWD.us by leaders of the US technology community, from tech giants such as Facebook, Google, YouTube, LinkedIn, DropBox, and other household names. FWD.us is a 501(c)(4) advocacy organization committed to promoting policies to keep the American workforce competitive. The group promotes comprehensive immigration reform: Easing immigration for foreign talent and enticing native entrepreneurs to stay in the country are among the group’s goals. The mission is “to build the knowledge economy the US needs to ensure more jobs, innovation and investment,” states Mark Zuckerberg in a Washington Post Op/Ed.
March 28, 2013
August 16, 2012
IT Expanding Demand, Expanding Salaries
The Information Technology sector continues to expand so far in 2012. Investment continues both in infrastructure and in staffing. Software developers, Health IT, and Security Cleared IT are in high demand. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projected that from 2008 to 2018 Computer Software Engineers 283,000 jobs will be added. This adds to the competition for talent
Along with the increased competition for IT talent, are increased salaries, according to the 17th annual Redmond Salary Survey. Salaries stagnated for some years but many employers are seeing the wisdom of salary increases to current employees in order to stay competitive and retain technical talent.
There is also movement by employees at companies that are not giving raises. Despite very specific needs and employer demands for very specific skill sets and experience, for those who change companies, there is an associated salary increase. Given the 3.6 percent unemployment rate among IT workers that upward pressure on salaries looks set to continue.
We are seeing more competition this year for experienced security, networking, analytics, and cleared software developers,” reports Beth Cliff, IT Engineering Recruitment Manager at Redfish Technology. “Hiring companies are carefully evaluating the available talent and in many cases scaling salary offers to meet talent acquisition goals.”
According to the ESJ Salary Survey 2012 Part 1, the largest jump in salary was awarded to enterprise architects (up 10 percent), and Internet managers got the largest bonuses (up 55 percent). Across the board IT professionals in application areas such as SOA, business intelligence and analytics, and enterprise resource planning (ERP) saw salaries rise.
But it isn’t only IT professionals who stand to benefit from raises, according to the recent U.S. Compensation Planning Survey by Mercer, most U.S. employers plan on increasing base salary in 2013. Those who stand to benefit the most are predicted to be the top-performing talent, i.e. the top 8 percent of the workforce.
July 19, 2012
The Biggest Challenge Facing Silicon Valley Companies.
“What’s the biggest challenge facing companies that bank with you?” asked John Cook from Geekwire.
“Finding appropriate talent,” answered Greg Becker, CEO of Silicon Valley Bank. “It is such an anomaly relative to the rest of the general economy that it is hard for the general economy to grasp how different it is.” (more…)
June 28, 2012
What are the hottest growth cities in the tech/STEM sectors?
Forbes recently published an article “The Best Cities For Tech Jobs”, in which the author, Joel Kotkin, analyzed tech-related jobs (including software, data processing and Internet publishing), and STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics-related) employment, in companies spanning manufacturing to business services to finance.
Interestingly, Silicon Valley isn’t in the top five despite the preponderance of high profile tech companies there. In fact, despite offering the most tech and STEM jobs in the U.S., Silicon Valley employed 170,000 less folks in 2011 than in 2000.
Coming in number one is the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue metro, with increased tech employment of 43% and STEM of 18% in the decade from 2001 to 2011. The last two years documented 12% growth in tech jobs, and 7.6% growth in STEM jobs. (more…)
May 28, 2012
2012 Startup Outlook Survey, by Silicon Valley Bank
Every year the Silicon Valley Bank published its Startup Outlook Survey. Intimately acquainted with Silicon Valley startups in high technology, software, and clean technology, SVB has their finger on the industry pulse.
“The 2012 Startup Outlook Survey captures a U.S. economy in transition. The technology sector continues to lead the broader economy out of the downturn, posting strong returns even as the overall economy strains to rebound. Dynamic new sectors are growing rapidly, businesses are hiring and startup executives are bullish on the U.S. market. Optimism and confidence remain high.
Yet warning signs exist — particularly for capital-intensive sectors and those that depend on the government to set market rules. Left unaddressed, these weak spots could grow and ultimately choke the United States’ ability to sustain its position as the leader in innovation based economic growth.”
May 3, 2012
CleanTech Trends – Future Growth and Potential
An Opportunity for Modern Support of Fossil Fuels and CleanTech
Renewable electricity generation doubled from 2006 to 2011. The price of solar, wind, and other clean energy technologies fell. American manufacturers have regained market share in advanced batteries and vehicles.
Employment in the CleanTech sector grew by nearly 12% from 2007 to 2010. In fact, during the middle of the recession (2008 to 2009) the clean economy grew faster than the rest of the economy, expanding at a rate of 8.3%; the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) investment in clean energy projects likely spurred much of this growth. (more…)
April 5, 2012
Job Cuts, Hires, Innovation Sectors and Tech Job Hot Spots
Even as job numbers are improving, some big technology companies are cutting jobs. Yahoo!’s announced it would be laying off two thousand workers in an effort to become more profitably focused on Core Media and Communications, Platforms, and Data. HP plans on organizational realignment to improve performance and drive profitable growth across the entire HP portfolio. Google cut several thousand contractors (temporary workers) but those cuts aren’t included in official layoff numbers. Other companies that have announced or are contemplating layoffs include IBM, Sun, AMD, Applied Materials, Akami, Symantec, and Cisco. Nonetheless, nationwide, planned job cuts declined in March to the lowest level since May 2011, according to outplacement firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas.
The sectors that may absorb some of this tech talent includes: clean tech, alternative energy, biotech, new media, and web 2.0. Big companies that are currently hiring include: Achaogen, Geron, Bio-Rad Labs, Kelly Scientific, Adap-tv, techVenture, and FaceBook. There are also a large number of small start-up companies that are hiring, some working on entirely innovative value propositions and some contracting for functions the big guys have outsourced.
Tech growth is largely in mobile, search, and more broadly communications, where U.S. companies are world leaders. Tech recruiters are thriving, as these sectors lead the growth.
Apps are continuing to grow. More than 500,000 software programs have been written for Apple’s iPhone alone, and almost a million for iPhone, iPad and Android. According to a study by Michael Mandel done for TechNet the app economy has created approximately 466,000 jobs in the United States, up from zero in 2007 when the iPhone was introduced. This total includes app-related positions at companies including Amazon.com Inc. and employment spillovers to the rest of the economy.
The recent report Employment Effects of Advances in Internet and Wireless Technology by Robert J. Shapiro and Kevin A. Hassett indicates that more advanced 3G and Internet technology spurred around 1,585,000 new jobs from April 2007 to June 2011. Current transition to 4G technologies will also lead to increased investment and job growth. In fact, for every 10 percent increase in the adoption of 3G and 4G technologies, the study estimates a potential gain of 231,000 jobs to the US economy in “less than a year” in many sectors from construction to retail.
According to Dice’s Tom Silva, SVP in North America, Raleigh, NC is at the top of the list of fastest growing cities for tech jobs with 50% year over year growth in job opportunities. The tech sector in Houston, TX is augmented by the oil and gas industry’s strength and shows a 37% year over year increase in open jobs. Portland, OR is benefitting from the emergence of cloud and virtualization jobs. And “from north to south, California has more to offer tech professionals than just Silicon Valley. In Sacramento, firms in healthcare and technology are hiring and tech paychecks have jumped six percent yr/yr to $87,000 on average. In San Diego, tech salaries average more than $85,000 annually, while defense and aerospace companies are recruiting.” The top ten tech jobs growth areas for year over year for March, according to Dice, are: Raleigh, NC; Richmond, VA; Houston; Sacramento; Kansas City; Portland, OR; St. Louis; San Diego; Boston; and Denver.
Where the Jobs Are: The App Economy – Dr. Michael Mandel
The Employment Effects of Advances in Internet and Wireless Technology:
Evaluating the Transitions from 2G to 3G and from 3G to 4G
Robert J. Shapiro and Kevin A. Hassett
March 1, 2012
Mobile Future in Focus
The Annual ComScore Report
“2011 was a pivotal year for the mobile industry, marked by the dramatic rise of smartphones in the mainstream, the burgeoning of tablets and other web-enabled connected devices, and a cultural shift toward cross-platform digital media consumption. With mobile becoming an increasing part of comprehensive digital marketing strategies, it becomes more important than ever to understand how the current trends are shaping the mobile environment, with an eye to what lies ahead for 2012.”
The key findings of this report go to Smartphone adoption, the platform war, the surge in application usage, and the retail disruption of the technology.
- Nearly 42% of U.S. mobile subscribers now user smartphones.
- Mobile media usage has surpassed the 50% penetration mark.
- Google Android has captured almost half of the U.S. smartphone market, Apple iOS has nearly 30%.
- Mobile applications usage now equals mobile browsing; categories most accessed include health, retail, commerce-related categories such as electronic payments and auction sites.
- More than 50% of U.S. smartphone users have done a mobile retail search while inside a store, nearly 20% of users scan barcodes, and 12.5% compared prices via their mobile in while in-store.
- Mobile users accessing job listings has grown 74% in 2011 over 2010.
- 77% more U.S. smartphone users accessed social networking or blog destinations via their mobile device year over year.
- Tablets are taking fourth place in digital media consumption after TV, PCs, and smartphones.
Click here to access the complete ComScore report.
February 9, 2012
Employment at an All-Time High
“IT employment has surpassed its previous all-time high—an encouraging sign not only for the IT services industry, but the economy at-large,” stated Mark Roberts, CEO of TechServe Alliance. “Given strong demand for IT talent, high wages these professionals command and the benefits of IT to the broader economy, policymakers should do all they can to create an environment which encourages such work to be performed in the United States,” added Roberts.
TechServe Alliance reports that IT jobs reached the high at 4,107,700 adding 13,300 jobs in January, a monthly record that surpasses the previous all-time high set in September 2008 when IT employment reached 4,088,600. According to revised BLS numbers, IT employment grew by 3.4% in 2011 (compared to 1.5% in 2010).
Forrester Research reports that U.S. companies are choosing to invest in technology, translating to additional hiring by US tech vendors, especially software and IT services companies. While tech is having a positive impact overall on employment, there are at times a shortage of qualified candidates, a recruiting challenge for software and IT services companies.
U.S. tech market was weaker in 2011 than anticipated, and 2012 is thought to be about the same with forecasts for growth in IT goods at 6.8% and services by 6.6% annually; contrast that however with the general GDP, and the growth looks good. Other slower growth sectors are predicted to be hardware and telecom services vendors. Software is predicted to be up slightly, IT consulting and systems integration vendors should have above-average growth, and cloud and smart computing solution vendors are anticipated to outperform.
The CompStudy survey meanwhile shows that executive compensation has remained flat through 2011 among privately-held life sciences companies. Privately-held technology sector companies however saw increases in salary.
The CompStudy survey highlights the mean base salaries of Technology CEOs by sector in 2011:
IT Services/Consulting: $234,500
Digital Media/Content/Information: $203,200
Finding Angel Investors without Advertising
Many rules have restrictions in preventing advertising of your opportunities – so, how do you find angel investors without advertising to the public?
For many capital seekers, they also find that the marketplace is inefficient in terms of finding angel investors for their business.
Entrepreneurs looking for angels must be creative in figuring out ways to get their executive summaries around within the limits of the law. An SEC rule forbids “general advertising and general solicitation” for investors in privately held companies. (Start-ups, by definition, are privately owned.) As a consequence, angel access to interesting deals has been hit-or-miss.
If you don’t make the effort, you don’t have a fair chance of reaping the rewards; and the rewards can really pay off as well.
Angel investors are active investors!
On the other hand, the good news is that angels have a clear field in the early-stage sector.
To find angel investors, you usually engage in what is euphemistically called networking — going to industry events and rubbing elbows with the other participants with the hope that some of them will be looking for investments, mining professional relationships (asking your lawyer and/or accountant for leads, for example), and exhausting your Rolodex.
Local business associations are the most common way to get plugged in, but the networking process takes a lot of time — usually more time than is available after you’ve started operations.
Start your networking before your business
Although business consultants will usually suggest that you set up a business plan as the first step for a business, some business founders will suggest you should establish your contacts well before you even start your business.
Below are some steps we have gathered from various founders
Share your existing contacts
When we set up our first private equity fund, the first thing was to pull out every single business card amongst the three of us (the co-founders), then we built a spread sheet on how we were going to introduce our business to each one of them.
For each contact we had – we assigned: Investor, Business Partner, Customer, Marketing partner. Then put in motion our introduction strategy steps, ex. send introduction letter, mail prospectus. etc.
This is a good way to build up a To-Do list – and back then, CRM was not as advanced as these days, so, we just did it on a very simple spreadsheet – you can now use CRM tools which are much more powerful – if you do use them.
Your professional networks
Amongst our contacts – there are many professional contacts – lawyers, accountants are especially useful for us – as they have their own networks. Through our networking with accountants, we managed to find several prospective investors interested in our business – and through our lawyer, we were introduced to an international investor who wished to invest as part of the immigration process.
Your other networks
The next thing to do is to go through your business networks, and this includes your business partners, your clients. I raised capital from a stockbroker who liked our investment process and decided to put some money into.
We sent out a newsletter to our clients as we also had a newsletter business at the time – we received quite a few inquiries about investing in our company, as the recipients have been following what we do.
Angel investors can often come from the least unexpected sources, so open up and reconnect through as many networks as you have.
Business executives and connections
This is a really good source for either investors or business partners. Build up a database of CEOs, COOs, CFOs and CTOs of companies that you believe could help.
Again, investments can come from the least expected sources. One of my clients runs a successful environmental venture capital fund, he raised his capital from Al Gore’s climate change private equity fund, which was not a surprise; but 2/3 of the capital was raised from 2 executives – one runs a telecommunications company, and one runs a property development company – neither company are involved in the cleantech industry.
So, how did he find these two investors; he searched through news on major donors of climate change functions – and found two companies who were not major donors but whose directors were extensively involved in sustainable energy and forestation projects on a personal level.
After 2 years of running the fund, he received a substantial injection of capital from another 2 executives in the mining industry using the same tactic.
These days, the power of social media has made things much easier. You can connect to other executives much easier and more quickly. But have you really looked at your connection deeply?
You will be surprised that you may have 10,000+ connections in your networks already before you even know it.
Social media networks is just like a giant Rolodex (business card holders for those outside North America); combine and share your networks with other co-founders and business partners, and you may find many angel investors are actually in your networks already.
Set up business executive directories and identify potential partners from established companies; also pull out lists of exhibitions or events and check out who the keynote speakers are for your industry, that can also quickly identify potential angel investors as well.
Hopefully you find these strategies useful to find your angel investors.
About ResearchWhitePaper Group, Inc.
ResearchWhitePaper Group, Inc. is a global research organization specializes in providing analysis and research into venture capital, private equity and emerging industries. It has produced various strategy reports, ebooks and databases, more information can be found on our site.
December 2, 2011
Hiring and Salaries Projected to Increase in 2012 by Major Research Firms.
The newly published Robert Half 2012 Technology Salary Guide provides projected average starting salary ranges for more than 70 IT positions and features the five mid- and senior-level tech professionals that are highest in demand. Mobile media is the main impetus for the highest growth technology, as smartphone use and tablet adoption continues to grow.
Average starting salaries for 2012 are predicted to go up over 2011 levels across the board. The Senior Management increases range from 3.0% to 3.9%, Applications Development functions between 2.0% for technical writers and 9.1% for mobile applications developers.
The tech industry paid an annual average wage of $86,800 in 2010, 93 percent more than the average private sector wage of $45,000 according to CyberStates 2011.
RHT forecasts that tech firms top hiring priorities (and starting salary ranges) in 2012 will be:
1. Systems Engineers ($70,250 – $102,000) and Networking Engineers ($75,000 – $107,750)
2. Developers ($70,000 – $111,000 for Software Developers)
3. Quality Assurance Professionals and Business Analysts ($71,750 – $103,250)
4. Data Warehousing ($88,000 135,750) and Business Intelligence Professionals ($87,750 – $123,500)
5. Security Professionals ($85,000 – $143,500)
Premiums are the norm in higher demand / higher cost of living areas, New York garners the highest premium at 41%, and San Francisco comes in second at a 35.5% upward variance.
Project Managers, Software Engineers, Java Developers, Business Analysts, Systems Administrators, Database Administrators, and Programmers are particularly in demand. Over the downturn engineering managers, computer hardware engineers, database administrators, and aerospace engineers, all managed to keep unemployment below five percent.
The TechServe Alliance monthly index shows that more than 7,000 IT jobs were added in October, an increase of 87,000 positions from October 2010, or 2.2 percent. That’s about 4.1 million IT jobs. “According to both data and the anecdotal reports of my member companies, demand for IT professionals in key skill sets remains strong,” said TechServe Alliance CEO Mark Roberts. According to the Brookings Institute, rising computer and electronic exports to Asia fueled that industry’s 7 percent job growth in the third quarter in Silicon Valley.
The positions the TechServe Alliance reports to be in the highest demand are:
1. Project Managers
2. Software Engineers
3. Java Developers
4. Business Analysts
5. Systems Administrators
6. Database Administrators
Reference / Further Reading recommended by Redfish Technology
Robert Half Technology 2012 Salary Guide
TechServe Alliance IT Employment Index
Cyberstates 2011 Key National Findings
August 4, 2011
How can the Clean Economy be fostered and what is the potential?
In the midst of the ideological divergence and posturing in Washington, it is refreshing to see some clear numbers that point to positive impactful investment and jobs in the green economy. The Metropolitan Policy Program at the Brookings Institute recently published their report “Sizing the Clean Economy” which ask and answers “The question before us: at a time of economic uncertainty and federal polarization, can America’s cities and metropolitan areas lead the nation to a clean economy—to create jobs in the near term and retool and restructure our economy for the long haul?”
This report discussed three important findings. First, the clean economy is a significant emerging market in the U.S. Second, metropolitan areas are the innovators of the clean economy. Third, to fulfill the potential of the emerging clean economy, the entrepreneurial energy and dynamism of these metropolitan engines must be liberated. (more…)
July 19, 2011
A How To in a Hot Job Market
“As the market heats up, candidates no longer go months without returned phone calls, but rather, quite the opposite,” reports Executive Recruiter Joanna Bradley. “With a positive shift in the economy comes a new set of challenges that hiring managers must be prepared to combat.” As a corporate matchmaker, it is Redfish’s mission to help companies find their ideal candidates. In response to changing market conditions, Redfish has been advising companies on evolving talent acquisition strategies. The dialogue continues in the first of a new series of webinars for hiring managers in the High Tech and Green Tech industries: “Closing Candidates: A How To in a Hot Job Market.” Closing candidates is an important skill in any environment, but it becomes especially important as the economy transitions. After dozens of phone interviews, multiple on-site meetings, team meetings and reference checks, the time and costs of your hiring process are already adding up. The competitive edge can be dulled if time is wasted on an unsuccessful hiring process. (more…)
July 8, 2011
June 3, 2011
Software Biggest Winner of Venture Capital
The software sector captured 50% of the VC investments in the first quarter according to the latest MoneyTree report, the quarterly study of venture capital investment activity in the US, followed by the biotech and green energy sectors.
Investments were up slightly in the first quarter, at $5.9 billion – the first time in four years since the dollar amount invested in Q1 were greater than Q4. That said the number of deals invested in was down to 736 nationwide – the lowest quarterly number since Q3 2009.
Software was the leading recipient of dollars with $1.1 billion invested in Q1 and the leader in number of deals funded at 187; these are both small decreases over last quarter. (more…)
May 30, 2011
Crowd Fund Investing,
Reversing the Decline in Capital Formation
Startups and Small Businesses are a critical part of our economy. They provide the majority of new jobs and salaries that are used to purchase goods (food, gas, rent), and stimulate the economy. However, Startups and Small Businesses need cash to fund their businesses and hire Americans. With the financial meltdown, the traditional means of business financing (bank loans, credit cards and venture capital) are no longer available to 98% of businesses because banks are holding on to their cash, credit card interest rates are exorbitant and private capital is only available to a select few. Without access to cash, thousands of businesses in 2011 will not start or grow and that means fewer jobs and a weaker US economy.
There is a solution. It is called crowd funding – regular Americans, choosing to invest small amounts of money in small businesses in their communities. However the SEC doesn’t allow the average American to invest at all because of regulations written almost 80 years ago.
Read on to learn about proposed commonsense modifications that the SEC should make to these regulations to provide a reasonable level of investor protection (anti-fraud & transparency) while easing the restrictions so that capital can flow to startups and small businesses from individuals who want to invest small amounts of money in them.
Reform to Allow Micro-Angel Investors
Entrepreneur Sherwood Neiss created this testimony for the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, United States House of Representatives.
Crowd Fund Investing (CFI) is not permitted by securities laws today but it stands to be a powerful method of financing, where groups of people will come together to invest in startups and provide valuable knowledge and experience to help an entrepreneur succeed. It will provide a way for unaccredited investors to pool their individual small contributions (likely between $50 – $500 each), and invest in companies and entrepreneurs they believe in. The funding rounds will occur on Internet platforms, which provide an added level of transparency and communication between the investors and the entrepreneurs. And “Micro-Angel Investors” will support people and businesses they believe in and in turn, help to grow the economy.
In order to make this a reality, we support creating common sense modifications to existing regulations to enable small businesses to raise capital. These reforms are modest, follow the spirit of the Securities Act of 1933 and the Exchange Act of 1934 and include:
1. Strong anti-fraud provisions
2. Limited risk and exposure for unaccredited investors
4. Standards-based reporting and a
5. Limit to the amount of seed capital a company can raise
StartUp Exemption Framework
• We propose the creation of a “funding window of up to $lM” for entrepreneurs and small businesses. (“Small Business” will be defined as one with average annual gross revenue of less than $5M during the last three years or since incorporation if the business has existed for less than three years. This definition will be consistent with definitions utilized by the Small Business Administration).
• Where any individual (including unaccredited investors) can choose to invest; however investments from unaccredited investors would be limited to $10,000. (The $10,000 limit is in line with other established financial disclosure limits like those on banking transfer reporting requirements. That said, based on what is happening on Crowd Funding websites today (to be further explained below), we anticipate that the majority of individuals making Crowd Fund Investments will be below $500 each).
• Investors will have to complete a questionnaire to determine their aptitude to participate in Crowd Fund Investing and answer a series of disclosures that demonstrate they have prior experience with making investments and/or are familiar with the principles of investing and associated risks. (These safeguards provide investor protections so that Crowd Fund Investing is on par with the level of risk for other investments of this class (e.g. publically traded penny stocks)).
- Eliminate the SOO-investor limit and the broker/dealer licensing requirements for Crowd Fund Investing via this window.
- Exempt these offerings from state law registration requirements based on the limited size of the amount that can be raised, but leave intact applicable state law notice filing requirements, similar to the way SEC Rule 506 currently works.
- Allow for general solicitation on registered platforms where individuals, companies and investors can meet virtually, ideas can be vetted by the community as sort of peer review, informed decision can be made on whether or not to invest their money and crowd fund investing can take place. These platforms would provide standards-based reporting to the SEC on the entrepreneurs and small businesses utilizing the platform.
- Standardized and automated forms and procedures would be used for these financing offerings to reduce time and expense for all parties while maintaining transparency.
A similar framework is already in place in the U.K., Holland, India and China. Now is the time to make this happen in the U.S. so our economy is not left behind. We believe this framework is one that will allow for transparency, accountability, limited risk and exposure and the flow of capital.
Related Sites / Articles
Sign the Petition to Support Crowd Funding on the Startup Exemption website
Improving the landscape for organic startups
View the May 10, 2011 hearing:
“The Future of Capital Formation, Panel 1″ (1:35:55)
“The Future of Capital Formation, Panel 2” (1:06:49)
May 11, 2011
Tech Visas Cooling Off
Mainly used in the software sectors, the H1 visas that used to require a lottery and be consumed within hours of release are no longer in great demand. A maximum of 65,000 H1 visas may be allotted annually. In 2008 the entire allotment of visas was exhausted in a matter of hours. In 2009, however there was a surplus, and demand continues to drop. In 2009, only 45,000 visas were issued, in 2010, 16,500, and in 2011 8,000. There are a variety of reasons for this plummeting demand: The lackluster recovery of US economy means less jobs and less promise for the future employment of a visa applicant. There is a thriving tech boom in many countries and many more opportunities back in China and India, where many visa applicants came from historically. Companies seeking employees needing H-1 visas are reticent to pay the higher visa fees, and are refocusing on recruiting qualified US workers as well as outsourcing R&D and software coding.
March 30, 2011
Information Technology Trends
Hot Companies, VC Bets
Yesteryear’s top bets
VentureBeat’s top 10 VCs in 2010 included hot companies Twitter, Zynga, and Groupon. This creamy top ten included only one non-web/digital-media company: Boston-Power, maker of EV and Grid lithium-ion batteries.
Software was the single biggest benefactor in 2010 according to The PwC MoneyTreeTM Report Q4 2010/Full-year 2010. Life Sciences (biotech and medical devices) took nearly 1/3rd of the VC market. CleanTech grew significantly taking with five of the top ten deals in 2010 attracting 17% of VC dollars; the same percentage was invested in internet-based companies.
IT Services, Tele¬communications, and Media & Entertainment all saw big dollar increases in 2010 as venture capital investment rises for the first time since 2007.
This year’s top 50
2011’s Wall Street Journal’s most likely to succeed US-based VC-funded companies shows a similar bent. The second annual “Top 50 Venture-Backed Companies” picks are based on the capital raised, the experience and track record of the talent and investors, and have a valuation of $1b or less. The winners are in Information Technology (23 out of 50), Business & Financial Services (12), Health Care (8), and Consumer Services (6). (more…)
December 13, 2010
Older Posts »
Green Job & Industry Trends
from the December 2010 Newsletter
2010 was a good year all in all.
VC investment in clean tech surged, the sector attracted 43% of new investment. The first 3 quarters of 2010 surpassed the whole of 2009. The big winners this year are transportation, biofuels, smart grid, energy efficiency, and solar.
Electric vehicles are now the fastest growing sector. Manufacturing, sales & service jobs will be created/transformed in the reborn auto industry. In addition to VC investment, private companies with and without loan commitments are pouring dollars into technology, facilities (more…)