Move over, Mosaic and SunFunder. There’s a new solar crowdfunding website in town—Crowdsun.com.
The third online investment platform for financing solar projects bills itself as “Your solution to safe, green funding.” CrowdSun has already funded over $2 million across 11 campaigns, two of which have hit the 100% mark so far. The company’s first project reportedly raised $300,000 in three days. From the company President & CEO, Mark Yegge:
“Most investors in solar projects are the big-money institutions, and they are privy to stable solar investments that can earn anywhere from 4% to 20% annually—until now. Smaller investors can now take advantage of the shift to green solar energy through our crowdfunding site.”
According to PV Tech, like Mosaic (which had received over $5.6 million from more than 2,500 investors by November 2013), Crowdsun.com claims to offer careful project review and interest on investments at a higher rate than currently offered by banks. (Projected annual rates of return for solar crowdfund investors typically run between about 4.5% and 10%.)
Both companies have so far limited their business to solar investment in US projects. Sunfunder, which is not approved by the US Securities and Exchange Commission, funds solar projects outside the US. Sunfunder can accept investments all over the world, but cannot return interest.
Yegge has been involved in groundbreaking businesses since cofounding and nurturing NexTrade Holdings. NexTrade operates one of nine SEC-approved Electronic Communications Networks on Wall Street and has been one of the top 50 fastest growing companies in the US. The CEO’s involvement in solar started in 2008 with the founding of NextWave Solar, Inc., a Florida-based solar firm specializing in solar electric systems design and installation. Yegge has twice been nominated for Ernst & Young’s Entrepreneur Of The Year, the world’s most prestigious business award for entrepreneurs.
Encounter Yegge at a TEDx Talk posted several years ago on YouTube (above) about executing ideas, the false paradigm that limits most people’s success, and how to overcome it. Also, for perspective on the new startup investment tool—which has more than tripled in the last three years—see Crowdsun.com’s fascinating recent blog (March 24, 2014) on grassroots funding called “Before You Launch Your Crowdfunding Campaign, Read This.”