Poland: Will crowdfunding conquers the polish real estate market?

What is Equity crowdfunding? It is the online offering of private company securities to a group of people for investment and therefore it is a part of the capital markets. Because equity crowdfunding involves investment into a commercial enterprise, it is often subject to securities and financial regulation. Equity crowdfunding is also referred to as crowd-investing, investment crowdfunding, or crowd equity.

The mechanism that enables broad groups of investors to fund startup companies and small businesses in return for equity. Investors give money to a business and receive ownership of a small piece of that business. If the business succeeds, then its value goes up, as well as the value of a share in that business—the converse is also true. Coverage of equity crowdfunding indicates that its potential is greatest with startup businesses that are seeking smaller investments to achieve establishment, while follow-on funding (required for subsequent growth) may come from other sources. Recently, this type of campaigns is also possible in the real estate industry – Real estate Crowdfunding is a method of investing by a large group of individual investors, usually via the Internet, in selected on the real estate platform in exchange for shares in a company dedicated to a given project and although the investment in real estate is usually associated with large capital, it is not always necessary to finance it. Crowdfunding, or financing various types of projects through one-off payments by people interested in a given initiative, is becoming more and more popular. Even tens of thousands of zlotys are enough to become a shareholder and benefit from real estate investments.

This form of crowdfunding is gaining worldwide popularity. In Poland investment financing by a group of people buying up the so-called “brick” is still relatively unknown, but the situation is slowly changing. A minimum of 10,000 PLN is enough to invest, although the amounts are usually slightly higher. There are 30-40 investors per one tenement house, and the profit is proportional to the contribution. The rate of return can reach up to 20 percent. In Poland, the problem is still low awareness of property crowdfunding and a complicated formal process.

In the West, eg in the US, there are several dozen platforms that connect investors. In Poland, real estate crowdfunding is still relatively unpopular, and there are few companies involved in the group investing in real estate for rent. One of the groups that specialize in investing in real estate, since 2014 has collected about PLN 30 million of capital as part of its projects. This shows that property crowdfunding in Poland is slowly growing in strength.

The planners of ShareVestors.com service were guided by the idea of creating a tool from which everyone will be able to employ their capital. If ShareVestors.com is to be available to everyone, a minimum investment level of 1000 PLN has been set. Projects are calculated so that anyone who has even a thousand zlotys of free capital can invest in profitable projects.

The Mzuri group operates on the real estate market. The group consists of Mzuri – it is the first and currently the largest Polish company that manages flats for rent. It serves over 2,000 flats in over twenty cities throughout Poland. Mzuri Investments – helps in finding market opportunities and buying and renovating apartments. Over the past few years, she has helped in the purchase of approx. 500 apartments and several tenements. Mzuri CFI – crowdfunding special purpose companies implementing investment projects.

Social Estate is the new platform for real state crowdfunding. The project is based on the possibility of earning on real estate investments carried out by Petram House. Until now, the company has been building facilities for Biedronka, Rossmann, and Hebe. After starting the platform, the investment direction will not change.

ARTISTIC Project: Your Idea for the Valorization of Intangible Cultural Heritage

Central Europe is an area rich of Intangible Cultural Heritage, that is sometimes not adequately valued and financed. This heritage includes knowledge, traditions, skills and representations, that are typical for a certain region. As those values are important for a regions identity, they usually get passed on to the next generation. Still, sometimes they get lost or stay in secrecy.

Thanks to ARTISTIC project, nearly 80 of the most promising ICHs oriented business ideas will be identified, selected and enhanced to strengthen their identity. They will be supported in their development and led to a final selection of 40 ICH business ideas, specifically taken to crowdfunding campaigns:

We would like to invite you to be part of the project by sharing your idea on one of the following topics:

  • Traditional craftsmanship
  • Oral traditions
  • Performing arts
  • Social practices
  • Knowledge and practices concerning nature

What we offer

In favour of the selected business ideas, training and personalized coaching program will be offered (meetings, individual assistance, small working groups) aimed at drafting/reviewing a Business Plan (AT3.3) focused on valorising both the ICH value of the business idea and the crowdfunding opportunity.

Who can participate

Entrepreneurs or would-be entrepreneurs, that have a business idea linked to ICH assets, living in the Project Area or wanting to get involved/establish in the Project Area.

Evaluation criteria

The Open Call will be launched by each Partner in January, and closed by February 28th. The ICH project ideas will be selected by a local jury of experts whose judgement is unquestionable, within March 14th 2019. The selection will be based on the following criteria.

  • correspondence of the Business idea within UNESCO definition of ICH
  • enhancement and involvement of local resources (enhancement of customs, habtis, traditions and involvement of local territory stakeholders)
  • innovative elements: the idea offers new opportunities or new products/services? Does it facilitate access to new products or services? Does it offer greater effiency and a better impact? Is it innovative from a technological point of view? How much does it engage young generations and use innovative tools such as mktg 2.0? Is it innovative from a social point of view? Does it use innovative distribution channels?
  • proejtk team: availability, within the team, of some or all the skills necessary to realize the idea, credibility and reliability of the project team considering the specific business idea, motivation.
  • network of partners available to sustain the implementation of the project, this network is also of great importance to support the potential crowdfunding campaign
  • sutainability of the idea: ability of the project to attract resources and guarantee its continuity over time
  • marketability of the idea: attractiveness of the idea on the target market.

Let’s valorize and eventually finance your ICH projects and ideas together with the ARTISTIC team! 

Send your application form to Conny.weber(at)innovation.at!

Learn more about the ARTISTIC project. 

Poland: Electric scooter-sharing systems.

Scooter-sharing is the fastest growing electric system in Europe.

The last two years have been the dynamic development of shared means of transport – carsharing and scooter sharing – both in our country and in the world. This positive phenomenon contributes to reducing the number of vehicles in cities, reducing traffic jams, pollution and increasing the available public space in urban areas.

The Blinkee.city electric scooters are the example. The Polish premiere was in March 2017, when 5 two-wheelers left Warsaw. It soon turned out that the demand for the service is much greater. Its popularity among users surprised everyone – the brand finished the season with a fleet of 180 machines. Blinkee.city scooters are the company’s original project. Owners themselves designed their scooters, thanks to which they are independent of other technology suppliers. This allows continuous and free improvement of the fleet. Scooters can be rented straight from the street, and everything is done using a mobile application. You only pay for the time of use.

With over 900 vehicles in Poland, owners of blinkee.city recently planned to run their service in Sweden. Sweden is a country where there is a huge demand for ecological transport and city sharing solutions. The company already tested its fleet in Stockholm, and on October 25, FundedByMe started fundraising for operations in Scandinavia in exchange for shares. The goal of the collection was 200 thousand euro on Blinkee Nordic AB and in the end, has reached the maximum funding goal which is 209,300€ with help of 129 investors (5.62% of company’s shares). The Swedish company is already registered, an experienced Scandinavian partner is chosen, the application is translated into Swedish, and the first scooters are already running. The plan is 100 scooters for Swedes as early as March 2019. In return, the owners offer devotion to investors from 5.4 percent shares in a Swedish company. Shareholder crowdfunding relies on the financial support of the company in exchange for acquiring a certain pool of shares. This solution is ideal for people who want to invest in a business, but do not want to deal with the huge amount of formalities that are associated with it. The advantage is mutual – the brand receives the funds needed for development, and the investor receives shares in the company.Specification of the Blinkee electric scooter:

  • Range up to 80 km
  • Keyless START with your mobile app
  • Big trunk, with two helmets inside
  • Suitable for two people
  • 100% powered by electricity
  • Own electronics designed and manufactured

Another example is SCROOT  which in April 2017 launched the Urban Scooter System for the residents of Warsaw. The company intends to raise funds using the opportunities provided by equity crowdfunding and the Beesfund.com (https://scroot.beesfund.com) investor community. SCROOT S.A. counts on the interest of both large investors and smaller ones because the entry threshold is one share, the value of which is PLN 60. The funds obtained from the sale of shares will be allocated for the diversification and enlargement of the scooter fleet (also new electric vehicles), development of the IT system and mobile applications, conducting marketing activities and enlarging the team. All these activities are to provide Scroot with scaling the service, which in the long term will allow the company to take a strong position in the shared mobility industry. Shares are available, the collection lasts until 15.01.

Lumapod – The World’s Fastest Tripod (Interview)

In fall 2018, a young team from Austria started a Kickstarter-campaign called Lumapod – The World’s Fastest Tripod, aiming to finance the first series of their innovative travel-tripod. A few weeks later, 3,785 backers pledged €501,691 to help bring this project to life. Now the team is further pre-selling the Lumapod on Indiegogo, while finalizing the product-development, securing production and looking for new team-members. In an interview, Martin Grabner – founder and inventor of the Lumapod – told us some background stories, how they prepared for their Crowdfunding-campaign and what the are planning for the future.

Wolfgang: Hi Martin, you are the founder of Lumapod, an innovative tripod. Please tell us more about the product and the idea behind it.

Martin: I love traveling. And I always packed my tripod. But it is heavy, bulky and takes forever to set up. After a trip through Iceland, we decided to create a new kind of travel tripod, which is compact and fast to set up. We developed two different models and optimized it for different demands. So you can use Lumapod with your smartphone, GoPro, mirrorless or DSLR Camera. A quick and simple setup will empower you to take full advantage of every photo opportunity … 4 seconds and you’re ready to go.

Wolfgang: How long did you work on the prototype and when did you decide to enter the market?

Martin: I’ve been working on the project for about 2,5 years. Very soon it was clear that I want finance our product by using Crowdfunding. A lot of time went into development and prototyping. But we also had to invest a lot of time into topics like grant-applications and registering a patent and a trademark etc. As well as into the preparation of the Crowdfunding campaign itself. We defined the launch date a few months in advance and from there on we focussed everything towards this day.

Wolfgang: Why Crowdfunding?

Martin: Our product is perfect for Crowdfunding. On Kickstarter we were reaching exactly our target group for photography, design, tech and gadget. On the one hand, we did the campaign because of the financing. But Crowdfunding is much more than that. The campaign was also a market test. You can find out what the community thinks about your product and therefore you get a lot of feedback you can take into account before entering the market. If the campaign is successful (and it was) and the press covers you, you also get international marketing and can already build up a brand.

The docufilm that tells how to detox from technology and the web

Produzionidalbasso.com, the first Italian crowdfunding platform, recently hosted a reward-based campaign called “(a)social” on a highly topical issue: how to detoxify from technological tools and from being connected online.

Technology approaches, but at the same time takes away people who use it. Internet, social networks and smartphones have totally changed the way people live and habits. Almost all of us use Google, Facebook, Tripadvisor, Youtube, etc., as well as e-mail, digital maps, apps and the endless opportunities offered by web technology. All these tools have undoubtedly improved our quality of life by simplifying numerous operations. At the same time, more and more frequently, the same technology creates enormous dependencies which, by now, are under the eyes of all and increase with the passing of the years.

The campaign entitled “10 days without a smartphone” has raised over 10 thousand euros from 29 supporters. 50% of the campaign was covered by Infinity Mediaset, an Italian on demand online video streaming platform.

The docufilm develops on two tracks in parallel: in one a journalist/social media manager, a singer, a photographer and an influencer accustomed to hyper-connectivity are deprived of their smartphone and any internet connection. A jump into the past. For 10 days in the high mountains.

The other track of the docufilm has as protagonists totally different people (by age, profession, habits) that tell of their relationship with the internet and with the smartphone: a person of 70 years chooses a hotel compared to a 16-year-old who faces his first vacation alone. It explains how social and mobile a different impact has depending on the work, the registry and the attitude of each of us.

Rentopolis: the overfunded Italian property management company

Rentopolis is an Italian property management company: it manages prestigious properties and structures for short term tourist and business rentals throughout Italy and abroad. The company’s strong technological footprint allows it to offer guests a complete and satisfying experience and to provide comprehensive support to homeowners and operators in all activities related to the management of real estate for short term rentals.

Its recent campaign was aired on the Italian crowdfunding platform Mamacrowd and collected about 335k EUR. Today, Rentopolis manages a portfolio of more than 350 prestigious housing solutions in the most renowned tourist destinations in Italy and abroad. In 2018, more than 1M EUR were transferred to the platform.

Rentopolis manages prestigious homes and structures for short term rentals, dealing with:

  • renovation and maintenance of buildings, with the introduction of home automation solutions and “smart home” for automation and remote control of consumption, temperatures, opening and closing doors, lighting, security;
  • guest reception, multilingual concierge 24/7;
  • check-in/check-out management, cleaning and linen change.

Moreover, it offers a wide range of additional services that can be booked directly from the apartments (e.g., transfers, guided tours, etc).

Rentopolis also works in partnership with property managers: the innovative software automatically manages a range of operational activities such as marketing, dynamic pricing, booking and contract management, invoicing and interaction with suppliers. Having delegated operational activities to Rentopolis, property managers free up time for their business.

Poland: Electric scooter-sharing systems.

Scooter-sharing is the fastest growing electric system in Europe.

The last two years have been the dynamic development of shared means of transport – carsharing and scooter sharing – both in our country and in the world. This positive phenomenon contributes to reducing the number of vehicles in cities, reducing traffic jams, pollution and increasing the available public space in urban areas.

The Blinkee.city electric scooters are the example. The Polish premiere was in March 2017, when 5 two-wheelers left Warsaw. It soon turned out that the demand for the service is much greater. Its popularity among users surprised everyone – the brand finished the season with a fleet of 180 machines. Blinkee.city scooters are the company’s original project. Owners themselves designed their scooters, thanks to which they are independent of other technology suppliers. This allows continuous and free improvement of the fleet. Scooters can be rented straight from the street, and everything is done using a mobile application. You only pay for the time of use.

With over 900 vehicles in Poland, owners of blinkee.city recently planned to run their service in Sweden. Sweden is a country where there is a huge demand for ecological transport and city sharing solutions. The company already tested its fleet in Stockholm, and on October 25, FundedByMe started fundraising for operations in Scandinavia in exchange for shares. The goal of the collection was 200 thousand euro on Blinkee Nordic AB and in the end, has reached the maximum funding goal which is 209,300€ with help of 129 investors (5.62% of company’s shares). The Swedish company is already registered, an experienced Scandinavian partner is chosen, the application is translated into Swedish, and the first scooters are already running. The plan is 100 scooters for Swedes as early as March 2019. In return, the owners offer devotion to investors from 5.4 percent shares in a Swedish company. Shareholder crowdfunding relies on the financial support of the company in exchange for acquiring a certain pool of shares. This solution is ideal for people who want to invest in a business, but do not want to deal with the huge amount of formalities that are associated with it. The advantage is mutual – the brand receives the funds needed for development, and the investor receives shares in the company.

Specification of the Blinkee electric scooter:
  • Range up to 80 km
  • Keyless START with your mobile app
  • Big trunk, with two helmets inside
  • Suitable for two people
  • 100% powered by electricity
  • Own electronics designed and manufactured

 

Another example is SCROOT  which in April 2017 launched the Urban Scooter System for the residents of Warsaw. The company intends to raise funds using the opportunities provided by equity crowdfunding and the Beesfund.com (https://scroot.beesfund.com) investor community. SCROOT S.A. counts on the interest of both large investors and smaller ones because the entry threshold is one share, the value of which is PLN 60. The funds obtained from the sale of shares will be allocated for the diversification and enlargement of the scooter fleet (also new electric vehicles), development of the IT system and mobile applications, conducting marketing activities and enlarging the team. All these activities are to provide Scroot with scaling the service, which in the long term will allow the company to take a strong position in the shared mobility industry. Shares are available, the collection lasts until 15.01.

 

The journey is tailor-made with the Italian startup Onivà

The journey is an experience to be lived on measure. Francesca D’Urbano, entrepreneur born in 1983, decided to found the Italian startup “Onivà – Viaggi Fatti a Mano”.

Onivà goal is to offer travellers tailored routes and options, tailored to the needs, expectations and budget of users. The service creates the right proposal starting from the information that customers grant through a questionnaire and that help Onivà understand what would make them happy on the road.

The needs of those who move alone, in pairs or with a child are certainly not similar; even the same destination can offer totally different ideas depending on who visits, especially in terms of experience. The startup wants to take away those who want to escape but also wants to advance towards new goals.

It has also shown the successful participation in Nastro Azzurro Crowd, the initiative to enhance the innovative Italian talent promoted by the premium brand Nastro Azzurro in collaboration with the crowdfunding platform Eppela. The campaign (https://www.eppela.com/it/projects/20226-onivan – Italian language) pledged more than 10,000 EUR involving 76 supporters.

Surprise travels are one of the strengths for the startup created by D’Urbano: with the Onivà Mistery Tour option you can already start without knowing the destination in advance and give a friend or a partner an experience based on pure surprise, to be unveiled only at the airport. But why, in the age where, thanks to the network, is it possible to choose how, when and where to go, the journey is still a dimension where to turn to a third service?

As Francesca D’Urbano explains to Wired, “Often, apart from Internet competence, people lack time. In general, it is returning to establish an idea of ​​travel as a 360-degree experience, it is not just about booking a flight or a hotel. We like to tailor it precisely for this reason, putting in us the passions, the dreams. People rely on us for the experience we have, but also to be pampered, to drive. This makes the difference; it’s all a mix of factors but the idea that travel is not just book ticket and flight is coming back and we ride this desire“.

Poland: Izikoc® – multifunctional blanket.

Izikoc® is a smart & multifunctional blanket you can transform into a sleeping bag or wear it like kimono.

Izabela Szczepańska created an amazing brand based on her sensitivity and experience. She is a UX designer, in addition to designing websites, she’s also designer of original clothes and accessories* according to the idea of less is better – by buying these clothes you can be sure that buying one thing you have a lot of them. In an ingenious way, you can change your bag into a backpack, a dress into a bag or a blanket into a coat!

All items are unique and protected by a patent, which confirms their uniqueness.

Also, her designs are adapted for blind people who can not see the colors but love the touch, which is why she chooses the materials very carefully and add descriptions written in Braille.

And finally, she offers 20% discounts, for those who are ready to give someone life… by registering as a bone marrow donor :) It’s so little but changes a lot. As a designer, she believes in karma and that’s why she decided that in her store on IZIARTWEAR, the promotion will be available for everyone who likes to spread good. She works with the DKMS foundation and tries to make people register as bone marrow donors because “you are worth as much as you can give to the world”.

Her Ongoing campaign on the Polish crowdfunding platform wspieram.to aims at raising only 2000PLN (500€) so she can present her collection to the world and, above all, make the products herself on a new sewing machine.

*You can see (and buy) more beautiful things such as bags and jewelry, all handmade by this talented designer on Etsy

Crowd Dialog Workshop 2018: High-Level Networking in Austria

One day before the mainevent “Crowd Dialog Europe 2018” took place, the Country Patrons of all 28 EU States got together at the European Commission Workshop in Vienna to talk about the core topics “Alternative Finance and FinTech: Best Practices and Trends in the EU“. Each Country Patron is the representative of one EU State, and could therefore give all workshop participants an exclusive insight in what trends are gaining ground in their country.

Another great benefit of the workshop: By bringing together people from different countries and different businesses, a very interesting workshop environment could be created in the Austrian Parliament. Important future topics could be dicussed by different stakeholders, that were able to enrich the discussion with their individual point of view. They also had the chance to network, and work on common ideas.

Take a look at the highlights of the event in the video below!