SaveRegD: Show Your Support for Entrepreneurs

A few of my favorite entrepreneurial groups (NC Spark and have been buzzing in recent weeks about the current Chris Dodd financial reform bill. I submitted my support for one of the online petitions collecting signatures against this proposed legislation this evening. I am strongly against the suggested 120 day waiting period before a startup could receive funds raised from investors. I am also strongly against the increased bar on accredited investor status which is proposed to be raised from $1M in net worth to over $2M in net worth. Some estimates say that the accredited investor requirement change would remove nearly 70% of the options that startups have when raising money from wealthy individuals referred to as angels. Here are the details I included as I signed the petition this evening:

Adding anything that slows down the process of raising investment capital for startups is counter productive. These companies embody the American Dream and the current flexibility in the system attracts innovation to our country. A 120 day waiting period and a higher bar for accredited investment status will slow innovation and job creation in startups in this country. In this economy, as we are all starting to dig our way out, these new restrictions pose one more challenge to new ventures.

Below is the message that sent out to its nearly 15,000 members this evening. Please get involved, sign the petition, and spread the word about all of the damage that this proposed legislation would do if it becomes law. The brilliant entrepreneurs who create new ventures don’t need anything else making the challenge even more difficult and our community doesn’t need another roadblock standing in the way of new job creation.

Save Angel Investing
The US Senate Committee on Banking chaired by Senator Chris Dodd of Connecticut is proposing changes to angel investing buried within the “Financial Reform Legislation” on the floor of the Senate now. The reforms will effectively double the standard to be an “accredited investor” in the US, which most estimate will reduce the pool of accredited investors by over 70%. Additionally, the proposed legislation requires that financings, whether accredited or not, must be registered with the SEC, and the SEC has up to 120 days to respond. If the SEC does not respond, the financing goes to the applicable State organizations for review.

Reducing the number of accredited investors, slowing down the investment process significantly and adding considerable cost to small financings will decimate angel investing. For all US Members, unless you want to wait for months to get a wire after your next financing is closed, please take a moment to spread the word and call Senator Dodd, as well as your own State Senator.

– Amend Section 926 to exempt startups from SEC filing, state regulation, and 120-day review.
– Strike Section 412 to prevent 77% of current angel investors from losing their accreditation.

– DC: 202-224-2823
– CT: 800-334-5341

– #SaveRegD

Weekend in Chicago (Cubs, Roger Creager, Rooftops)

Erik, Arvind, and I (all UNC alums) spent last weekend in Chicago. This is my entrepreneur crew. I’ve worked with both of these guys in the past in entrepreneurial ventures including Preation, MainBrain, Factrivia, and iContact. We have a lot of fun and categorically bore everyone around us to tears while getting engulfed in business ideas and discussions of what might be. We get together a few times a year for one reason or another. Although we’ve all talked for years this was actually the first time Erik and Arvind met in person. We first all worked together on MainBrain back in 2002 while Arvind was still in Sydney, Australia.

Erik had the first rooftop gathering of the year which was the prompt for the get-together. His apartment building has an exceptional view of the Chicago skyline about 3 miles south. Apparently the weather had warmed up the previous week and short notice was provided via email. I left Raleigh/Durham at 5PM on Friday and it was 86 degrees, upon landing in Chicago it was 55 degrees and very windy. As an aside, I left Chicago to go on to Las Vegas for a conference and thus left Chicago on Sunday at 5PM at 52 degrees to then arrive in Las Vegas at 7PM at 88 degrees. It’s hard to pack for this.

On Saturday night we saw Roger Creager at Joe’s Bar in the downtown after spending the day being tourists. He put on a great show as usual. We took the train down to the river and did Wendella Boats’ architectural river tour which was my fourth time on that trip. It was fun as usual, great content, cold as all heck. We also had cocktails at the Signature Lounge at the top of the John Hancock Center when the tour finished. Of note, the new Trump building is going up nicely and it looks incredible. It’s right on the Chicago river and it’s very tall. I would love to have a condo in there near the top.

On Sunday the three of us joined the graduating MBA class of Notre Dame on one of the roof decks on Sheffield street overlooking Wrigley Field. We had a great time. Chicago is a great city.