Benzinga will be holding its annual Benzinga Global Fintech Awards, a day of dealmaking, networking, and recognition in the financial technology space, on Nov. 10, 2020.
In recognition of those disruptive innovators creating positive and diverse change within the financial services space, Benzinga chatted with Pialy Aditya, Chief Strategy Officer at Republic.
After Regulation CF, or Title III of the JOBS Act was enacted by the Securities and Exchange Commission in May 2016, entrepreneurs were allowed to capture funding from non-accredited, public investors for the very first time.
The private market markets, prior to this, were only open to the wealthiest 2%.
Founded in 2016, Republic is a fintech built on this recent regulatory evolution, democratizing and digitizing startup investing.
The company is a pioneer in the crowdfunding industry and has helped over 750,000 members of the general public, family offices, and institutions invest in private companies such as Robinhood, SpaceX and EquipmentShare, among others, alongside top venture capital firms, such as Andreessen Horowitz or Merry Meeker’s BOND.
In the simplest way possible: Republic is a clean, easy-to-understand robust system for private investing.
“What started out as an equity crowdfunding platform for retail investors, seeded by AngelList, has since grown into this robust system for private investing in pre-seed to pre-IPO companies,” Aditya said. “Anyone can invest with as little as $10.”
Core Product Portfolio
“We’ve digitized the entire fundraising process.”
Republic comes as a holistic solution for investing in highly vetted companies. Thus far, the company has engaged mostly in regulation crowdfunding deals with plans to hone in on Regulation A deals, helping mature, private companies raise up to $5 million per year.
“Right now, about 1% of those who apply to Republic make it onto our platform,” Aditya noted. “The average raise of our campaign, last year, has been $550,000, and 95% of the startups reach their fundraising goal.
In light of its substantial growth, Republic expanded into real estate, gaming, cryptocurrency, venture capital, as well as digital assets.
“We recently acquired Compound and launched Republic Real Estate; we also acquired Fig, a revolutionary platform that allows investors to participate in the upside of video games and video game consoles; and we just broke ground on our most ambitious project yet, the Republic Note, a profit-sharing token.”
The COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic accelerated the drive for funding. As a result, Republic targeted inclusivity and further built out its content library, adding Republic Academy, a virtual event for founders, educational webinars, as well as tools to help investors get engaged with the investing process.
“We helped create Meet the Drapers, a 'Shark Tank'-like show that allows the audience to invest in the deals being pitched,” Aditya said.
“That show will now enter its fourth season and what’s cool is while you’re watching Meet the Drapers, there is a live campaign on Republic so anyone watching in 100-plus countries could actually, with just their credit card, invest in one of the startups on the Republic platform.”
Additionally, as part of an effort to narrow the gap in funding across diverse, underrepresented backgrounds, Republic recently helped two startups, Fleeting and Blue, raise $1 million, making them the first companies led by a black male and a Latinx founder to hit this milestone on a regulated digital funding platform.
“We acquired SheWorx last year, an organization and community that helps empower female and minority entrepreneurs. We’ve also partnered with Republic investor Chamillionaire, a platinum Grammy Award-winning American rapper. We’ve worked with him on a $100,000 pitch competition for underrepresented founders that led to over $1.2 million in investments from the Republic Network.”
“All entrepreneurs should have access to funding for their business, and investors should be able to fund private startups they believe in, no matter where they live.”
Going forward, Republic aims to provide global and equal access to alternative assets and unique, high-growth opportunities.
“We’re building a new inclusive system that lets everyone participate. We envision this world where anyone could be an early-stage investor and all founders have an equal opportunity to raise money on their merits.”
To learn more about Republic's community for investing in promising private opportunities, click here.