Startup Exemption Founder to Speak at North American TeleForum on Crowdfunding

The Future of Startup Financing: A North American TeleForum on $$$ Crowd funding

Register today (Tuesday, March 6th, beginning at 11 am EST)

Register On-Line to Reserve your spot on the Call

Join a group of your colleagues in Canada and the U.S. on Tuesday, March 6th beginning at 11:00 am EST for an important Teleforum Conference Call on the future of seed and growth financing for start-ups and entrepreneurs.

The briefing team will be lead by the founder of the Crowd funding movement, Sherwood Neiss, Chief Advocate for The Startup Exemption. Mr. Neiss will describe the advances in technology, the Internet and Social Media to allow an entrepreneur to raise a limited amount of capital from his friends, family & community under a framework that provides for investor protection.

Also attending the call to provide background and guidance will be members of the CATA Crowd funding Action Committee (see below), including, Tom Houston, Partner, FMC Law, Andrea Johnson, Partner, FMC Law, Peter Andrews, Regional Director, Corum Group, Steven Hurwitz, Partner, Choate, Hall & Stewart LLP, John Reid, CATA, CEO, Gary Stairs, CEO, Chair and CEO of Stellar RHL., Michael Turner, VP, Wesley Clover, Jordan Smith, B.Sc., Senior Manager, Deloitte and Paul Dombowsky, CEO, Ideavibes.

Crowd funding is local vesting and community vetting where only the winning ideas receive not only funding but shared knowledge, experience and marketing power. Crowd funding makes it easier for business to obtain investment by selling stock to small investors. A new Bill is currently in the U.S. Senate to exempt crowd funding from State regulation of securities offerings.

CATA has launched an advocacy Campaign to encourage Canadian legislators to adopt approaches similar to the U.S. approach.

“We don’t want to have this launched in the U.S. and then have to play catch up,” said CATA president John Reid.

Gary Stairs, President of Fredericton-based Stellar-RHL and Chair of i-ATLANTIC, noted, “New Brunswick and its sister provinces have developed models of collaboration between experienced investors, young entrepreneurs, universities, and government. Today’s new capital formation pathways that allow businesses to be crowd funded can really catch fire in this ecosystem. Regrettably we are blocked by regulations.”

Andrea Johnson, Partner, FMC law and securities expert said, “I believe the Canadian government is very behind in this and should be pushed harder because access to capital is a big issue. Making it easier for start-ups to get that money is important.”

CATA is lobbying provincial securities regulators to make similar changes here. While the new American legislation would be overseen by a single national watchdog, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, Canada still has no national regulator, after a Supreme Court decision recently declared such a body unconstitutional.

The U.S. Perspective:

Mr. Neiss, who has raised more than $100-million in funding capital, notes that “I’ve testified in front of Congress twice now and our framework is the framework for all the Bills before Congress. We are on the ground lobbying in Washington, DC. We also have the support of President Obama.”

“I believe the Canadian government is very behind in this and should be pushed harder because access to capital is a big issue. Making it easier for start-ups to get that money is important,” said Johnson.

The TeleForum will be MC’d by Bill Hutchison, Chair of i-CANADA, and Barry Gander, Co-Founder of i-CANADA, a movement to create an Intelligent Nation through the adoption at the community level of ultra-high-speed networking. “This new avenue for capital, plus our growth ecosystem, could make investments in start-up ventures gain speed,” said Mr. Hutchison. “Thousands of new jobs will be created in the process.”

CATA North American Teleforum l on the Future of Start-up Financing
Featuring: Sherwood Neiss, Chief Advocate for The Start-Up Exemption & Industry Experts
Tuesday, March 6th
11 am – 12:15 pm EST
Conference Call format with Q & A

Who Should Participate

– Entrepreneurs seeking start-up and growth funding
– Financial advisors dealing with SMEs
– Government officials responsible for financing
– International trade officers and those concerned with export policy

++ Action Items: How do I sign up?

Sign up online at:

Please note that spots on this call are limited.

Your local call in number and access code will be sent to you via email. Callers have local dial in numbers in all major Canadian and U.S. cities and free access worldwide using Skype.

Note that the Call-in Registration fee is $45 for for Non Members; CATA members (no charge) have preference as we limit caller numbers to encourage active discussion. Fees are reinvested in our Competitive Innovation Nation research programs. Questions:


A Special Background Note on Sherwood Neiss

Sherwood Neiss started his post-MBA career on Wall Street and moved to Silicon Valley where by his 29th birthday reached the personal and financial goals he set for his 30th year. He used his entrepreneurial drive to help turn a family adversity into a multi-million dollar company that today is helping millions of sick children, animals and adults get better by being more compliant with their medicines. Sherwood co-founded FLAVORx ( ) the company makes medicine flavourful. His structured approach helped not only build a business model that threw off millions of dollars in cash but also helped grow the business from one pharmacy to over 80% of the pharmacies in the United States. He raised millions of dollars in capital and saw the culmination of his endeavors with the sale of the company in 2007. He speaks at universities and seminars around the world about what it takes to be an entrepreneur, how to fund your idea and build a winning company. He testified at three Congressional hearings; one on the impediments to capital formation under Sarbanes-Oxley and two regarding access to capital for entrepreneurs and Crowd fund Investing. His SOX testimony was one of the reasons the Small Business Exemption to section 404(b) audit requirements was passed in July 2010. Most recently Sherwood won the November 2010 & May 2011 Startup Weekend Challenges in Miami to use smart phones for instant polling & for equity based crowd funding platform. Currently he advocating for the SEC to update the securities laws to make it legal for groups of people to pool small dollar amounts of money together to invest in startups aka “Crowd fund Investing.”


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