As you know, we have been in the “Testing the Waters” phase of an equity crowdfunding initiative since June 19. It was made possible by the amendments to Regulation A (known as Regulation A+) mandated by the Jumpstart Our Business Startup (JOBS) Act of 2012. Paul talked about crowdfunding and its importance to startups in his recent interview with Motley Fool.
Since we launched this effort on equity crowdfunding platform StartEngine.com, more than 8,600 people raised their hands and said, “I’m interested.” (metaphorically speaking, of course!) We have received non-binding expressions of interest of nearly $32 million. And that leads us to last week’s big news.
On Friday, Aug. 28, we filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) seeking authorization to make a formal stock offer of $25 million. We have been told by several knowledgeable sources that our application can take anywhere from 30 to 75 days to review. We’ll likely have to make some changes to our offering based on feedback from the SEC. This could add another two weeks or so to the process, but in all likelihood, we’ll know sometime this fall whether we are authorized to make a formal stock offering.
If and when we are authorized by the SEC to make a formal offer, our next big challenge very well could be managing the demand. As stated, we’re only trying to raise $25 million at this time through this initiative. However, we have non-binding expressed interest of nearly $32 million.
We are working on a process that will allow those who have made non-binding expressions of interest a window of opportunity to purchase shares before the rest of the general public. In all likelihood, only those who have made a non-binding expression of interest during this “Testing the Waters” phase will be able to purchase Elio stock for a specified number of days before we announce to the general public that authorization from the SEC has been received. The objective being to do what we can to ensure that the folks who made reservations actually have the opportunity to formally secure shares. We are working out details of this process and will keep you updated as it is developed.
The whole process keeps with our DNA of being an innovative company. We’re already one of the largest crowdfunded projects in history. The funds raised through our vehicle reservations, combined with a crowdfunding initiative aimed at accredited investors in March, makes Elio Motors the second largest crowdfunded project in the world! It’s an impressive accomplishment.
It also fits with the incredible grass roots support that people like you have shown for Elio Motors. We have been blessed with an amazing group of fans and friends. It’s a long and difficult trek to launch a startup. But, the support we’ve received from reservation holders, fans and potential investors keeps us moving forward, and helps keep our enthusiasm growing.
Last week’s SEC filing was a big step in the right direction. It helps answer some of our funding questions and puts us in a better position to succeed. We look forward to hearing back from the SEC in the near future as we continue our relentless push forward. As always, we’ll keep you posted as we learn more.