Nish Acharya, Director of the US Department of Commerce’s Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, and Senior Advisor to the Secretary of Commerce, will speak about crowdfunding, and its role in boosting America’s innovation and entrepreneurship. Crowdfunding was an integral part of the recent passage of the America JOBS Act and analysts expect that crowd funding website will become a major source of investment capital for emerging startups. Mr. Acharya will talk about the vision of the Obama Administration for crowd funding, and also the various steps to support the growth of crowd funding since the passage of the JOBS Act. Mr. Acharya previously served as Executive Director of the Deshpande Foundation, where he had direct experience with crowd funding through grants that the Foundation made to Kiva and Range De, an Indian microfinance site. Mr. Acharya will share his experiences about the impact of crowd funding, the challenges that he personally saw for this effort, and the hope for crowd funding to spur innovation and entrepreneurship.
In April 2012, President Obama signed H.R. 3606 or the JOBS Act, and for entrepreneurs the most relevant piece in this legislation is on crowdfunding. The JOBS Act contains the original language from the House of Representatives passed The Entrepreneur Access to Capital Act amending the Securities Act of 1933. The bill would allow a new registration exemption for companies raising crowdfunded financing. Companies may raise up to $1 million within a 12-month period without registering the securities with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
The Crowdfunding Webinar Mini-Series will feature a balanced array of presenters from government agencies, universities, VC and Angel groups to present the advantages and issues for individual investors, policymakers, Congress and the Administration better understand the implications of crowdfunding.
ABOUT THE PRESENTER:
Nishith Acharya is the Director of the Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship and Senior Advisor to the Secretary of Commerce. Prior to joining Commerce, Nishith served as Executive Director of the Deshpande Foundation, a prominent American philanthropy focused on innovation, entrepreneurship and scalability around the world. Nishith led the Foundation's strategic planning, grant making, evaluation and advocacy efforts. Under his leadership, the Foundation's "Sandboxes" – centers of innovation and entrepreneurship have become a leading international model for regional economic development. During his tenure, the Foundation created a Sandbox in India, with over 100 partner organizations and nearly 10,000 individual participants. Nishith has also led the Foundation's venture philanthropy, working to help scale Indian NGO's like Akshaya Patra and Agastya throughout India. It also created Sandboxes to boost the economies of the Merrimack Valley cities of Lowell, MA and Lawrence, MA and New Brunswick, Canada. The Foundation also supports the MIT Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation, and provided seed capital to major initiatives like the Public Health Foundation of India, the United Way India and the US Indo-Engineering Collaborative. Nishith serves as a Member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Bretton Woods Committee, The Indus Entrepreneurs, and the Clinton Global Initiative. He also served as a Board member of Akshaya Patra USA and the United Way Worldwide Leadership Committee. He has also been a judge for major government programs such as the Department of Energy Innovation Ecosystems Grant and the Malcolm Baldridge Award. Nishith has been an entrepreneur – first as a founding employee of MDPad, an innovative health care technology company, and as Chief Executive Officer of Youth Tech Entrepreneurs, a non-profit that developed technology and business education curriculum for students at the high school level for over 1500 high school students in Massachusetts. Nishith also served five years as a Presidential Appointee in the Clinton Administration, where he worked with the Administrator and Deputy Administrator of the US Agency for International Development for USAID programs in Latin America, the Middle East and Asia, and initiating an effort to utilize the Internet to improve international disaster assistance. Nishith has worked for Education Secretary Richard Riley and as Associate Director of Scheduling & Advance for the President. Nishith has a Master's in Public Administration from George Washington University; and a BS in Political Science from Northeastern University. He has been quoted in many major publications, including the Boston Globe, the New York Times, the Washington Post, Asian Week, the Times of India, the Economic Times, the Financial Times, Newsweek, BCC and NPR.
WEBINAR DURATION: Each session is a 90-minute webinar with 60 minutes of presentation and 30 minutes of Q&A.
COST:Free, but registration required by clicking on register the Register button above.
HOW TO PARTICIPATE?: This webinar is online. You need a computer with web access for the visual/audio. You may also dial-in using the audio-only telephone number. The call in details and instructions on how to join the webinar will be sent to you via email after you register. Once registered to the webinar you will receive a reminder email 24 hours before the start of the webinar with instructions on how to join.
QUESTIONS TO SPEAKERS: Q&A is conducted by a chat box to the speakers.
WHO SHOULD PARTICIPATE IN THE WEBINAR?:National and international media, federal and state government officials, venture capitalists, angel investors, Global 1000 companies, industry representatives, university officials, entrepreneurs and individual investors.
SLIDES AND VIDEO: The slide presentations and video recording will be available on this page. If you are unable to join the live webinar, you may view the recorded video that will be posted within 24 hours after the scheduled webinar ends.