In the days since the 27 September vote, Catalonia’s call for independence and regional election results have reignited debates against the Spanish government’s longstanding refusal to allow an independence referendum. There has also been a call for freedom in finance, specifically a call for independence from traditional banks.
17 funding initiatives which aim to provide alternatives to brick and mortar banking have been endorsed by the Catalan Government, according to the Catalan News Agency. The Catalan Government aims to promote these alternative platforms, which are considered a key factor for innovation and internationalisation, “and, therefore, for businesses competitiveness” emphasized the Catalan Business and Occupation department. The Catalan Business and Occupation department, through the public business innovation agency, ACCIÓ, has recognized the quality of 17 alternative systems. These first initiatives that have received public accreditation include private investors’ networks, crowdfunding platforms, crowdlending systems and invoice traders. This first-time initiative aims to promote and facilitate access to alternative funding systems Small and Medium-sized Companies (‘PIMES’ in Catalan) and Catalan companies. The Catalan Government plans to develop these alternative platforms, which are considered a key factor for innovation and internationalization.
“It’s great that a public body recognizes the value of new ways of financial interchange, particularly Equity and Lending Crowdfunding,” commented innovator Daniel Oliver, Presidente Asociación Española de Crowdfunding via email. “The implied admission that new financial models are necessary to the economy is a sure sign that Alternative Financing is on its way to becoming mainstream, and that’s the best possible news.”
The 17 alternative platforms will benefit from this certification until 31 December 2016, when they will be reviewed to check if they still meet the requirements, according to Catalan companies’ needs. With this certification, the Catalan Government wants to highlight the quality of the alternative funding systems, reinforce their reliability and make them more visible. The goal is to promote and facilitate Small and Medium-sized Companies (‘PIMES’ in Catalan) and Catalan companies’ access to alternative funding, away from traditional banking. It also benefits the investors, as it will allow them to invest in the real economy in a more direct way.