GLS Bank has launched an equity crowdfunding platform in collaboration with CrowdDesk claiming the title of the first German bank to enable sustainable projects to be financed by the crowd. According to the GLS Crowd website the two partners will each focus on what they do best:
- GLS Bank will leverage its expertise and extensive network to identify projects. It will select these on the basis of its investment and financing principles and will propose them to GLS Crowd.
- CrowdDesk will provide the technical infrastructure and commercial services while operating the GLS Crowd online platform at GLS Crowdfunding GmbH.
The legal basis for investment crowdfunding is provided by the German Investment Provisions Act (VermAnlG). Companies may finance projects for up to €2.5 million.
GLS Crowd reports that initial response has been quite positive. The first few days of operation has seen over €200,000 invested in a solar energy project – Solar park Bad Rodach. Investors may participate beginning at €250 receiving a fixed interest rate and a possible bonus rate as their return.
“With the crowd financing, we create a new instrument to meet a proven goal: to bring money to where it makes sense,” says Dirk Kannacher, Chairman of the GLS Bank.
CrowdDesk is a white label provider that not only provides technology but also additional modules such as marketing, legal security, and investor relations. CrowdDesk currently powers 23 platforms with the technology including real estate investments.