On the 13th of April 2022, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe approved Lloyd Crowdfunding, a subsidiary of Lloyd Corporate Capital, to operate within the guidelines of the Fintech Regulatory Sandbox. Crowdfunding for business is the online offering of financial securities of a private company to a group of people for investment. Crowdsourcing makes use of the easy accessibility of vast networks of people through social media and crowdfunding websites to bring investors and entrepreneurs together.
The crowdfunding system has generally been used for charity and personal fundraising efforts. Several SMEs in Africa (e.g., Mauritius, South Africa, Morocco, Tunisia, Cote d’Ivoire, Senegal, etc.) have, however, successfully managed to raise capital for business start-up and growth through crowdfunding.
Currently, in Zimbabwe, there is no form of legislation on crowdfunding, hence the use of a regulatory framework known as the Regulatory Sandbox which is monitored by the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe. The Fintech Regulatory Sandbox is intended for innovators in the financial services sector who have already developed their service, product, or business model and are ready to undertake a proof of concept through monitored market testing.
Lloyd Crowdfunding will be in the Regulatory Sandbox for 12 months. The sandbox activities to be tested are those that the Reserve Bank can oversee in terms of the Reserve Bank Act, Chapter 22:15; Banking Act, Chapter 24:20, the National Payments Systems Act, Chapter 24:23; the Money Laundering and Proceeds of Crime Act, CHAPTER 9:24; Exchange Control Act Chapter 22:05 and any other relevant regulation.
The main aim of Lloyd Crowdfunding is to assist Small and Medium-Sized Businesses (SMEs) raise funding for their capital and operational requirements
What are the options for investment and terms?
Lloyd Crowdfunding has four possible options to choose from. These options include equity, quasi-equity, and debt. The promoter (SME) can choose any of the four options to raise capital for their business. The options are explained below.
- Equity – SMEs can get funding in turn by ceding a portion of shareholding. The recommended range of equity stakes to be made available is between 10% and 45% of the funded company.
- Quasi Equity – This type of financing ranks between equity and debt, having a higher risk than senior debt and lower risk than common equity. This includes preference shares, debentures e.tc., together with all the options that come with such an instrument (convertible, redeemable, cumulative, participating, etc.)
- Loan – The loan will carry a market-related risk-driven interest rate and will be for a minimum of 6 months and a maximum of 3 years.
- Equity-loan combination – Combinations of the above in different proportions will be possible, depending on the project being financed.
The platform offers investors an opportunity to invest in exciting, high-potential SMEs. The lower limit for an investor to invest through Lloyd Crowdfunding is one-thousand USD (US$1,000), and the upper limit is US$500,000 or the Zimbabwe dollar equivalent.
Who can join Lloyd Crowdfunding?
Any SME in Zimbabwe which meets the following conditions can list their businesses on the Lloyd Crowdfunding platform.
⦁ SMEs who are incorporated at the registrar of companies
⦁ Companies with bankable projects and ZIMRA registered
⦁ At least two years of operation
⦁ Good track record in terms of banking
According to the company’s website, they are focusing on businesses in Retail, Industrial Supplies and Services, the general service industry, Export, Mining, Agriculture and Agro-processing, Infrastructure Development, Manufacturing as well as Property Development and Management.
You can reach out to Lloyd Crowdfunding for yourself through the channels below:
- Telephone: +263 292 276562;
- Cells: +263 773 875 583, +263 777 554 655
- Email: email@example.com,
- Website: www.lloydcrowdfunding.com