Expo Day Two Agenda: Institutional Crowdfinance, Legal Marijuana Investment, and the Lions Den

Day Two of the Growth Capital Expo will focus on later stage private equity and pre-IPO emerging growth capital opportunities. With the advent of investor crowdfinance ushered in by the passage of the JOBS Act, emerging growth companies are finding more opportunities for capital formation via private markets than ever before. Day Two the Expo general session will feature a full day of discussion panels on the rapidly developing Rule 506b and 506c online private placement market, the prospects for a viable mini-IPO venture market employing Reg A+ offerings, and strategies for incorporating these new innovations in equity finance into your corporate capital strategy.

The morning of Day Two will kick off with deep dives into those two promising JOBS Act initiatives, first regarding the new Reg A+ mini-public offering structure that is expected to become available later this year. If enacted as proposed, this less-heralded part of the JOBS Act could quickly overshadow equity crowdfunding as the most important source of new public capital for pre-IPO emerging growth companies. We’ll hear from attorneys and capital markets advisers deeply involved in the public advisory process with the SEC and experienced in alternative public offerings on how Reg A+ will revolutionize the microcap IPO.

A discussion of the most important innovation in private emerging growth capital, the developing online Reg D private placement markets operating under Rule 506b and 506c, will follow. We’ll hear from platform operators, deal attorneys and placement agents working with the top 506 platforms on how these markets are quickly growing to dominate small-value equity raises by private growth companies, and may soon challenge investment banks for the largest deals.

The following morning panels on Day Two will focus on incorporating Reg A+, crowdfinanced Rule 506 offerings and equity crowdfunding into your company’s capital strategy. Our panel of deal attorneys, investment bankers and advisers will offer their experience and advice on how to best use these new tools in the capital toolbox to lower your cost of capital, strengthen your capital “stack”, and fund your corporate development goals.

The final panel of the morning will focus on developing liquidity for these new private equity and “public-lite” offerings via secondary stock markets. Perhaps most critical to the long-term viability of these new equity capital conduits is the development of post-offering liquidity for investors in these securities, whether it be through more robust and accessible public offering exits such as Reg A+ uplistings and confidentially-marketed IPOs, or through active private secondary venture exchanges. Our panel of top secondary market operators and advisers will address the state of the private stock secondary markets and the future of venture exchanges for emerging growth company securities.

The afternoon will change gears a bit to drill down into one of the hottest sectors of investor interest: the legal marijuana business. This once-controversial area for institutional investment has seen a sea-change in investor sentiment now that four states have legalized marijuana for recreational sale, joining the 23 other states that have authorized sales for medical reasons. We will hear from growth capital investors active in legal marijuana business investment on the opportunities and pitfalls on this risky and potentially hugely profitable sector.

We will wrap up Day Two, and the Expo general session, with a new feature of the Expo – The Lions Den, our homage to the popular Shark Tank TV show. The Lions Den will present four executive teams from private emerging growth companies for 10 minutes of pitching and five minutes of critique by a panel of top investors, followed by a vote to award the winner of the Emerging Growth Gladiator award for the best pitch of Expo 2015.

For more information on participating in the Lions Den, contact Expo program director Brett Goetschius at brett@growthcapitalexpo.com .

Next week we will announce our expert faculty for the Expo general session panels. To make sure you keep up with all of our announcements regarding the Expo please register here and follow us on Twitter.