Equity Crowdfunding Symbid Entering the U.S.

Case Solution

Jennie Dvorak, Joost van Houwelingen, Maria Klipper, Marcus Paulsson, Willem Hulsink
Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University ()

In April 2013, following the liberalization of securities regulation, the US government signed a law that finally legalized equity-based crowdfunding in this market. Given that the US is the world’s largest market for equity financing, the new law offers great opportunities for collective investment firms like Symbid looking to expand their operations internationally. Symbid, a Dutch startup operating in the global crowdfunding market, was founded on the foundations of a new financing system that enabled the company to create the conditions for equity-based crowdfunding in Europe. Having established the reputation of the company in the Dutch market, Symbid embarked on another journey with the aim of expanding the business through internationalization. After a series of successful and unsuccessful strategies, Symbid was now considering entering the US market. Faced with stiff competition, the company had only one chance to refine its entry strategy, and Symbid faced a challenge that could determine its future. The case confronts the reader with Symbid’s challenge of entering the previously undisputed US market when considering a niche marketing strategy targeting female entrepreneurs or a mass marketing approach. The main case compares these two approaches. And Case B illustrates the true decision Symbid made. In addition to highlighting the internationalization process of a startup, the case also conveys an image of business financing and the importance of share-based crowdfunding.

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