Groupon IPO to Test Nascent Private Stock Markets

(Reuters) – Groupon Inc’s IPO may be the biggest test yet for the nascent private stock exchanges that allow investors to trade the shares of hot start-ups like Facebook Inc before they go public. The daily deals website is the first major company set to price its initial public offering at a valuation far below […]

Sharespost Sees Bright Future in Private Placements

Two year ago, Sharespost founder Greg Brogger began publicly sharing plans to build a private placement marketplace to directly connect startups with investors. The fruit of that effort began to pay off today, when Sharepost, which since June 2009 has been helping qualified buyers and sellers trade shares in fast-growing, not-yet-public startups like Facebook, closed […]

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TrueCar, “Groupon for Cars,” Raises $200M, Including Through Sharespost

TrueCar, a company that provides car-sales prices to consumers, has raised over $200 million in debt and equity financing to use for acquisitions and growth, the company said. The transaction underscores continuing investor enthusiasm for companies that allow consumers to find good buys using the Internet. Daily-deals site Groupon has 115 million subscribers, although it […]

Exclusive: SEC Will Likely Toughen Rules for Secondary Markets

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission officials in March met with secondary market executives to warn them of impending regulatory changes, peHUB has learned. The regulators told the executives that they want more stringent checks of individuals’ accreditation and improved diligence regarding the financials of companies being auctioned to investors, according to multiple sources familiar with […]

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Secondary Markets Bank on Exiting VCs to Fuel Auctions

A Twitter post, immediately following the back-to-back SharesPost and SecondMarket West Coast events, served as an echoing reverberation of the growing clout of private stock auctions as an industry. Said JenniferJones, “all of [Fred Wilson’s] (union square ventures) fund profits currently are through secondary sales says Jamie Montgomery.” Wilson, when contacted by peHUB, called the […]

The Velvet Rope

Operators of private stock exchanges want accredited investors to think they can buy into future IPOs of Twitter and LinkedIn early and freely, but that is no longer the case. Private companies coveted by institutional investors and individuals alike are increasingly putting strict limitations on who can buy their shares, according to sources who spoke […]

With a New Platform, Xpert Financial Will Also Take a New Round

They might have been a little late to the party, but it’s still only just begun. Xpert Financial, which will soon launch a secondary shares trading platform similar to that of SecondMarket and SharesPost, is considering potential backers for a new round of capital. The company, which has already raised between $3 million and $5 […]

SharesPost’s Weir Hits Back at WSJ Grandma Piece

Earlier this month, the Wall St. Journal published a piece in which author Dennis Berman created an account at private stock market SharesPost as a test of the company’s accreditation policies. Berman states in his story that the falsification of accreditation info—of all things, under the guise of being his own grandmother—was an attempt to illustrate private trading markets’ difficulty in identifying faked data. However, SharesPost CEO Dave Weir sent the following e-mail to SharesPost users, which was shared with peHUB.

Secondary Markets May Squeeze VCs on Both Ends

Recently, venture capital firms have had to contend with increasing investor interest at virtually all levels of the startup funding ecosystem. Angel investors are flooding the woodwork, pumping capital into early stage companies on a widespread basis, changing how startup capital is raised. Now, VCs are competing with secondary market investors at the other end […]

The Secondary Market Universe is Expanding!

The secondary market is expanding at a blinding pace. SecondMarket recently revealed plans to substantially increase its offerings of pre-IPO company stock to about 12,000. SharesPost, which said it will follow in SecondMarket’s footsteps and seek to become a registered broker-dealer under FINRA, is likely not too far behind. Already, secondary market trading has provided […]

Poll Results: Yes, VC Firms Should Ban Partners from Trading on Secondary Exchanges

I’m disappointed by the results of our poll about whether venture capital firms should ban their partners from buying and selling private company shares on secondary exchanges such as Sharespost. The survey grew out of a great story by colleague Jonathan Marino that exposed the practice and the potential conflicts of interest it engenders.

A total of 130 peHUB readers took the poll, with 80 (or 62%) answering “yes” and 50 (or 39%) answering no. As I said in an earlier post, when I created the poll, I thought about coming up with a different question because I figured it was a no-brainer that most people would answer yes.

Poll: Ban Questionable Practice of VCs Trading on Secondary Exchanges?

Create your free online surveys with SurveyMonkey, the world’s leading questionnaire tool.

Lest you believed that sleazy behavior was confined to Wall Street, we point you to questionable activities of some of the residents of Sand Hill Road. My colleague Jonathan Marino today wrote about how some venture capitalists are buying and selling shares of private companies on secondary exchanges – and how quite a few firms don’t have policies forbidding these transactions.

This truly is a black eye for the venture industry, which has been trying to regain credibility after a decade of under-performance. The message being sent by the VCs engaged in this behavior is, “Well, I’m not going to make any carry on my fund, so I may as well see if I can make a quick buck on SharesPost.” I’m sure the LPs paying fees on those funds are thrilled to hear that.

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Buoyed by Bubbly Secondary Market, Sharespost Raises a Whopping … Wait, Just $3.3M

According to an SEC filing first discovered by Fortune‘s Dan Primack, private shares exchange Sharespost  is closing in on a $3.3 million round. The round would seem to represent Sharespost’s first outside financing. Until recently, it has been bootstrapped, including by founder Greg Brogger, who told me last year that the “plucky upstart” had already been […]

Everything You Ever Wanted to Know About SharesPost (Including Its Roadmap)

It was just last June when SharesPost first went live, yet the 14-person, Santa Monica-based company is already an invaluable player in the tech industry, or so it seems at the moment. Sharespost, which connects private company shareholders with buyers via company-specific bulletin boards, has already registered 17,000 users and facilitated 70 deals with an […]

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