TEN IDEAS: Unleash Small Businesses to Raise Money

As you may be aware, I’m a business attorney. I help launch both small and mid-sized businesses.

Formally, a business is born when its articles are filed with the Secretary of State.

But that’s hardly enough.

A small business needs start-up funding. Funding for real estate (leased or owned). For equipment. For inventory. For employee wages. For legal compliance. The list goes on.

Most small-business owners are not independently wealthy. They don’t have $50,000 sitting around. When an entrepreneur tries to make it work, without adequate funding, the failure rates are very high.

. . .

Nowadays, people connect with each other online, through social media, predominately. Naturally, this is a source of potential investors, even at a level as low as $1,000.

Unfortunately, Ohio does not allow an entrepreneur to raise capital online (called “intrastate crowdfunding”). Only 14 states have such restrictive regulations. Here’s the upshot: Ohio forces a small business to hire an attorney like me (for upwards of $15,000-$20,000) to jump through legal hoops. That needs to end.

We need to open entrepreneurship to more people. I will advocate for loosening these restrictions, so that more Ohioans can achieve the American Dream.

By the way, this isn’t just a Republican idea. President Obama has advocated for crowdfunding, too. I will get a bipartisan coalition to fix this problem.

My knowledge of small business has earned me the endorsement of the Ohio Chamber of Commerce and the National Federation of Independent Businesses.