Solar Crowdfunding

Crowdfunding is an innovative financing model which has rapidly become a popular method used by startup organizations to raise capital. Funding platforms like Kickstarter and Kiva help raise money for everything from documentary films to energy bars. Thus far crowdfunding has only really allowed individuals to make donations or zero-interest loans in return for free products if the startup reached its funding target. With the passage of the 2012 Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act, however, there is now the potential for equity- and debt-based crowdfunding. This development has the potential to broaden the scope of organizations and projects that can be funded via “the crowd” and could drastically reduce financing costs for solar PV projects in the U.S. This SunShot SolarOPs fact sheet explores crowdfunding concepts and how it can be used as financing tool to reduce the soft costs of solar PV.