CrowdFundBeat publisher Sydney Armani says he loves to cover and contribute to at alt-fi conferences because he truly wants to see the industry grow.
His session is “Evaluating the expansion of and economic factors behind the growth of crowdfunding.” Mr. Armani is scheduled to be joined by Brian Good, CEO and Founder of Eagle Group Finance, Money360 CEO Evan Gentry, Brew Johnson, the CEO and Co-Founder of PeerStreet, Realty Mogul CEO Jilliene Helman and Nav Athwal, the Founder and CEO of RealtyShares.
The group will explore the impact of cap and interest rates, the portal funding environment, impact of Titles III and IV, transparency, liquidity and the impact of successful industry raises.
Mr. Armani has more than two decades of experience in Silicon Valley as an investor, mentor, and founder of Hello Net Internet and several other companies.
The area of crowdfunding that most interests Mr. Armani is real estate, and he cites similar reasons to why many people attracted to real estate in any form.
“Real estate is a safe investment,” Mr. Armani said. “It’s tangible, people understand it.”
Real estate crowdfunding allows people to invest in their communities, with properties they know, Mr. Armani said. Many Silicon Valley entrepreneurs invest in properties, mostly within an 80-mile radius of where they live, he added.
“Take for example people from the area who invest in a Napa winery. They know it.”
Mr. Armani estimated there are more than 70 real estate crowdfunding platforms, with many different group types, including family offices, active in the space.
Even during the recession, real estate investment provided opportunity, Mr. Armani said.
“While there were problems at the bank, many commercial retail and multi-family unit opportunities were still available.”
Mr. Armani is channeling his passion for real estate into a new project. Realty XE will show people how to become involved in real estate, which the site says is “crowdfunding’s next hot frontier”.
Mr. Armani said he has a passion for educating entrepreneurs, one which is reflected in several ways.
He publishes CrowdFundBeat, a news aggregation site featuring alt-fi topics. Each March he hosts the Silicon Valley Crowdfunding Conference in Mountain View California, an opportunity for him to call on his many contacts in the industry to discuss legal issues, real estate, SME lending and other topics. He is also developing a “live crowdfunding demo pitch contest” to provide a way for entrepreneurs to reach investors.
“I really enjoy mentoring people and helping them develop as entrepreneurs,” Mr. Armani said. “I care about the industry and want to see it grow.”