Armstrong Teasdale Helps Create Real Estate Crowdfunding Site
While the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act is leading numerous law firms to offer legal services to the crowdfunding industry, Armstrong Teasdale is actively playing a role in the operations of an online commercial crowdfunding site called Selequity. The firm is a co-founder of the new platform and Armstrong Teasdale Partner A.J. Chivetta is Selequity’s CEO.
Selequity launched May 4 during Tech Crunch Disrupt in New York where the platform became the first commercial real estate (CRE) crowdfunding company to compete at the annual technology conference. Selequity was one of only 30 technology startups chosen to participate in TechCrunch’s Startup Battlefield, a competition in which companies present in front of potential venture capital investors, media and other interested parties for prize money. Former notable Battlefield alums include Dropbox, TripIt and Fitbit.
Through its online platform, Selequity provides accredited investors exposure to professionally operated, private real estate investment deals. Likewise, commercial real estate owners (sponsors) have the ability to use the Selequity network to access a broader range of accredited investors.
Armstrong Teasdale’s involvement in the site grows out of the firm’s emphasis on innovation, its service to emerging and startup companies, and a long history of representing the real estate and investment communities.
“As the laws changed, Armstrong Teasdale saw the opportunity to be a front-runner in the future of a crowdfunded commercial real estate investment model,” said Mike Chivell, Armstrong Teasdale’s managing partner. “We are partnering with Selequity to advance the legal side of their work.”
Chivetta became a founding partner of the platform in 2014 along with two former top executives of Cassidy Turley, the third-largest national commercial real estate company in the United States. Chivetta represented Cassidy Turley as it grew to today’s powerhouse from a local brokerage, acquiring companies in 10 major markets along the way.
While heading Selequity, Chivetta will maintain his law practice at Armstrong Teasdale focusing on corporate law, mergers and acquisitions and international transactions.
“Selequity is taking what used to be the cumbersome process of manually raising capital and putting it online in a straightforward, easy-to-use platform,” said Chivetta. “Much is changing in the commercial real estate industry with new laws, such as the JOBS Act, as well as the adoption of new technologies to reach investors. With Selequity, we are not only helping to open up opportunities for 8 million accredited investors; we are also providing much-needed services to real estate owners looking to raise capital in a faster, more efficient way than ever before.”