What is a CIK Number?

Recently, we received a question from an issuer who asked what a CIK number is. If you have ever filed a form with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), you have probably come across the term Central Index Key (CIK). The CIK number is a unique identifier used by the SEC’s computer systems to distinguish corporations, funds, and individuals who have filed disclosures with the SEC. 


A CIK number is a 10-digit code that is an essential part of the SEC’s EDGAR (Electronic Data Gathering, Analysis, and Retrieval) system, which allows the SEC to collect, analyze and distribute financial information about companies and individuals. CIK numbers are assigned by the SEC and must be included in all filings made with the Commission. This allows the SEC’s computer system to quickly and efficiently identify companies and individuals and analyze their filings. It also helps to ensure that filings made by a particular company or individual are accurate and complete.


The easiest way to find a company’s CIK number is by using the SEC’s online database. You can search for CIK numbers using keywords such as the company name or ticker symbol. The search results will provide a list of entities matching your search criteria and their CIK numbers. Keep in mind, the entity’s name may be listed differently than expected.


It is also important to note that not all companies that offer stock for sale are required to file disclosures with the SEC, such as some companies raising capital through Regulation D. Small companies may be granted exemptions from regular SEC reporting and, therefore, may not have a CIK number. However, a CIK number is mandatory for companies that file disclosures.


CIK numbers are essential for the SEC to monitor and regulate the financial markets. By requiring companies and individuals to use CIK numbers when filing disclosures, the SEC can efficiently identify companies and detect potential fraud or other illegal activities to take appropriate action.


CIK numbers are also important for investors and other stakeholders. By providing a unique identifier for each company and individual, CIK numbers allow stakeholders to easily access relevant filings, financial data, and other information. This makes it easier for investors to make informed decisions and for regulators to enforce the rules and regulations that govern the financial markets.


In conclusion, CIK numbers are a critical component of the SEC’s regulatory framework. They are used to track and monitor companies and individuals that file disclosures with the SEC, and they enable investors and other stakeholders to access important financial data and other information. 


We believe that education is an essential part of the capital-raising process, so don’t hesitate to reach out to our team with any other questions that could help you along your capital-raising journey.

Small Businesses and Their Economic Success

Small businesses have always been an integral part of the economy, contributing to job creation and economic growth. Over the last decade, small businesses have faced a variety of challenges, including economic downturns, government regulations, and evolving consumer preferences. Despite these difficulties, small businesses have continued to play a significant role in driving economic success. In this blog, we’ll examine the level of success small businesses have achieved in the economy over the last decade and how JOBS Act regulations have impacted this success.


The Role of Small Businesses in the Economy


Small businesses are often referred to as the backbone of the economy. According to the US Small Business Administration (SBA), small businesses account for 44 percent of US economic activity and employ nearly half of the country’s private sector workforce. In fact, there are 33.2 million small businesses in the United States and they created 8.7 million jobs created between March 2020 and March 2021. Small businesses also contribute to innovation and competition in the marketplace, which in turn drives economic growth


Small Business Challenges and Successes


Over the last decade, small businesses have faced a variety of challenges, including the great recession, rising costs, and increased competition from online retailers. Despite these challenges, small businesses have continued to achieve success in the economy. With eight out of ten small businesses having no employees and 16% of small businesses having up to 19 employees, this sector of the economy is mostly driven by individuals who can take risks and innovate for growth.


Meaning, small business growth often depends on entrepreneurs’ risk-taking capability and ability to identify profitable opportunities. Additionally, the passage of the JOBS Act in 2012 has enabled small businesses to access capital more easily than ever before. The act allows businesses to raise money from investors without having to register with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). This allows smaller organizations that are still private to raise millions of dollars in capital while tapping into a much wider pool of potential investors.


The Impact of JOBS Act Regulations on Small Business Success


The JOBS Act allows companies to use SEC exemptions from registration, which include:


  • Reg CF to raise up to $5 million
  • Reg A to raise up to $75 million
  • Reg D to raise an unlimited amount of capital


These capital-raising methods allow small businesses to access a much wider pool of potential investors, obtain higher levels of capital, and achieve greater success in the economy. By allowing organizations to tap into an audience of investors they would have not had access to previously, the JOBS Act has enabled small businesses to build relationships with their customers, grow their operations, and create good jobs in local economies. With the continued support of government regulations and technological advancements, small businesses are poised to play an even greater role in driving economic success in the years to come.

Online Capital Formation is Always Available, Even When VC Funding Is Not

The venture capital (VC) industry has been struggling since 2022. Venture funding has dropped by more than 50% since 2022 and late-stage investments have plummeted even more dramatically, down 63%. Online capital raising may be a viable alternative for entrepreneurs seeking funding in an uncertain VC climate.


What Is Online Capital Formation?


Online capital formation is the process of using digital platforms to raise funds from investors through JOBS Act regulations. Using exemptions from SEC registration such as RegA+ and RegCF, companies can tap into a larger pool of investors beyond traditional VCs and private equity firms. These investments can be accessed by anyone, regardless of their net worth or accreditation status. On the other hand, venture capital firms are typically limited to investing in businesses with high growth potential and start-up costs that require large sums of money. With online capital raising, entrepreneurs can access smaller sums of money from a larger pool of investors. In 2022, companies raised an impressive $494.0 million from RegCF raises and $431.8 from Reg A through over half a million investments. 


Benefits of Online Capital Formation


Online capital formation offers many benefits for entrepreneurs and investors alike:


  1. Access to a larger pool of investors: By using online capital raising platforms, businesses can access a much wider range of investors than traditional VCs or private equity firms. This allows businesses to access capital from individuals and retail investors who may not have the same wealth or investment track record as professional investors.


  1. Increased transparency: Online capital raising platforms allow for greater transparency, giving investors more information about an offering before they commit to investing in a particular business. This allows investors to make more informed decisions and reduces the risks associated with investing.


  1. Lower cost of capital: Online capital-raising platforms typically charge lower fees than traditional VCs and private equity firms, making it a more cost-effective way to raise funds. Companies are typically able to retain more of their businesses than the VC or private equity route.


Available 24/7/365


Online capital raising is available 24/7/365, which allows entrepreneurs to access funding when they need it without having to wait for the next round of venture capital or private equity investments. This makes online capital raising a particularly attractive option for businesses that need quick access to funds. This makes online capital raising such as Reg A+, Reg CF, and Reg D an attractive option for companies looking to access funds quickly and efficiently.


VCs have traditionally been the go-to source of funding for entrepreneurs, but venture capital investments are dwindling in today’s turbulent economic environment. Online capital raising offers a viable alternative that allows businesses to access a wider pool of investors, increased transparency, and continuous access to capital. With online capital-raising platforms, entrepreneurs can access funding quickly and efficiently without requiring lengthy fundraising cycles. In this challenging economic environment, online capital raising provides a much-needed lifeline for emerging businesses.

What You Need to Know About RegA+

If you are an entrepreneur looking to raise funds, you may have heard of Regulation A+, often referred to simply as Reg A+. This alternative to traditional venture capital, private equity, or other funding sources allows companies to sell securities to the public without going through the lengthy and costly process of registering with the SEC. Since it was expanded in 2012 with the JOBS Act, Reg A+ continues to evolve, facilitating increased capital formation for companies within the private capital market.


What is Reg A+?


The goal of Reg A+ is to make it easier and less expensive for small businesses to access capital while still providing investors with the protection of an SEC-qualified offering. The offering is exempt from complete SEC registration, allowing companies to raise up to $75 million in capital, with certain restrictions and requirements. To qualify for this exemption, a company must file an offering statement (Form 1-A) with the SEC that includes all pertinent information about the business and the offering. The company must also provide ongoing disclosure about its business, including financial statements and other material information.


Who is Reg A+ for?


Reg A+ is aimed primarily at small and medium-sized businesses looking to raise funds from the public, but larger companies can also use it. Because there are fewer restrictions and requirements than traditional SEC registration, Reg A+ offers a more affordable option for companies that do not have access to venture capital or other significant funding sources. Because Reg A+ is such a robust option for companies looking to raise capital, many companies stay private longer instead of going public through an IPO. 


Advantages of Reg A+


Beyond lower costs than going public, Reg A+ offers additional benefits for issuers and investors alike. It is a unique opportunity for investors to get involved with early-stage companies since the offering allows both nonaccredited and accredited investors to invest. At the same time, these investors can benefit from the potential for higher returns and the ability to diversify their portfolios. Investors also benefit from SEC oversight, which aims to protect them and ensure that they are investing in legitimate investment opportunities. Investors may also have options for liquidity, as securities purchased through a Reg A+ offering can be traded on a secondary market.


Reg A+ benefits companies because it offers a relatively simple and cost-effective way to access the public markets while accessing an increased pool of potential investors than a traditional offering. Unlike conventional VC or private equity funding routes, issuers can also retain more ownership over their business while finding investors who share the vision for the mission and direction of the company. Issuers can also benefit enormously from building brand advocates out of their investors, which can, in turn, inspire new investors or customers. 


Reg A+ offers an excellent alternative for small businesses looking to raise capital without going through the lengthy and costly process of registering with the SEC. With a maximum offering cap of $75 million, Reg A+ can be used for companies of all sizes and offers investors the opportunity to access early-stage companies that they may not otherwise have access to.