Is the “American dream” dead?

Is the idea of achieving the “American dream” a dying fantasy that is becoming impossible for more and more people? Yes, unfortunately, it is true. There is no doubt that the economy is suffering, and suffering with it is the American dream.

Entrepreneurs can’t afford to start businesses, families can’t afford to buy homes, and students can’t afford to go to college. Banks don’t seem to care, and the government seems to be paralyzed from the waist down.

But the fact is you don’t need a bank loan in order to build and grow a successful business, just like you don’t need an Ivy League college degree in order to be a successful entrepreneur and businessperson (though, it can help). We have to help ourselves and save our own economy, our own businesses, our American dream.

Raise money. Build dreams. 40Billion.com … Let’s start here!

40Billion.com logo

5 tips for approaching friends and family about your business

At 40billion.com, we provide online tools to help small-business and startup entrepreneurs increase access to funding and resources by leveraging their social networks, including friends and family. Here are 5 tips that we give to entrepreneurs to help them approach friends and relatives about their business:

1.  ASK FOR ADVICE & REFERRALS, NOT HANDOUTS

When you approach friends and family about your business, just share your idea in a conversational manner, and ask them for their advice, feedback, or referral. People are usually glad to give you their point-of-view if they think their advice or feedback may be helpful. And, if they really believe in you, they will either offer to help or they’ll be willing to refer you to someone who can help.

2.  FORMALIZE A LOAN OR DISCOUNT

Businesses often get started with a loan from the entrepreneur’s friend or relative, but it can be difficult to manage the relationship, especially if the loan is not formalized with a written agreement. Create a formal loan agreement with details of the loan, including what is owed, when payments are due, and any consequences for missing payments. Even if you’ve promised a discount to your friend or relative in exchange for a loan or referral, put it in writing and provide a discount coupon that can be redeemed. This may significantly reduce the risk of ruining your personal relationship over business.

3.  GIVE A PRESENTATION

Are you serious about your business? Then give a business plan presentation to your friends and family, and show them. This is your chance to display your professionalism and passion, while getting free advice and feedback from people you know. The result could get you closer to the funding, resources, and customers you need to get your business up and running.

4.  POST ON SOCIAL NETWORKING SITES

Add a description of your business to social networking websites, such as Facebook and LinkedIn. This easily allows your friends and family to read about what you’re doing and spread the word to other people they know. So, instead of you going to them, they will come to you and ask about your new business.

5.  KEEP IN TOUCH

Be sure to thank your friends and family who supported you or helped you spread the word. Then, be sure to keep the lines of communication open by sending them regular company updates to let them know that their support has been put to good use, and you’re achieving those milestones that you set in your business plan. These communications will go a long way toward maintaining good relationships with your friends-and-family supporters, and they will be more likely to support you again as customers, investors, advisors and advocates.

40Billion.com Launches Funding Probability for Small Business Entrepreneurs

Tool uses algorithm to estimate likelihood that friends and family will invest in a business

40Billion.com, the leading professional social funding platform, has launched a beta version of its Funding Probability tool to help users determine who in their social networks are most likely to provide funding for their business ventures.

It is estimated that over 50% of new businesses generate funds from friends and family of the entrepreneurs. However, for many entrepreneurs, the main challenge that they face is locating the right people who are most willing and able to fund their ventures. Recognizing this common problem, 40Billion.com has created a unique solution called Funding Probability.

As the name suggests, the Funding Probability tool helps users estimate the probability that each person in their social network will become a funder or investor. The tool is based on a proprietary algorithm, which ranks each of the user’s contacts and indicates funding probability with an easy scale of High, Medium, and Low. The “High” probability contacts are those individuals who are most likely to provide funding to a particular business venture, and the “Low” probability contacts are individuals who are least likely to fund it. Based on this scale, the system is able to match the user’s venture with the most promising funding sources in their social networks.

Since launching a prototype of the Funding Probability tool in April, the company has seen promising results as 9 out of 10 actual funders in the entrepreneur’s social network on 40Billion were ranked either High or Medium on the funding probability scale.

The Funding Probability feature saves entrepreneurs time and resources that they often spend chasing unlikely funding sources. Fundraisers can access the tool by clicking Invite Your Friends on their business fundraising profile page, and 40Billion takes much of the guess work out of raising money. Step by step, the online company is working to make social funding easier for U.S. small businesses to raise money than traditional funding methods.

About 40Billion.com

40Billion.com is the social funding network for small businesses and startup entrepreneurs. 40Billion.com, Inc. is the first Internet-based microfinance company serving American small businesses. 40Billion.com’s scalable platform helps entrepreneurs raise funding more affordably through friends and family than through banks or other traditional financial institutions. Using proprietary online tools, entrepreneurs build social networks – including friends, relatives, colleagues, customers, and other contacts – and use these connections to raise capital through small business loans and gifts. Entrepreneurs create fundraising profiles and invite their connections to offer funding in exchange for discounts or potential returns. In business since 2008, the company aims to address a $40 billion funding gap. 40Billion.com, Inc. is headquartered in Atlanta, GA.

40Billion.mobi is our new mobile website for professionals on-the-go

You can now access the power of 40Billion anywhere you are by using your Web-enabled mobile phone, Blackberry, iPhone, or Android smartphone. Sign in, manage your account, view Raises, view user profiles, read emails, add contacts, send invitations, search resources, and much more with the convenience of our mobile Web app.

Check it out at http://40billion.mobi on your phone today.

40Billion.com mobile website at 40billion.mobi

– The 40Billion Team

40billion.com Introduces Commercial Paper Offering



Additional social network funding option to help entrepreneurs create their own American dream

Nov 29, 2010 – Atlanta, GA, November 29, 2010—40Billion.com (http://www.40billion.com), a micro-funding platform that facilitates business capital fundraising through gifts and loans from an entrepreneur’s network of friends and family online, today announced the addition of an innovative Commercial Paper offering.

Commercial Paper is an unsecured Promissory Note to meet short-term liquidity needs. It is a lower cost alternative to a traditional bank line-of-credit (LOC).  Commercial Paper, which has been in existence for over 100 years, is used commonly by large corporations to raise quick and low cost working capital. 40Billion.com is pleased to be able to offer this reputable financing option to small- and mid-sized businesses seeking to borrow $5,000 to $1,000,000 for up to 270 days.

“We see this as a true ‘win-win’ situation for both investors and borrowers,” said Harendra Jani, vice-president of finance, 40Billion.com.  “If you asked entrepreneurs to name the most difficult obstacle to overcome when launching their business, the most common answer is likely to be access to low cost capital.  Providing a venue to access low cost capital has been 40Billion.com’s mission since day one, and the addition of Commercial Paper speaks directly to that mission.”

40Billion.com aims to address a $40 Billion gap in small business and startup funding by providing an online platform for social funding so that more entrepreneurs can have access to affordable business financing through gifts and loans.

40Billion.com helps entrepreneurs:

  • Gain access to needed funding to start and grow their business, with more funding options, and at rates that are lower and more affordable than most alternatives.
  • Formalize the terms of funding in order to reduce the risk of ruining relationships with friends-and-family funders, while building a network and reputation that they can utilize for future funding needs.
  • Take advantage of unique features that are created specifically for entrepreneurs that need to raise money.
  • Find trusted resources and services for their business, such as incorporation or company formation.
  • Acquire customers by offering services to other members on 40Billion.com.

“One of the many effects of the volatile credit market environment of the past few years is severely decreased access to affordable sources of business credit,” said Cornelius McNab, founder and CEO, 40Billion.com. “No segment has been affected more by this than entrepreneurs trying to live out their own version of the American dream.  Today’s entrepreneurs are tomorrow’s employers.  Providing access to capital for entrepreneurs will undoubtedly lead to job creation in the future, and 40Billion.com is proud to play a role in that process.”

About 40Billion.com
40Billion.com, Inc. is the first Internet-based microfinance company serving American small businesses. 40Billion.com’s scalable platform helps entrepreneurs raise funding more affordably through friends and family than through banks or other traditional financial institutions. Using proprietary online tools, entrepreneurs build social networks – including friends, relatives, colleagues, customers, and other contacts – and use these connections to raise capital through small business loans and gifts. Entrepreneurs create fundraising profiles and invite their connections to offer funding in exchange for discounts or potential returns. 40Billion.com, Inc. is headquartered in Atlanta, GA. For more information, visit http://www.40Billion.com.

Grab a widget! Add a custom widget on your website or blog for easier access to your business fundraising profile.

It’s easier than ever before to share and access Raises (business fundraising profiles) all over the Web. Just add a 40billion widget to your own website or blog. Simply copy the embed code and paste it into your website’s code wherever you want the widget to appear.
 
You can grab a widget for any Raise that you have access to on 40billion.com. Just click “Widgets” at the bottom of the page.
 
Want to try out an example? Visit our sample Raise and then click the Widgets link at the bottom of the page. Copy the code in the box for the widget that you want to use, and paste the code into your website or blog.
It’s just as simple as adding a YouTube video to your website or blog, and it’s FREE.
 

New funding option launched: Commercial Paper short-term business loans for operating expenses

We’ve launched a new, innovative, and exciting addition to our business fundraising platform… Commercial Paper! Commercial Paper is ideal for existing businesses seeking short-term loans of $5,000 up to $1,000,000 for operating expenses or working capital.

Now, 40billion.com offers 3 alternative ways to raise funding for your small business: gifts & donations, private direct loans, and commercial paper short-term loans. Check it out, and start a Raise at http://www.40billion.com/raise_start.asp now.

Raise business capital from the people you know on 40billion.com

To your success,

-The 40billion Team

COMING SOON: Short-term working capital loans, a.k.a. “commercial paper”

Short term business loans coming soon to 40billion.com

We’re busy developing an innovative new product to facilitate short-term “commercial paper” loans for operating expenses. This will be available as a new funding type and a great potential solution to the short-term liquidity problems of millions of existing small businesses in America.

What is commercial paper (CP)?  CP is an unsecured Promissory Note with a fixed maturity of 1 to 270 days. Think of CP as an IOU (i.e., “I owe you”), lasting from a day to nine months. It is issued to investors who have temporary idle cash and want to earn a decent return, perhaps even while helping out a friend/family member’s business with short-term liquidity (i.e., cash) needs to cover operating expenses or current assets.

  • By law, CP can be used to fund operating expenses or current assets only (e.g., buying inventory, making payroll, or other short-term cash needs). It is not used for financing fixed assets such as land, buildings or machinery, which are long-term assets.
  • CP is a quick, easy, and cost-effective way of raising working capital and can be a lower-cost alternative to a Line-Of-Credit (LOC) with a bank.
  • CP has been around since the 19th century and is typically used by big corporations to raise quick and low-cost working capital.

But we’re creating a 21st century version, and never before has CP been offered as a solution for small businesses in the way that we’ll unveil in just a few weeks.  Here’s a clue: It’s like Facebook and eBay for microfinance. Got it?  Stay tuned, and check out 40billion.com for more info and the big launch date!

Introducing the Social Business Rating System, a.k.a. SBRS score, for small businesses and startups!

You may have noticed that there is now a unique score given to each Raise (business fundraising profile) on 40billion.com. This is the SBRS score, where SBRS stands for Social Business Rating System™. It is a proprietary system developed exclusively by 40billion.com to rate businesses based on criteria that really matter for success, not traditional credit scores.

SBRS generates a score for each Raise based on 17 or more criteria, including business-related success measures, entrepreneur profile, peer ratings, and reviews. It is a novel approach to rating businesses that does not exist anywhere else.

The SBRS score helps funders and entrepreneurs to compare business ventures and assess their potential likelihood of success. 850 is the highest possible SBRS score, and scores are updated weekly (not monthly like traditional credit scores).

What can entrepreneurs, small businesses, and startups do to increase their SBRS scores? Start by editing and updating your Raise, editing and updating your personal profile, and increasing your fundraising and social networking activity on the site.

Here are just a few things that may influence your business’ SBRS score and which you can control:

  • % of Raise profile completed — when starting a Raise, be sure to fill in the profile completely and honestly.
  • % of personal profile completed — be sure to fill in your personal profile completely and honestly.
  • # of recommendations received
  • Amount of funding raised
  • # of connections in your social network
  • # of invitations sent to people you know
  • # of followers — i.e., people following your Raise
  • # of Raises you’ve started or participated in
  • # of company updates added to your Raise

So, what is your SBRS score? If it’s currently below 550, then we believe you’ve got some work to do in order to increase your likelihood of success! Start with the tips above, and your SBRS score will grow along with your business over time.

Grow your social network to over 100 people fast

40billion.com is the social funding network for entrepreneurs and people who support entrepreneurs. Whether you’re starting a business, running a business, funding a business, supporting someone you know who has started a business, or providing services to business owners, this is where you want to be!

It all starts with your social network of friends, relatives, co-workers, classmates, and other people you know. Use your social network to help you raise funding for a business, support businesses seeking funding and resources, and even acquire customers. Your personal profile page is where you can connect with people in your social network and grow your network.

We recommend building a network of at least 100 people. To add people to your network, find people already on 40billion, invite people to join, import your contacts from your email (e.g., Gmail, Yahoo Mail, AOL, or Outlook), and post to your Facebook page.

The more connections you have in your network, the more you’ll be able to accomplish… and the more fun it will be!

Use our Startup Guides to get your business up-and-running fast

Now you can access our five Startup Guides, and you can download the MP3 audio files and the quick-start templates to help get your business going fast.

Visit http://www.40billion.com/startupguides/ to get these quick and easy Startup Guides today.

In these Startup Guides, you’ll discover useful tips for:

  • Funding your business in 4 ways
  • Writing a business plan in 13 easy steps
  • Forming a company or incorporating
  • Managing your cash flow… so you don’t run out of money
  • Protecting your ideas and intellectual property

Go to http://www.40billion.com/startupguides/, or just click “Startup Guides” from the home page of 40billion.com!

Need to raise more money? Need more time to raise additional funding? Extend your Raise!

Did you know that you can extend your Raise for additional months? Even if your Raise has already ended, you may extend it in order to continue raising funding for your business until you reach your funding target.

To extend your Raise, just go to your account at http://www.40billion.com/my_account.asp, click “Extend” next to the Raise you’d like to extend, and add up to 6 more months of time for only $9.99 per month.

Add more time to your Raise today!

5 tips for approaching friends and family about your business

At 40billion.com, we provide online tools to help small-business and startup entrepreneurs increase access to funding and resources by leveraging their social networks, including friends and family. Here are 5 tips that we give to entrepreneurs to help them approach friends and relatives about their business:

1.  ASK FOR ADVICE & REFERRALS, NOT HANDOUTS

When you approach friends and family about your business, just share your idea in a conversational manner, and ask them for their advice, feedback, or referral. People are usually glad to give you their point-of-view if they think their advice or feedback may be helpful. And, if they really believe in you, they will either offer to help or they’ll be willing to refer you to someone who can help.

2.  FORMALIZE A LOAN OR DISCOUNT

Businesses often get started with a loan from the entrepreneur’s friend or relative, but it can be difficult to manage the relationship, especially if the loan is not formalized with a written agreement. Create a formal loan agreement with details of the loan, including what is owed, when payments are due, and any consequences for missing payments. Even if you’ve promised a discount to your friend or relative in exchange for a loan or referral, put it in writing and provide a discount coupon that can be redeemed. This may significantly reduce the risk of ruining your personal relationship over business.

3.  GIVE A PRESENTATION

Are you serious about your business? Then give a business plan presentation to your friends and family, and show them. This is your chance to display your professionalism and passion, while getting free advice and feedback from people you know. The result could get you closer to the funding, resources, and customers you need to get your business up and running.

4.  POST ON SOCIAL NETWORKING SITES

Add a description of your business to social networking websites, such as Facebook and LinkedIn. This easily allows your friends and family to read about what you’re doing and spread the word to other people they know. So, instead of you going to them, they will come to you and ask about your new business.

5.  KEEP IN TOUCH

Be sure to thank your friends and family who supported you or helped you spread the word. Then, be sure to keep the lines of communication open by sending them regular company updates to let them know that their support has been put to good use, and you’re achieving those milestones that you set in your business plan. These communications will go a long way toward maintaining good relationships with your friends-and-family supporters, and they will be more likely to support you again as customers, investors, advisors and advocates.

40billion.com Launches New Features to Help Small Businesses Find Funding

Innovative Tools Help Small Businesses Access Loans and Resources by Networking Online

ATLANTA, GeorgiaJuly 28, 2009 – 40billion.com (http://www.40billion.com) launched new features to enable small business entrepreneurs to raise capital and access startup resources through friends, family, and others in their communities and social networks.

Most small businesses startups fail due to lack of adequate funding and resources, and there is a $40 billion gap in seed funding. By combining innovative tools with the power of the Internet, 40billion.com aims to bridge the gap and enable millions more small businesses to succeed.

About half of all new businesses seek financing from the entrepreneur’s friends and family, but it can be difficult to communicate business ideas and to manage funding relationships with many people. 40billion.com simplifies everything by enabling entrepreneurs to create business plan profiles and launch fundraising drives that are viewable anywhere via the Internet. And it is free to sign up and get started.

Entrepreneurs can broadcast their business ideas and funding requests to friends and family, even post them on popular social networking websites, and the service allows many people to make loans or gift contributions ($25 up to $10,000) in support of a business, while easily tracking and receiving notifications online.

Furthermore, lenders and borrowers may download a promissory note template, which they can use to formalize business loans in a more professional manner. Loan interest rates are negotiated between the lenders and borrowers, and 40billion.com emails notifications when funding offers are received and reminders when payments are due.

As an incentive, entrepreneurs may offer product discounts and freebies in exchange for low- or no-interest funding and other much-needed resources. Soon, for added confidence, those providing the funding will be able to track how the entrepreneur spends the funds that are raised.

There are additional features available exclusively for members, including the ability to schedule online business plan presentations, an open database of service providers, a job board for posting and browsing startup jobs, and a discussion forum (a.k.a., The Elevator) where everyone can share ideas and tips about what works and what does not. Members can even follow a company as it progresses, by signing up to receive alerts whenever the entrepreneur posts company updates.

Advantages over banks and other lending websites

  • No credit score required: raise money for a business, while keeping personal finances and credit score private.
  • Private profiles: protect ideas and limit viewing to invited participants only.
  • $99,000 maximum: raise more funding than many other sites allow.
  • Gift contributions: provide an additional funding option, besides loans.
  • Targeted business network: leverage other entrepreneurs and lenders with similar interests to raise funding, find service providers, post jobs, and acquire customers.
  • Spending tracker: lenders track how the funding is spent by the entrepreneur, in order to increase peace-of-mind, transparency, and accountability.

 

Advantages over conventional friends-and-family loans

  • One-to-many: manage and track hundreds of relationships, transactions and communications at the same time; no need to make a hundred individual loan payments every month.
  • Email reminders: get reminders automatically when payments are due, and get notifications when new company updates, transactions, or offers are posted.
  • Public profiles: expand access to funding and resources by connecting with thousands of people who visit 40billion.com every month.
  • Targeted business network: leverage other entrepreneurs and lenders with similar interests to raise funding, find service providers, post jobs, and acquire customers.
  • Spending tracker: lenders track how the funding is spent by the entrepreneur, in order to increase peace-of-mind, transparency, and accountability.

 

About 40billion.com
40billion.com helps entrepreneurs raise funding for new businesses through friends and family rather than through traditional financial institutions. Using the Internet-based service, entrepreneurs connect with their social network – friends, family, friends of family, colleagues, and others in their communities – to raise capital. 40billion.com’s scalable platform facilitates the funding requests and transactions to make it easier for an entrepreneur to manage many funding relationships. 40billion.com is patent pending. For more information, visit http://www.40billion.com.

THE ELEVATOR discussion forums for entrepreneurs

40billion has just launched THE ELEVATOR business forums, where you can blog, post articles, and get advice/tips for entrepreneurs and funders.

THE ELEVATOR currently has 6 levels:

1. Business Basics

2. Funding Forum

3. Legal Lounge

4. Marketing Maze

5. Product Pipeline

6. Support Space

Visit www.40billion.com/elevator to start posting and reading today. New content is added daily, but feel free to add your own!

Free startup job postings, and public Raises

We’ve added new features to help you raise money and find resources for your business:

* FREE JOB POSTINGS

Looking to hire new employees or contractors for your business? Create a job posting that is visible to thousands of professionals and others seeking employment every month. It’s free!

To post a job, just sign in, click ‘Search’ and ‘Post a Job’.

* PUBLIC PROFILES

Now, you can choose whether to make your Raise (fundraising profile) private or public. By default, your Raise is private so that only invited friends and family can view it. However, you now have the option to make your Raise public so that anyone can view it (without an invitation and without signing in).

To make your Raise public, just sign in, click ‘Edit’, and uncheck the box next to ‘Make Private’.

Please continue to send us your feedback. 40billion.com was built for entrepreneurs, by entrepreneurs, so we welcome your ideas on how to make it better.

Free loan documents for business loans between friends/relatives

Now, you can formalize loans between friends and relatives for free! On 40billion.com, you can generate a customized loan document at no charge. Other websites charge up to $200 for similar services.

HOW IT WORKS

When a friend or family member views an entrepreneur’s Raise, they can offer a loan to the entrepreneur, then select the loan amount ($50 to $10,000), annual interest rate (0% or 5%), and period (12 or 24 months).

40billion.com calculates the interest and summarizes the loan terms, based on an unsecured loan with a single payment (one lump sum). 40billion.com instantly generates a professional loan document and notifies the entrepreneur via email regarding the loan offer.

The entrepreneur and lender can view the loan document online. They may print and sign the loan document, if they wish to execute a legally binding loan agreement between individuals. The lender may transfer funds to the entrepreneur by any offline method (e.g., check or cash) without worrying about extra charges and fees.

THE BENEFITS

– There is no charge, so you save up to $200 at a time when you need it most!

– Instantly generate a customized loan document to formalize a loan agreement between friends or family, without straining your relationship.

– Entrepreneurs receive affordable loans from one or many individual lenders they know; even manage 100 lenders easily.

– Lenders can offer a loan with up to 5% interest annually (a higher return than your savings account), while helping out a friend or relative starting a new business.

– Track loan payment due dates, and view/print the loan document as often as you’d like.

– Receive email notifications and reminders.

TRY IT NOW

Go to http://www.40billion.com, click ‘My Account’ and start a friends-and-family loan today.

New features to bailout small businesses and startups

In this tough economy, entrepreneurs like you are struggling to raise money to start new businesses or keep their existing businesses afloat. While big corporations are getting multi-billion dollar bailouts, who is bailing out small-business entrepreneurs? Many aspiring entrepreneurs are turning to friends and family for help during these tough times, and 40billion.com makes it easier than ever to tap into your social network and raise money for your business or idea. Here’s what we’re doing to help you, in lieu of a bailout package…

WE’VE EXTENDED YOUR RAISE

Your Raise (fundraising profile) has been extended up to one additional month, at no extra charge. Your Raise is now scheduled to end on December 13, 2008. Even if your Raise had ended, it has been reactivated with the new end date. So sign in, invite your friends and family, and start raising the money you need for your business through small loans and contributions.

WE’VE LAUNCHED NEW FEATURES

We’ve added new features and made significant improvements to help you raise money for your business. Some of these include…

* New loan document service:

Instantly generate a customized loan document to formalize a loan between friends or family, without straining your relationship.

* Posting on Facebook or MySpace:

Post links to your Raise on your Facebook or MySpace page. Increase your exposure, and allow your friends and family to access your Raise easily from your Facebook or MySpace page.

* Access to your email contact list:

Easily import your contact lists (or address books) from your existing email accounts, whether you use Yahoo, GMail, AOL, Plaxo, or Outlook. No need to type all those email addresses, when sending invitations to your friends and family.

* New default invitation messages:

You always have the ability to customize your email invitations, but we’ve made things easy for you by providing default invitation messages that are friendly and professional. Also, now when you send an invitation, the recipient does not have to sign in (or join) to view your Raise; however, they do have to sign in to offer funding and access other site features.

* New email notifications:

Now, we send you an email notification whenever you receive a loan offer or contribution, when you receive a message from someone who has viewed your Raise, and when another member grants you access to their private Raise. We do much of the work, so you can focus on your business.

…and much more.

Sign in to your account, and check out the improvements we’ve made. And with the extra time you have between now and December 13th, invite your friends and family to help you raise money for your business with a small loan or contribution towards your target.

Small business loans now available

We’re excited to announce the launch of a new lending service on 40billion.com! Now, entrepreneurs can seek loans from friends and family, and 40billion.com will create a customized loan document to formalize your loan agreements. By automatically generating a customized loan document for you, we’ve made it easier for lenders and borrowers to formalize a personal loan between friends or family members.

HOW IT WORKS

When an entrepreneur starts or edits a Raise (fundraising profile), now he can select “Loans” as a funding type (in addition to “Contributions”) to indicate that he is seeking loans towards his funding target. Then, he can invite friends and family to view the Raise and make an investment as a loan to the entrepreneur.

When a friend or family member views the entrepreneur’s Raise, she can offer a loan to the entrepreneur. She selects the loan amount ($50 to $10,000), the annual interest rate (0% or 5%), and the period (12 or 24 months).

40billion.com calculates the interest and summarizes the loan terms, based on an unsecured personal loan with a single payment (one lump sum). 40billion.com instantly generates a professional loan document.

Both the borrower and the lender can view, print, and sign the loan document as a legally binding loan agreement between the two individuals.

THE BENEFITS

– Instantly generate a customized loan document to formalize a loan agreement between friends or family, without straining your relationship.

– Entrepreneurs receive affordable loans from one or many individual lenders they know; even manage 100 lenders easily.

– Lenders earn up to 5% interest annually (a higher return than your savings account), while helping out a friend or relative with a new business.

– Track loan payment due dates, and view/print the loan document as often as you like.

– Receive email payment reminders.

TRY IT NOW

Sign in at http://www.40billion.com, raise money or fund a new business, and formalize your loan with a loan document today.

40billion.com Launches First Friends-and-Family Funding Network for Entrepreneurs

New Service Helps Entrepreneurs Raise Money Through Social Networks of Friends and Family

ATLANTA, Georgia – July 30, 2008 – 40billion.com (http://www.40billion.com) officially launched today as the first friends-and-family funding network for small-business entrepreneurs. The service enables entrepreneurs to raise capital through friends, family and others interested in helping the entrepreneur to succeed.

Unlike traditional bank loans and other person-to-person lending services, 40billion.com does not require a credit report or minimum credit score and does not allow loan interest rates as high as 36%, which many small-business entrepreneurs cannot afford. Instead, the entrepreneur can raise money from people they know in exchange for discounts that they offer to those investors who become customers.
“40billion.com is a great way for me to finance my startup,” said Dave Mack Jr., who is developing an online social network for theatre artists to connect and find work. “It helps me raise money affordably from many people I already know, and without worrying about ruining my relationships with them.”

Many businesses get started with financing from the entrepreneur’s friends and family, but it is often difficult to manage these relationships. 40billion.com allows many investors to give small amounts of money and spread the risk. Furthermore, the service provides communication tools to increase transparency between the entrepreneur and her investors.

To obtain funding, an entrepreneur simply uses 40billion.com to start a “Raise” (a fundraising profile) and invites friends, family and others in her social network to invest and contribute towards the funding target. 40billion.com makes it easier for entrepreneurs to share their business ideas with friends and relatives, who may want to invest and help out. Furthermore, 40billion.com handles all the transactions, so it is easier for an entrepreneur to manage having many investors. Raises are private, so potential investors must be invited by entrepreneurs or other investors.

 
“We are addressing a $40 billion gap in funding for small businesses, and our goal is to help all those hardworking entrepreneurs that have good ideas but don’t have the money or resources to get started,” said Cornelius Colin McNab, Founder of 40billion.com. “The economic downturn has led to a credit crunch, where banks and venture capitalists are tightening up, and entrepreneurs need alternative ways to gain access to affordable capital.”

McNab, who is an inventor with three patents and holds an MBA from MIT and a degree from Yale, is confident that his company can bridge the funding gap by allowing ordinary people to become investors. “That’s how we got started. Investors contribute as little as $50 or $100 each, but these small investments really add up. If forty friends and relatives contribute $100 each, that’s $4,000 that the entrepreneur can use to incorporate a business, build a website, print business cards, lease space for three months, file a provisional patent, and create a prototype or sample inventory.”

Currently released as a beta version, 40billion.com soon will offer more funding options (including loans), social networking features, and a unique rating system to enhance the quality of entrepreneurs and build investor confidence.

Advantages of 40billion.com

  • No credit report or sales history required
  • Multiple funding options
  • Private, invitation-only profiles
  • Exclusive entrepreneur features, e.g., live presentations online
  • Search-engine to find business resources
  • Profiles with embedded videos and PowerPoint presentations
  • Investors receive social returns, financial returns, and discounts

 

About 40billion.com

40billion.com helps entrepreneurs raise money for businesses through friends and family rather than through traditional financial institutions. Using the Internet-based service, entrepreneurs connect with their social network – friends, family, friends of family, colleagues, and others – to raise capital. 40billion.com’s scalable platform facilitates the funding requests and transactions to make it easier for an entrepreneur to manage many investors. 40billion.com is patent pending. For more information, visit http://www.40billion.com

Introducing 40Billion.com

There is a $40 billion gap in funding for startup entrepreneurs. Many small-business entrepreneurs raise initial funding for their business ideas by borrowing money and getting gifts from their friends and family. 40billion.com just makes it easier, more scalable, and more fun for entrepreneurs and their friends and family to arrange business loans and gift contributions. And it’s about time!

40billion.com provides you, the entrepreneur, with the opportunity to set up your own private fundraising machine. In it’s simplest form, it formalizes and makes scalable the process of raising funds through family and friends, making an often difficult task easy and comfortable. Once you have completed your business plan and determined how much money you need to fund your business, make a list of all your family and close friends. With the business plan uploaded to your newly-created, private profile on 40billion.com, you are ready to begin raising money through gift contributions and loans.

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