On 5 and 6 April 2022 the BLUE CROWDFUNDING Symposium was organised by EUROROWD and the Chamber of Commerce of Cyprus in Nicosia, Cyprus within the framework of Interreg Med Blue Crowdfunding. This 2-day workshop gathered a variety of stakeholders, including , public authorities, SMEs, and business support institutions, to explore crowdfunding opportunities for the Mediterranean region.
The event highlighted the need of actions that encourage a sustainable economy. Thanks to the interventions of the speakers, we were able to observe how the cost of inaction is much higher than the cost of carrying out actions aimed at alleviating the situation derived from the pollution of the Mediterranean Sea and the climate crisis. Therefore, the event made clear how crowdfunding can be an efficient tool for public authorities to implement and support campaigns through Match-Funding mechanisms. This enables them to obtain not only economic benefits but also additional advantages such as visibility, marketing, the creation of a customer base, or an increased sense of “ownership” for the investors.
EUROCROWD as an official partner of the project was represented by several members of the team that gave the assistants the opportunity to learn more about how crowdfunding can boost companies from the blue economy sector. In addition, an explanation of the EU and Cypriot Regulatory Framework of crowdfunding was given, finishing with an in-depth training about how to offer technical assistance to platforms or project holders. In this way we tried to ensure participants a wider knowledge about the possibilities and goals that they can achieve through crowdfunding.
During the Symposium, the experts showed us different successful campaigns developed within the project, as a very good example of how crowdfunding is, in fact, a useful tool for blue economy that has a huge potential to contribute to long-term job growth, food security, renewable energy supply, circular economy, and sustainable mobility.
Furthermore, CitizEE project partners, clarified how energy efficiency is gaining importance in combating climate change, as one third of the EU's CO2 emissions are caused by inefficiency in the building sector. The challenge ahead needs new innovative funding schemes to bring more private investment onboard. CitizEE aimed to better understand how citizens financing schemes might look like and how they could be integrated with existing frameworks such as Investment Platforms using European Fund for Strategic Investments under Horizon 2020. During their intervention, four pilot cases from Belgium, Croatia, Lithuania and Portugal were presented in which relevant energy efficiency activities were co-financed with citizens, private and EU funds. Both success and obstacles were outlined and in an expert panel further assessed. Legal and market hurdles were outlined. The panel concluded that while there was a general need, the overall technical requirements of Investment Platforms and the limited knowledge of many authorities about citizen finance remains a major hurdle for a large scale roll out across Europe.
If this event has captured your interest and you want to learn more about crowdfunding in the Blue Economy sector and our initiatives, you cannot miss anything about the international crowdfunding and match-funding workshop celebrated in the framework of the project on 11, 12 and 13 May in Napoli.