Building the next generation shareholder toolkit for coops

Crowdfunded equity solutions are expanding in the current digital era, right now with the acceleration provided by blockchain, decentralized technologies and ICO campaigns. The possibilities are emerging and the public have different kind of interests.

But still, many sectors do not want to apply the capitalist principle of `1 share = 1 vote`, and do not want to depend on volatility of the exchanging values in private markets.

In this context Bank of the Commons is committed to enable a platform for democratic equity crowdfunding and stability based trading.

Coopshares aims to be a decentralized platform for massive use for buying, exchanging and selling tokens of democratic collective ownership, such as cooperatives, land, houses, art pieces, local currencies, amongst others.

With this plan, Coopshares will enable the democratization of the token economy, making it much more interesting for cooperative and non profit sectors.

How it works

A share is defined as the unit of participation.

The amount you choose to invest in a token will form your share of the social capital of this venture. The total of social shares capital is used to fund the project. The decisions of the project are taken democratically by `one person, one vote` principle.

With each token, the holders will also be able to buy or sell shares between themselves. And in that way, they would improve the liquidity of the shares in coops and other democratic owned structures, what is usually a problematic issue in these sectors.

The platform is applying blockchain technology solutions for ventures who share democratic economic principles:

One member, one vote.

When a coop grows in social capital, the number of shares grow, rather than the value of these shares (1 share = 1 Euro, for example). When it`s social capital decreases, the number of shares goes down, not the value of these shares (1 share = 1 Euro, still). This means that democratic tokens can not be speculative assets, which is the way things are at the moment with cryptocurrencies.

The platform will facilitate a full customized experience, for each collective venture to have their own relation with different kind of investors and participants. For example, in one case investors could have a creditor relation, with a time to convert back shares in cash, and without participation in governance. When in other case, investors would be full members at all the effects.

Development Path

The platform will be a composition of different tools that already are being developed with collaboration of different teams.

- FairChains, which is a fork of omnilayer with the super ecological blockchain with Proof of Cooperation. It is developed by FairCoin dev team, already available.

- Social wallet (European funded development by Dyne foundation), will be adapted for the needs of Coopshares.

- Distributed backend for membership, based in the ActivityPub concept. This is being done by OCE p2p team.

- Custom apps for designing tokens and joining campaigns in Coopshares platform.

We are starting now putting the building blocks together for a coopshares testnet. Activities are co-ordinated in the coopshares chat group.

Legal requirements

Bank of the Commons is connected with a cooperative in Spain and another one in Italy. A foundation being developed in Switzerland will ensure the compliance needed for institutional investors.

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