Projects are ventures that generate revenue and produce environmental and/or social returns. Think a local grocery store in an area with low access to healthy food, affordable workspaces for emerging artists, or the revitalization of a historic theatre in your neighborhood.
Project Sponsors hold the vision for the project. They build a team, identify a site, structure the business model and develop the impact thesis for their project. They are looking for financing to get their project off the ground.
Project Investors are the investors in projects. They are interested in investing their money in projects that produce financial returns, but also contribute toward making society better.
Through rabble, investors can invest in projects that they believe in. If the funding target is met, the sponsor receives financing and begins work on the project. If the project does not meet its funding target, all funds are returned to backers.
If the project does well, investors earn income from the project.
All projects are investments – meaning that you can lose all of your investment if the venture does not succeed. Please consult your financial advisor before backing any project listed on rabble.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is rabble?
Rabble is an impact investing platform that connects people with projects that matter. We use new rules passed by Congress that enable anyone to invest. People can invest in projects that align with their values. From revitalizing low-income neighborhoods, closing the gender gap or reducing carbon emissions, all rabble projects aim to deliver financial returns and social and environmental impact.*
We take pride in offering moral and financial support to projects with impactful and innovative business models. But it doesn’t stop there—we work closely with qualified teams to refine financial models and enhance the social and environmental impact of rabble projects. Our goal is to help teams receive mission-aligned capital and get the support they need to get their ideas off the ground.
*What we call “complete returns.”
What exactly does rabble do?
We leverage new regulations to make it simple and straightforward for you to invest in projects that you believe in. By identifying opportunities, performing due diligence, selecting impact projects and structuring and managing the financial offering we connect conscious capital with serious opportunities.
How It Works
Rabble receives applications from teams that seek capital for projects that improve communities. Rabble reviews each application and approves those that meet financial, social, environmental and economic impact criteria. We also look at the track record of each team, at their personal experience and collective potential to bring their ideas to life. We only approve those that align best with backers’ goals.
Then, we help structure and facilitate investment into the project via our web platform. As the venture produces revenue, we ensure that investors receive their portion of return. We also measure the impact of each project and allow you to track your contribution.
How do backers use rabble?
To get started, choose a project that speaks to you–one that creates impact in an area that you have a passion for. This could be a project that supports education in a city you grew up in, a project that reduces carbon in the environment, or one that restores a cultural landmark in your neighborhood. If the project aligns with your financial goals and the opportunity is open to you,* you can invest.
Once the project’s funding target is met, the project team receives funding and commences project development. In return, backers receive shares in the project proportional with their investment. If the target is not met, funds are returned to investors.
By investing in a project on the rabble platform, you become a co-owner of an asset or project. You will receive a portion of the income that the asset/project generates, such as rental revenue or revenue from energy production; income earned is tied to only to the project the backer invested in.
*Is open for investment in your State of Residence and/or you meet the appropriate Accreditation Status.
How do backers earn?
Investors receive dividend income from operations of the project they invest in. These will be distributed to your account on a quarterly basis after the project begins operation.
Investments in each project are separate and are not commingled with other projects – which means that your returns depend solely on the success of the specific project that you invested in.
After a pre-determined period specific to each project, the investment may be exited; if the project did well, you will earn additional income from the sale of your share plus appreciation.
How does rabble choose projects?
We receive applications from firms that seek capital for for-profit, impact-focused ventures in the United States. We conduct a thorough evaluation of every project to ensure financial and engineering feasibility. Solid financial returns are, however, just one piece of the puzzle.
Like you, we’re interested in making an impact beyond a single bottom line. Projects that deliver complete returns – including financial, environmental and/or social – are exactly the types of projects we like supporting. Therefore, we quantify the environmental and social benefit of each proposed project.
As a final part of our evaluation, we also consider the team’s experience and track record. Strong projects require strong teams, and we look for those with the greatest potential for success.
What kind of projects does rabble list?
Currently, rabble lists projects that focus on the following three categories:
Expanding access to food that is affordable, healthy and locally grown.
Examples include: Industrial scale urban vegetable farms, grocery co-ops in low access areas, ocean farms.
Establishing spaces that allow artists, craftspeople and innovators to fuel their livelihoods.
Examples include: Artist workspaces / educational spaces, museums, performance venues.
Creating mixed use spaces that make cities stronger and neighborhoods more vibrant.
Examples include: Net zero housing, creative reuse of abandoned warehouses that serve community needs.
What do founders use funds for?
Project Founders use funds for one of the following:
Property Acquisition, Rehabilitation & Development
Examples include: Adaptive reuse and historic preservation of a building or space, extensive to minimal renovations to a abandoned building, new construction on a vacant or new space.
Business or Social Enterprise opening or expanding; tied to a specific physical space
Funds may cover property acquisition, build-out and working capital for the enterprise.
What impact do projects create?
Rabble only funds projects that create a positive impact.* To be eligible, a completed project must: make an important product or service more affordable, sustainable, or accessible to its clients, and/or improve the built environment in a manner that removes blight, rehabilitates under-utilized properties, or preserves a historic space.
Restoration: Removing a problematic structure and transforming a blighted or vacant space to productive use.
Preservation: Revitalizing a space of cultural importance to a community
Environment: Incorporating renewable energy and other net zero designs into built environment projects.
Increased Access: A business expanding access to a valuable service, such as groceries, housing or medical care; the firm makes a product / service more affordable, closer and/or of higher quality.
*Rabble has developed a comprehensive definition of impact. Stay tuned, we’ll be posting our definition and methodology soon.
How is rabble different?
We turn the standard model of investing on its head. Rather than raising capital from a few wealthy investors, we divide ownership of a project into hundreds of affordable shares.
Although there are channels that allow investors to purchase securities in pro-impact companies, to support creative endeavors via donation, and to invest in real assets today, our platform combines the best of all options into a single investor solution.
We allow direct investment in “real assets with impact” combining innovative ideas, impact-driven initiatives and attractive rates of return for all backers.
What are the fees?
If a project meets its funding target, rabble will charge the project founder a one-time project placement fee. Fees are not charged to project backers.
Who is rabble?
We are a NYC-based team of passionate people with experience in impact investing, cleantech finance, private equity, sustainability, engineering and investment management. To us, investing is about more than money—it’s about creating a stronger economy, environment, and society. We’re dreamers and doers who share an ambition to create the world we all want.
Who can I talk to at rabble?
Our team is here to answer all of your questions about rabble, our projects and the investment structures we use. Reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you don’t have a specific question, but you want to join the conversation, follow us on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook @wetherabble.
Who can invest?
Everyone. Well, almost everyone. rabble leverages new regulations that make investments open to all US-based residents.*
Some projects will only be open in a handful of states. As long as the project is available for investment in your State of Residence, you should be able to invest.**
*At this time these regulations don’t allow non US-based investors to participate. However, this might be something that is possible at a future date.
**Some projects will only be available to accredited investors.
What will backers actually own?
Backers own equity or debt securities, depending on the project.
If the project is an equity investment, backers will own a portion of the company that operates the project. This means that backers are entitled to a portion of the revenue that the project produces based on the terms of the investment.
If the project is a debt investment, backers will own securities that entitle them to a pre-determined rate of return based on what they invested.
Potential investors should consult their own financial and tax advisors prior to making any investment.
How do backers make money?
Investments are made in specific projects that are separate from all other projects and from rabble. As a backer, your returns will depend only on the success of the project that you invest in; we suggest that you perform extensive due diligence and consult your financial and tax advisors before making an investment.
For equity investments, backers receive dividend income from operations of the project they invest in—think rental income from a tenant or revenue from the operation of a restaurant.
In most projects, the asset will be sold after a pre-specified time (~3 to 5 years); the proceeds from the sale including appreciation will be paid to all backers proportional with their initial investment.
In some cases, project founders may make it possible for backers to own shares for a longer period of time—providing a continuous stream of income as long as the project does well. In these instances, project founders may exercise an option to buy back shares from backers at a premium at an agreed upon time in the future.
For debt investments, backers receive a pre-determined rate of return from the project founder after the project kicks off. These investments will typically pay back investors in 2 to 5 years’ time plus return.
Please note, rabble does not offer investment advice or recommendations and does not recommend or otherwise suggest that any investor make an investment in a particular company, or that any company offer securities to a particular investor. Potential investors should consult their own financial and tax advisors prior to making any investment.
Where do my funds go after I invest?
After you invest in a rabble project, your funds will be handled by a third-party payment processing firm called Synapse. Synapse only withdraws funds from your rabble wallet or bank account once the project has met its minimum fundraising goal. Then, your investment, along the rest of the money the project has raised through rabble, is transferred into a protected fund that invests directly into the project. The project receives these funds once they complete the key milestones outlined in the project details.
At no point will funds from other projects be commingled with yours, which means that your returns depend solely on the success of the specific project that you invested in.
What do you fund?
Innovative, impactful, and non-traditional business models. Not all sources of financing understand the new business models the world needs for a better tomorrow. We do. We consider innovative and impactful business models and work with you to tailor them to meet the goals of backers.
The underlying asset a founder seeks to fund may, but need not be, a real asset (e.g. land, building). However, all projects must be tied to a specific location and physical space (e.g. build-out of a formerly abandoned warehouse).
Capital raised through rabble may be used for a broad spectrum of development intensity, ranging from new construction to significant renovation to building preservation.
Right now, projects must be based in the United States. Projects in any US community are eligible; however, our sourcing efforts are currently focused in New York, Baltimore, Detroit and Philadelphia.
What are the advantages to raising capital via rabble?
Get the financial and moral support you need to bring your innovative ideas to life.
Rabble support: We value your innovative, impactful and non-traditional projects. We’ll help you gain traction by refining your business model to complement the goals and values of rabble backers.
Community support: Project investors have an active interest in helping your project succeed. Beyond a donation, our investors are your neighbors, will become your patrons and, eventually, the beneficiaries of the positive impact you create.
Tailored financing: We work with project founders to refine the financial structure, help strengthen your impact model, provide engineering advice and guide your marketing efforts during fundraising. We’re here to give you the support you need to set you up for success. We offer patient, mission-aligned capital that is tailored to each project. Our capital may be less costly and more efficient to attain than traditional equity or debt sources.
Teams with potential:
When evaluating projects, we consider the team’s experience and track record, not just the business model. Strong projects require strong teams, and we look for those with the greatest potential for success.
Complete returns: For us it’s not just about financial returns. Like you, we’re interested in making impact beyond a single bottom line. Projects that deliver complete returns – including financial, environmental and/or social – are exactly the types of projects we like supporting.
What financial structures does rabble offer?
Rabble tailors the terms for each project. We base the terms on a number of factors including: the return that backers will likely require in order to fund the project, taking into account the financial fundamentals, project-related risk, and impact expectations.
How does rabble determine the rate of return?
Rabble works with project founders to determine the best financial structure to finance each project. Right now, rabble may help facilitate investment via a preferred equity arrangement, a senior loan, or a blended senior and mezzanine loan.
How does rabble find projects?
We are always on the lookout for high impact, socially responsible investment opportunities. Potential projects come in from many sources: from shovel-ready projects pitched to us by developers to creative community members dreaming big.
Have an idea for a project in your community?
Reach out to us here
How does rabble make money?
Rabble earns revenue from a one-time project placement fee charged to the project. The fee covers project structuring and financing, asset management and governance oversight, and use of the rabble technology platform.
Rabble is not a broker-dealer or a funding portal and receives no transaction-based compensation.
Do backers have voting rights?
At this time, backers who invest in projects do not have voting rights. Rabble structures securities in projects to preserve investors’ financial and impact interest in the project separate from backers
What if you do not raise your funding target?
Rabble and the project lead will jointly determine two figures: the tipping point and the investment cap. Only projects that meet their respective “tipping point” will receive investor capital; investment is offered on an “all or nothing” basis up to this target. Projects that do not reac the tipping point will not receive any of the capital and funds will be returned to the backers.