The New Face of Micro-Investing
The micro-investing industry went through two major shifts this past weekend.
The first was the premiere of Meet the Drapers, a “crowdfunding reality TV series” that lets viewers invest in products and companies right from their living rooms. Think Shark Tank meets Kickstarter meets QVC—that’s what Meet the Drapers is all about. Viewers can learn about a startup on the show and make an investment through the crowdfunding site Republic. Investment amounts can be as little as $10, depending on the nature of the campaign.
Meet the Drapers is exclusively on Sony Entertainment Television, a paid channel on DISH network. The first episode premiered yesterday, and the first season will include 13 episodes.
Another change in the world of micro-investing comes from a new partnership between PayPal and Acorns Grow. Select PayPal users can now link their Acorn accounts to their PayPal accounts to transfer money, monitor investments, and withdraw money as needed. This service will be available to all PayPal users in early 2018.
Unlike crowdfunding sites that involve small investments in specific companies, Acorns allows users to invest in a diverse portfolio of over 7,000 stocks and bonds. The basic program is set up to “invest spare change.” Acorns rounds up the value of each purchase made on a card to the nearest dollar and invests the extra change. Users can also set up recurring or one-time investments to increase their earnings.
Acorns has different pricing structures based on the amount of money a person invests. Programs start at $1 per month, and accounts with over $5,000 cost 0.25% per year. College students are eligible for free Acorns accounts if they use a valid .edu email address. The free account is good for four years.