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The Future of Investing: Crowdfunding Is the Digital Evolution of Investing

KingsCrowd CEO Chris Lustrino on Revolutionizing Investment, Making Startup Financing Accessible and Efficient For Everyone

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Devin: What is your superpower?

Chris: If I had to really define my superpower, it would be resiliency. It's a willingness to go in the face of continuous and unending obstacles.

In today's episode of Superpowers for Good, I had the pleasure of hosting Chris Lustrino, the visionary Founder & CEO of KingsCrowd. Our conversation delved into the transformative power of crowdfunding and the pivotal role of digital platforms in democratizing investment opportunities. 

Chris shared an insightful perspective that resonated deeply with me: "The last frontier of investments... continue to live offline... in the paper age, which is just insane. No one lives in the analog age anymore." This statement encapsulates the crux of our discussion – the inevitable digital migration of private market investments and the pivotal role of platforms like KingsCrowd in this transformation.

KingsCrowd's mission is to streamline the startup investment process, making it more accessible and efficient for the everyday investor. By aggregating opportunities from over 80 platforms and providing comprehensive data and ratings, KingsCrowd empowers individuals to make informed decisions in a burgeoning market.

The digital evolution of investment isn't merely a convenience; it's a necessity. Just as banking and stock trading have embraced digital platforms, private market investments are poised for a similar revolution. Chris's vision of a future where all private market transactions are conducted online aligns with the broader trend of digitization that has reshaped countless industries.

As we navigate the early stages of this industry, it's clear that crowdfunding platforms like KingsCrowd are not just facilitating investment opportunities; they're laying the groundwork for a more inclusive and efficient financial ecosystem. This democratization of investment is a testament to the power of technology in leveling the playing field, allowing more individuals to participate in the economic growth driven by startups and innovative ventures.

In embracing the digital future of investing, we're not just witnessing the evolution of a market; we're participating in a movement that empowers individuals to contribute to and benefit from the success of startups and new business models. This is a thrilling time to be involved in the crowdfunding space, and I'm excited to see how platforms like KingsCrowd will continue to shape the future of investment.

AI Episode Summary

1. Devin introduces the Superpowers for Good show, emphasizing that listeners can learn how to make impactful changes by drawing lessons from successful changemakers.

2. Chris Lustrino, CEO of KingsCrowd, describes his company as a data and ratings platform for startup investors, consolidating investment opportunities from over 80 platforms into a single, efficient system, much like Bloomberg or Morning Star for the startup investment world.

3. Devin discusses the future growth of the crowdfunding space, predicting a significant increase in market size driven by ordinary investors participating in Regulation Crowdfunding (Reg CF) and Regulation A (Reg A) offerings.

4. Chris concurs, envisaging the digitization of private market investments, such as startups and real estate, and the movement away from traditional, offline transactions.

5. KingsCrowd is currently crowdfunding on Wefunder to scale revenue channels and invest in product development and AI, with a focus on achieving sustainability and reducing reliance on outside capital.

6. Chris introduces KingsCrowd Capital, an investment fund product similar to an ETF that allows passive investment in a diversified private market portfolio, with potential for AI-driven fund decisions in the future.

7. The importance of high-quality data to power AI investment tools is highlighted, with Chris suggesting that data-rich companies will be key to enabling AI efficacy in investment decision-making.

8. Devin and Chris discuss the role of AI in due diligence and the challenges that can arise from the accuracy of data, demonstrating the need for reliable, curated data sources.

9. Chris attributes his superpower to resiliency; the ability to persist in the face of challenges and setbacks, evidenced by his ability to pivot and secure funds for KingsCrowd amid a significant deal falling through.

10. Chris leaves viewers with contact information and an open invitation to reach out for discussions, expressing eagerness to engage with both supporters and skeptics of his company’s mission.


How to Develop Resiliency As a Superpower

Chris's superpower, in his own words, is resiliency. This essential quality is not just about bouncing back from setbacks but about facing continuous and unending obstacles with determination and strength. 

Resiliency is not just about surviving; it's about thriving in the face of challenges. Chris embodies this through his relentless pursuit of growth and improvement for KingsCrowd, despite numerous setbacks and obstacles. His superpower enables him to navigate the tumultuous waters of entrepreneurship, always finding a way forward, even when the path seems blocked.

An illustrative story of Chris using his superpower occurred when he was on the verge of closing an eight-figure deal for KingsCrowd, which would have transformed the company. After two years of hard work and anticipation, the deal fell through days before Thanksgiving due to circumstances beyond his control. Instead of succumbing to despair, Chris took a moment to regroup, then immediately began reaching out to investors and secured interim financing to keep the company afloat. This incident exemplifies his resiliency, showcasing his ability to quickly recover from a significant setback and keep moving forward.

To develop resiliency as a personal strength, Chris suggests embracing failure and stepping out of your comfort zone. By pushing yourself to fail, you learn to navigate and overcome adversity. This process builds a foundation of resiliency, enabling you to tackle challenges with a positive mindset and unwavering determination. Key actionable tips include:

1. Embrace failure as a learning opportunity.

2. Push beyond your comfort zone to discover your limits.

3. Cultivate a positive mindset, viewing obstacles as challenges to overcome.

4. Build a support network of peers and mentors for guidance and encouragement.

5. Practice self-reflection to understand and learn from your experiences.

By following Chris Lustrino's example and advice, you can make resiliency a skill. With practice and effort, you could make it a superpower that enables you to do more good in the world.

Remember, however, that research into success suggests that building on your own superpowers is more important than creating new ones or overcoming weaknesses. You do you!

Guest Profile

Chris Lustrino (he/him):

Founder & CEO, KingsCrowd

About KingsCrowd: KingsCrowd is quite simply the 'Bloomberg' for the crowdfunding industry.


X/Twitter Handle: @kingscrowdinc

Other URL:

Biographical Information: Founder & CEO of KingsCrowd since 2018 with a background in private equity and venture-backed startups with millions in sales since founding. Co-founder & GP of KingsCrowd Capital and formerly founder of SIC, one of the first alt investing blogs (acq. 18)

X/Twitter Handle: @simpleinnovativ


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