Marks Industry Milestone

The real estate crowdfunding platform has become the first in the U.S. to fully fund $200 million.

By Barbra Murray, Contributing Editor

Jilliene Helman,

Jilliene Helman,

Los has hit the big 2-0-0. Three years after its launch, the online commercial real estate crowdfunding marketplace has surpassed $200 million in funded equity and debt transactions.

It’s a two-way street. gives individual investors the opportunity to invest in commercial real estate and it provides professional real estate players simpler access to capital. With membership now exceeding 80,000 and spanning all 50 states, the crowdfunding platform has backed more than 350 properties.

“Our goal has always been to democratize commercial real estate by enabling a new generation of investors to participate in real estate opportunities that were historically difficult to access,” Jilliene Helman, CEO, said in a prepared statement. “Reaching the $200 million mark at this stage shows we’re continually following through on this goal and growing as a company.”

The Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act of 2012 opened the door for crowdfunding platforms in the U.S., and there’s been no turning back. According to a study conducted by the Cambridge Centre for Alternative Finance, the Polsky Center at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, KPMG and others, real estate crowdfunding in the Americas has since mushroomed, growing in market volume from approximately $44.3 million in 2013 to $138.2 million in 2014. And 2015’s volume of roughly $483.8 million marked a year-over-year increase of a whopping 250 percent.

Helman expects crowdfunding to go mainstream within the next five years. “I believe crowdfunding is the future of real estate investing for individual investors,” Helman told Commercial Property Executive. “It will be fascinating to see the first billion-dollar real estate asset manager who raised 100 percent of their capital on the Internet.”

This online real estate alternative financing model is on fire and’s success is evidence of the growth. In addition to passing the $200 million mark, the company reached $40 million in distributions of principal and returns. “The $40 million in returned funds is as important in my mind as our total invested dollars, if not more. Creating value for our investors is what we thrive on. At the end of the day, it’s all about them,” Helman added in the statement.

And just where will be five years from now? Will the company have broken the $500 million mark? Despite’s enviable track record since inception, Helman isn’t making any predictions. “Frankly, time will tell. We are not looking to optimize for volume; however, we first look to optimize for deal flow that we think makes sense to finance,” she told CPE.

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