- Corporate Law and M&A , Finance and Banking
- Pieter Dierckx - Leo Peeters
- crowdfunding , alternatieve financing platform , start-up PIVAK , start-up , tax shelter , FSMA
On 27 May 2016, the Federal Government approved the preliminary bill on various provisions in the Council of Ministers.Amongst others, this bill is intended to regulate “alternative funding services” and develop and permit the introduction of a financial framework for crowdfunding platforms (funding vehicles), start-up funds and private start-up PRIVAKs.
These structures will make it possible to reap the full benefit of the tax relief decided last July.
The Programme Act of 10 August 2015 includes various measures which permit private capital to be mobilised in favour of start-up companies (companies under four years old).
This relates to:
These tax benefits assume the establishment of the status of the crowdfunding platform.In this framework, private individuals may benefit from tax relief on personal income tax amounting to 30 or 45 % (of the invested capital), if they invest directly in the capital of start-up companies. A company may raise a maximum of 250,000 Euros in this manner, over the period of its existence. The investor may invest 100,000 EUR per annum. The tax shelter applies to investments made from 1 July 2015.
Tax relief is currently not possible for investments via a crowdfunding platform or start-up fund. A number of formalities relating to the start-up fund, and the recognition of alternative funding platforms still required clarification. So enforcement of the measures provided by the aforesaid Programme Act entailed the Federal Government taking the necessary steps to place these crowdfunding platforms under the supervision of the Financial Services and Markets Authority (FSMA).
The draft texts, which were approved on 27 May 2016 by the Federal Government in the Council of Ministers, now permit the introduction of platforms which enable investors to benefit from tax relief.In particular, the bill relates to the following aspects:
In concrete terms, henceforth (after the Act comes into force), four forms of investment will benefit from the tax relief, namely:
Please note that the tax relief is non-reimbursable and non-transferrable, and neither is it a tax credit, such as, for instance, the Win-Win Loan.
At this time, there is only a government bill, which is still subject to amendment. As soon as more definitive texts become available, we will explore the new regulatory (financial) framework for crowdfunding platforms (funding vehicles), start-up funds and private start-up PRIVAKs in more depth.