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This indicative roadmap is provided for information purposes only and is subject to change. It does not prejudge the final decision of the Commission on whether this initiative will be pursued or on its final content and structure.

A. Context and problem definition

(1) What is the political context of the initiative? (2) How does it relate to past and possible future initiatives, and to other EU policies? (3) What ex-post analysis of existing policy has been carried out? What results are relevant for this initiative? While currently a marginal source of financing, crowdfunding is a rapidly growing new form of financing where a large number of people contribute money directly, or through a crowdfunding platform, to a campaign that is typically advertised over the internet. The Commission has taken some initiatives on crowdfunding in 2013 in the form of soft measures. The Entrepreneurship 2020 Action Plan included awareness-raising, facilitating web entrepreneurs' access to finance, and calling on Member States to adapt their financial legislation to accommodate crowdfunding. This Communication aims to have a clear overview of what EU level action would add value for which crowdfunding models. What are the main problems which this initiative will address? Crowdfunding is gaining popularity with people and entrepreneurs. It offers promising benefits as a complementary source of financing for the real economy in general and social projects in specific. But crowdfunding also lends itself to certain risks. Depending on the business model it can raise the risks of fraud, insufficient IPR protection, misleading advertising. Realising both the potential benefits and downsides, some Member States start taking action to regulate certain forms of crowdfunding under their national laws. These rules may not be necessarily compatible with one another for all forms of crowdfunding, such as financial forms, which means that crowdfunding projects might not benefit from a single market, unless if they comply with higher requirements of EU financial legislation. Given the particular features of crowdfunding (calls to the public collecting smaller target amounts in the form of small contributions form a large number of individuals) EU legal requirements that would grant market access to these campaigns might not be tailored for crowdfunding. Who will be affected by it? The Communication will not imply any immediate legal changes, so it is likely to have mainly "soft" and indirect impacts. Everyone who might raise funds through crowdfunding will likely be positively affected: entrepreneurs, SMEs, start-ups, social entrepreneurs, and artists are among the possible beneficiaries. Contributors to crowdfunding campaigns would potentially benefit from better protection. Is EU action justified on grounds of subsidiarity? Why can Member States not achieve the objectives of the proposed action sufficiently by themselves? Can the EU achieve the objectives better? Whether Member States can achieve an optimal policy framework for crowdfunding will be checked also by the public consultation exercise.

B. Objectives of the initiative

What are the main policy objectives? Better access to finance, Facilitated market access across the EU Reducing illegal behaviours and fraud on contributors to crowdfunding Create a framework of a sustainable model of crowdfunding that gains contributors' trust Do the objectives imply developing EU policy in new areas? No

C. Options
(1) What are the policy options (including exemptions/adapted regimes e.g. for SMEs) being considered? (2) What legislative or 'soft law' instruments could be considered? (3) How do the options respect the proportionality principle? An on-going public consultation is gathering information about a number of soft law instruments including selfregulation, awareness raising, sharing best practices and coordination of national self- or public regulation. The planned Communication will summarise the results of this public consultation as a stock-taking exercise. It will not commit to any future legal measures.

D. Initial assessment of impacts

What are the benefits and costs of each of the policy options? Not yet known. Could any or all of the options have significant impacts on (i) simplification, (ii) administrative burden and (iii) on relations with other countries, (iv) implementation arrangements? And (v) could any be difficult to transpose for certain Member States? No. (1) (2) (3) (4) Will an IA be carried out for this initiative and/or possible follow-up initiatives? When will the IA work start? When will you set up the IA Steering Group and how often will it meet? What DGs will be invited?

No. The Communication will not announce any action that would commit the European Commission and have significant impact on stakeholders, on administrative burden, on the environment, or on third countries. An impact assessment would be launched for any possible follow-up measures to the Communication. (1) Is any option likely to have impacts on the EU budget above 5m? (2) If so, will this IA serve also as an ex-ante evaluation, as required by the Financial Regulation? If not, provide information about the timing of the ex-ante evaluation. No

E. Evidence base, planning of further work and consultation

(1) What information and data are already available? Will existing IA and evaluation work be used? (2) What further information needs to be gathered, how will this be done (e.g. internally or by an external contractor), and by when? (3) What is the timing for the procurement process & the contract for any external contracts that you are planning (e.g. for analytical studies, information gathering, etc.)? (4) Is any particular communication or information activity foreseen? If so, what, and by when? A public consultation gathers stakeholders' views (from 03.10.2013 to 31.12.2013). This consultation exercise will feed into the Communication. An external study will be launched by DG CNECT to explore self-regulation and possible further legal issues. Its start is foreseen for the first half of 2014. This study would feed into any possible further follow-up measures to the Communication. Which stakeholders & experts have been or will be consulted, how, and at what stage? An open public consultation of 12 weeks to gather all stakeholders' views through an on-line survey http://ec.europa.eu/internal_market/consultations/2013/crowdfunding/index_en.htm.