More than £1700 an hour is being raised in the UK through crowdfunding, according to figures from the Crowdfunding Centre, which is now calling for greater government support for the burgeoning alternative finance market.
Since the beginning of the year more than 260 equity and rewards projects have been launched, attracting pledges of around £5.7 million. Successful projects have raised £9500 each - a total of £2.4 million.
The numbers may be tiny but with many small- and medium-sized businesses struggling to raise capital from traditional high street lenders, the government has been keen to talk up alternatives.
Last month it handed £40 million to peer-to-peer lender Funding Circle to distribute to business and the industry is expected to receive a further boost in its efforts to crack the mainstream later this year when it comes under the watch of the Financial Conduct Authority.
However, Karen Darby, CEO, CrowdMission, says: "Talk is cheap. I'd like to see this government proactively supporting the UK crowdfunding sector with a programme to increase education and awareness, an even playing field for the tax treatment of crowdfunded investments and a supportive and effective legislator.
"A bit of hard cash to co-invest in young, high growth businesses wouldn't go amiss either."