Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Non-Alcoholic Craft Beer Maker Hits Fundraising Target, Signs Deal with Total Wine & More

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Non-Alcoholic Craft Beer Maker Hits Fundraising Target, Signs Deal with Total Wine & More

Article excerpt

WellBeing Brewing Co., the local craft brewer of nonalcoholic beers that was the first to try the St. Louis Economic Development Partnership's new crowdfunding platform called Nvsted, has reached its funding goal and is now looking to hit its stretch goal.

WellBeing Brewing hit its $125,000 goal in about two months. With 21 days still remaining in the campaign -- and about $132,000 in committed investment from more than 40 individuals -- WellBeing executives are now targeting $200,000, which will be used mostly for marketing purposes. The campaign ends July 6.

Jeff Stevens, a former beer industry marketer and founder of WellBeing, said the campaign picked up steam a few weeks ago after WellBeing started more aggressively marketing its fundraising efforts.

For the Partnership, which announced the platform in April, it's a key victory in proving the viability of the concept that was made possible by the 2012 JOBS Act, which directed the SEC to write regulations allowing securities-based crowdfunding.

"It's always great to have that validation," said Partnership CEO Sheila Sweeney. "We anticipated it would be something the community would embrace and it would be something helpful to the startup community trying to grow in St. Louis. But we were surprised by the number of investors that came nationwide."

Sweeney said a majority of investors were from the St. Louis area, with pockets of investors found in Colorado, Michigan and Minnesota. The largest investor on a dollar basis, she said, came from Georgia.

Nvsted is available to both accredited investors -- wealthy individuals who make more than $200,000 annually and have a net worth of over $1 million, excluding their residence -- and those with more modest incomes.

Sweeney said approximately 10 other startups are in the process of filling out the regulatory paperwork needed to hop on the Nvsted platform. …

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