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Ficus Capital executive director Abdullah Hidayat

A way to balance risks and rewards is not to put all your ‘‘eggs into one basket.’’

Diversify your investment portfolio to accumulate wealth.

This is essentially important in current challenging times, given that the convergence of inflation and recession is making it tougher for investors to invest for quick gains.

Besides the traditional investment instruments to accumulate wealth such as stocks/shares, bonds, unit trust, fixed deposit and real estate, equity crowdfunding (ECF) is an option for retail investors.

ECF normally invests in unlisted companies that are shielded by day-to-day stock price fluctuations and in current times where markets are volatile, a report said.

ECF has long been an option for startups and small businesses to source funding from the public.

A word of caution from experts in the ECF industry is to only invest in online platforms registered with the Securities Commission (SC). There are 10 of such platforms in Malaysia.

There is no denying that many early investors into growth companies have been rewarded handsomely.

“Our advice to all investors is to spread out their investment and have a diversified portfolio. As part of their diversification, consider putting funds into a few issuers rather than just one,’’ Pitch Platforms Sdn Bhd (pitchIN) co-founder Sam Shafie said.




He added that the “potential returns for fast-growing ECF issuers are typically from two times onwards, and the most successful ones will generate far more than two times.’’

Ficus Capital executive director Abdullah Hidayat said the return from ECF investment usually comes in two ways.

It is either price gain – whereby the investors manage to sell their investment at a higher price than the purchase price – or/and in the form of dividends.

When investing into ECF, be prepared to wait for returns. Take a long-term view.

“Successful ECF investments typically generate very high returns. Patient investors who invest in the right ECF issuers stand to gain handsomely.

“Some investments will take three to five years and others a bit longer to realise the returns on their investment,’’ Sam said.

As to how much you can invest in a startup or small business depends on the companies that are sourcing for funding. It is up to them to decide the minimum investment that they will allow investors to invest into their companies.

Sam said the SC’s recommendation is that investors invest the maximum based on their category i.e. retail investors – up to RM5,000 per company and RM50,000 per year.

For angel investors, it should not be more than RM500,000 and there is no limit for sophisticated investors.

Abdullah believes investors that invest via crowdfunding (CF) usually have no control and no influence on the valuations of the company they are investing in.

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