The other day I was thinking - "If Barrack Obama can go straight to the public for fund raising, why can't businesses do the same?"
Raising capital to fund the next growth stage has always been fraught with problems. Finding amenable angel investors, an IPO, selling off equity to some industry insiders. All part of the complicated process of getting access to capital.
And these have only compounded recently as credit has dried up.
For example, gold mining companies haven't earned money like this for over a decade at least. Yet they cannot get credit and have to cut expansion works out of OPEX or sell off equity.
Unfortunately, as always happens, I was about 6 months behind the curve with my brilliant insight. (Thats how my Facebook idea was stolen - dammit!)
have a look at GrowthWire which seems to be set up for this purpose. I haven't played around with it too much but it seems to be a marketplace where high value investors can match up with projects from $50,000 to $50 million.
I do know that it is run by an ex-high flier on the Australian Stock Exchange. (If I read that right)
Good luck to them, it seems like a good idea.