Canada: Le Financement Participatif Des Entreprises En Démarrage À L'Ère Du 2.0

Last Updated: June 24 2015
Article by Bruno Caron

Le 14 mai 2015, les autorités réglementaires en matière de valeurs mobilières de la Colombie Britannique, de la Saskatchewan, du Manitoba, du Québec, du Nouveau Brunswick et de la Nouvelle-Écosse ont adopté, au moyen de décisions générales locales substantiellement harmonisées, une dispense de l'obligation d'établir un prospectus et une dispense d'inscription pour le financement participatif des entreprises en démarrage (ci-après la « dispense pour entreprises en démarrage »).  Cette nouvelle dispense de prospectus vise les émetteurs non assujettis qui en sont à la toute première étape du démarrage de leur entreprise. Il est important de noter que la « dispense de prospectus pour financement participatif » plus complexe proposée en mars 2014 qui visait des émetteurs plus avancés n'a pas été adoptée pour le moment et qu'elle fait toujours l'objet d'étude de la part de plusieurs organismes de réglementation des valeurs mobilières au Canada.

La dispense pour entreprises en démarrage permettra à un émetteur dont le siège est situé dans l'une des six provinces participantes d'obtenir un maximum de 250 000 $ à deux reprises au cours d'une même année civile au moyen de l'émission de capitaux propres (actions ordinaires et actions privilégiées non convertibles), de titres convertibles en capitaux propres, de titres de créances non convertibles liés à un taux d'intérêt fixe ou variable ou une part de société en commandite. La dispense pour entreprises en démarrage ne s'applique pas aux fonds d'investissement et les porteurs de titres actuels de l'émetteur ne peuvent se prévaloir de cette dispense pour se décharger de leur participation dans l'émetteur.

La dispense pour entreprises en démarrage prévoit un investissement ouvert à tous à concurrence de 1 500 $ par placement offert par un émetteur.

Un émetteur qui souhaite obtenir du financement participatif aux termes de la dispense pour entreprises en démarrage doit le faire par l'intermédiaire d'un portail de financement participatif.  L'émetteur devra également mettre à disposition sur le portail un document d'offre comprenant des renseignements sur l'émetteur, sur l'entreprise, sur la direction, sur l'utilisation projeté du produit, sur tout financement déjà demandé par l'émetteur en vertu de la dispense pour entreprise en démarrage, sur les frais et commissions facturés à l'émetteur, sur les facteurs de risque ainsi que sur l'information que l'émetteur entend présenter aux investisseurs après l'obtention du financement et sur la fréquence à laquelle il entend présenter cette information. Le document d'offre doit également indiquer le montant minimal de financement.

Une offre faite en vertu de la dispense pour entreprises en démarrage peut demeurer ouverte pendant un maximum de 90 jours. La dispense pour entreprises en démarrage s'articule autour d'un modèle « tout ou rien », ce qui signifie que, si l'investisseur n'obtient pas le montant minimal en 90 jours, l'ensemble des fonds amassés devra être retourné à chacun des investisseurs potentiels.

La revente de titres émis en vertu de la dispense pour entreprises en démarrage sera assujettie à l'article 2.5 du Règlement 45-102 sur la revente de titres. Cela signifie que ces titres feront l'objet d'un délai de conservation indéfini, à moins d'être revendu au moyen d'un prospectus, d'une dispense de prospectus ou que l'émetteur ne devienne subséquemment un émetteur assujetti dans au moins une province ou un territoire du Canada et qu'il préserve ce statut pendant au moins quatre mois.

La dispense pour entreprises en démarrage contient certains changements par rapport au projet de règlement proposé en mars 2014. Premièrement, les fonds recueillis auprès des investisseurs par l'intermédiaire du portail de financement n'ont plus à être conservés par une tierce partie. Le portail de financement doit détenir les actifs des investisseurs séparément de ses biens, dans une fiducie à leur profit et, dans le cas d'espèces, auprès d'une institution financière canadienne. En d'autres termes, cela signifie que les opérateurs du portail conserveront et protégeront les sommes destinées à l'investissement jusqu'à ce que l'émetteur obtienne le montant minimal.

Deuxièmement, un investisseur participant à un placement effectué au moyen de la dispense pour entreprise en démarrage jouit maintenant du droit contractuel de résoudre sa souscription dans les 48 heures suivant celle-ci ou la transmission par le portail de financement, d'un avis indiquant à l'investisseur que le document d'offre a été modifié.

Sous le régime de la dispense pour entreprises en démarrage, l'opérateur du portail de financement n'aura pas à être inscrit comme courtier en vertu des lois en matière de valeurs mobilières au Canada, mais son siège social doit être situé dans un territoire de compétence canadien et la majorité de ses administrateurs doivent être résidents du Canada.

Les décisions générales qui ont permis la mise en place de la dispense pour entreprise en démarrage cesseront de produire leurs effets dans cinq ans soit le 13 mai 2020.

Grâce à cette nouvelle source de financement, qui n'est toujours pas autorisé aux États-Unis, les entreprises en démarrage canadiennes pourront dire adieu aux anciens « investisseurs qualifiés », membres de la famille, amis et partenaires d'affaires et ouvrir leur porte au financement par monsieur et madame tout le monde.

Pour plus d'information consulter :

Avis multilatéral 45-316 des ACVM Dispenses d'inscription et de prospectus pour financement participatif des entreprises en démarrage.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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