In Colombia, world’s first crowdfunded skyscraper offers investors a share in profits

Citizens don’t often get a say in the major building developments that populate their city, mostly because they are usually funded by wealthy architects or investors. However, we recently saw residents in Copenhagen called upon to determine the construction of a new bridge through crowdfunding, and now the BD Bacatá project in Colombia aims to hand over power to the future inhabitants of a skyscraper by getting them to invest in its development.

Those interested in putting money into the project are enabled to do so through what is known as a Figura Internacional de Inversión Inmobiliaria (FiDi), a type of share that gives the investor ownership of part of the property as well as a stake in the company. The team started offering investment options in 2010 and already have 3,000 people investing a total of USD 145 million of its USD 240 million target. The BD Bacatá will eventually house apartments, retail spaces, offices and entertainment venues. The scheme shows that cities can erect a major building without the backing of wealthy patrons as a prerequisite. The following video shows how the campaign worked:

When completed in 2014, the building will become the tallest building in the country, as well as the first owned by the people who use it. Those who believe in crowdfunding as a business model are finding success even in lofty projects such as this one. Is there a niche yet to be discovered?


Spotted by Murtaza Patel

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