Downlights Launches Equity Crowdfunding Campaign The Day New Zealand Announces Move To Alert Level 4
Downlights, a company with a majority disability workforce, launches equity crowdfunding campaign the day Aotearoa New Zealand announces move to Alert Level 4
Auckland-based candle company Downlights Limited launched their equity crowdfunding campaign hours before Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced the move to Alert Level 4 in New Zealand.
“We certainly launched during an unprecedented time.” says founder Jennifer Del Bel.
Downlights’ candles are manufactured by young adults with Down syndrome and intellectual and learning disabilities.
“In times like these, during great economic uncertainty, people from the disability community are often the first to be affected, the first to be left off the list, the first to experience the impact of crisis. Now, more than ever, we must band together and champion inclusion, diversity, and accessibility within business.”
Downlights are aiming to raise up to $300,000 to move from their home into a factory, and increase their production and impact.
“We believe crowdfunding through PledgeMe will provide Downlights with an opportunity to bring in broad members of the community that share the same inclusive views as we do.” says Del Bel.
Ms Del Bel started Downlights when she met Emma Sykes, a woman with Down syndrome who struggled to find employment after completing her high school education. Since they started making candles together, Downlights has captured national media attention and the eye of major international celebrity, George Takei.
Downlights established the Downlights Charitable Trust with one dollar from every candle sold being donated to NZDSA (New Zealand Down Syndrome Association) and RECREATE NZ, organisations which empower disabled youth through employment and skill-building opportunities.
Downlights is seeking to raise between $150,000 and $300,000 which represents 15.2%–26.2% of the company. Shares are $0.75 each with a minimum investment of $300 for 400 shares. Investors will receive non-voting shares, and those that pledge over $25,000 will receive voting shares. All shareholders will receive a 20% discount on candles ordered online.
“Downlights has impacted so many lives and brought good to so many people. We remain future oriented. As the managing director, I firmly believe we will come out of this difficult time shining. ” says Ms Del Bel.
The equity crowdfunding campaign launched on March 23rd, and has raised 10% of it’s goal. The campaign can be found here: https://pledgeme.co.nz/investments/390-downlights-limited