In a nutshell:

During the latter part of 2015 and in 2016, the fund has made a loss, so we have no profit to invest in projects this year.

However, we have devoleped another route through which we are seeking to help projects (see also the April Newsletter). In connection with the new Ethereum-based member & share register and management, the coop has been designing new tools for crowdfunding/crowdfinancing. So this year we want to offer for projects the facilitated beta-testing of new kind of P2P financial tools which the projects can use to finance themselves! And we are willing to help to make the campaigns and financing happen.

Because of the limited resources of the coop and the team, the number of projects we can help will be limited (less than 5, as an early estimate; the board will make the selection together with the development team).

The details:

Robin Hood is a project developing new tools of finance, giving everybody access to finance and its powers. Why? Because finance has a power to open new possibilities. We just haven’t had an access to its operating system. This is the raison d’etre for what we are doing. The cooperative form itself is one innovation here, and combined with the use of the Parasite algorithm we have become a wealthy and strong cooperative, with a growing membership and visible presence. We are not only about “wealth management” but essentially about making something new possible.

So we are again looking for interesting projects that need funding, not in order to give direct monetary support, but in order to arrange an innovative crowdfunding campaign.

What we offer:
-we will design, with the project, a crowdfunding campaign that goes beyond what existing crowdfunding platforms (like kickstarter/indiegogo/patreon) facilitate; a campaign where donors/funders get “a piece of the action”, not just a end-product. For instance, http://ujomusic.com/ is giving funders a share in the copyrights of funded music; we are thinking that similar things could be done in other fields than muic and sharing other stuff as copyright: for instance, give funders the possibility to access additional material, ownership in terms of both property and affinity, rights to re-use some of the material in their own remixes, to co-market and share profits, to become co-producers, and so on.

What we are looking for is projects with:
-large and active social networks
-innovative and experimental ways of engaging the networks
-a crowdfunding need that
–does not fit with what the existing crowdfunding platforms offer
–is generalisable beyond a particular case/geography/jurisdiction

Write to projects@robinhoodcoop.org and let us know if you are interested!

Share
Read more

Imagine… that Robin Hood Coop shares were registered on a blockchain and their value was marked-to-market every day.

For starters, this would make the shares much more liquid. Members could easily and instantly buy and sell their shares to and from each other on a blockchain-based marketplace (an after-market, or secondary market, so to say).

Then, in essence, this would transform the share into the world’s first crypto-asset which is backed by a portfolio of stocks. Imagine a “Bitcoin” backed up with a real assets like that! Or even more precisely, the Robin Hood share would become a smart asset backed by the dynamic portfolio of company stocks whose future is shown to be the most promising by the emerging consensus action of the best big players at the market. It is not a bad place to have your money in. Sure, the market fluctuates, but it is difficult to think anything less insecure than equity in such companies. Another financial innovation engineered by Robin Hood R&D team.

But there is more. This could mean that members can directly command their money, what it does, with whom it cooperates and how. The members could allocate their support for certain Robin Hood projects directly, without a decision by the AGM and/or the board. This would be a big step towards a more dynamic and more distributed coop, coop 2.0 – the one we need for of the 21st century.

It could mean that we can also issue shares that can be easily managed by Parasite’s little sisters or by another new algorithm or method. And it could mean that any member or group of members can start their own hedge fund “powered by Robin Hood” or “Robin Hood inside”.

We are happy to announce that this “imaginary what if” is to become reality. RHC has partnered with HitFin, Inc., to develop a blockchain based share management system and the marketplace. At the same time, Robin Hood is planning to move from issuing 30€ nominal value shares to the more familiar model, where members can invest in voluntary shares with any amount of euros, dollars or Bitcoin.

There are a lot of details to discuss, lots of possibilities opening, and – no doubt – also some hurdles and problems ahead. So let’s start!

Share
Read more

It is that time of the year again: the yearly general members meeting of the coop will be held on December 17.-19. in Loomio.org, just like the meeting last year.

The agenda is, in short, the following:

Agenda 1: Opening of the meeting

Agenda 2: Accepting the agenda

Agenda 3: What happened 2014-2015

The cooperative grew in terms of members (+121%) and assets under management (+44%)

First support round for projects: 15 000 euros divided between three projects. (http://projects.robinhoodcoop.org/robin-hood-coop-funds-3-commons-building-projects/)

Big steps have been taken with regard to the decisions made in 2014: Robin Hood Services has been established to widen the product portfolio (more in http://discourse.robinhoodcoop.org) and co-operation with other initiatives has been active.

Agenda 4: Annual accounts 2014-2015

Agenda 5: Next steps of the cooperative

Agenda 6: Selection of the board

Agenda 7: Ending of the Meeting

Deatiled full agenda will be available in Loomio. Members will get an invite to Loomio soon. Keep an eye on your inbox!

Share
Read more

Program here: http://events.robinhoodcoop.org/athens-2015/

In outline:

The Robin Hood Laboratory in Athens has three functions.

1. First, we will meet with interested social movements in Athens and try to learn from them everything we can. This takes place in informal meeting around Athens 16-19.11.15.

2. Second, we will develop further the concept of finance in terms of new equity relations and commonfare. We will have a workshop on Friday 20.11.15 and some very interesting thinkers like Carlo Vercellone, Robert Meister and Andrea Fumagalli are coming to work with us.

3.Third, we will run a testing/prototyping session with the second generation P2P finance platform Robin Hood is developing. Finance as a place of creation session is on Saturday 21.11.15.

Share
Read more

Press Release, October 2, 2015.

sammal

Robin Hood Coop is proud to announce its first round of funding for commons producing projects. The coop supports Casa Nuvem in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, with 5000 euros, the P2P Foundation’s project with the Catalan Integral Cooperative and Commons Transition in Spain with 4000 euros, and the Radio Schizoanalytique and the Steki in Northern Greece with 6000 euros.

Robin Hood Asset Management Coop was founded in 2012 as an investment bank for the precariat. The goal of the coop is to build new economic space by giving its members access to investment banking (just 60€ is enough) and by allocating a part of the profits to building the commons through sponsoring projects.

Casa Nuvem (see also here) is an autonomous self managed space in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, resulting from the convergence between art, activism, sound, audio-visual and new technologies experimentation. It was born early 2013 from the desire to think and build the future collectively, and to provide grounds for resilience and mobilization in the context of Rio’s wide social injustice and lack of basic rights, continuously intensified by the state policies related to the mega events such as the upcoming Olympics next year. Casa Nuvem is a place of work, research and production that hosts several independent collaborative projects focused on the creation of new exchanges between people and the public space, guided by a festive occupation of the city. Regular actions, workshops, seminars and other open activities are organized in the house, besides frequent interventions in outside target locations. It cooperates intensively with other groups and actors in a network of interactions that values above all the respect towards differences, respect for freedom of expression, freedom of the body, multiplicity of gender, the right to the city and alternative mobility.
(Project proposal)

The P2P Foundation in involved in a practical, grassroots effort to animate a Commons Transition strategy, in real time and real community. The foundation is working as a team with the Catalan Integral Cooperative (aka the CIC) to achieve a self-managed, post-capitalist society based on P2P principles and environmental and social realities. The ultimate goal is to realize a well-expressed, researched and tested set of plans and proposals, ultimately providing concrete examples in real time. In the project, CIC expands and implements the theoretical material proposed by the P2PF in the Commons Transition platform, and the P2PF produces an updated body of work to reflect the experience and shares it with other collectives.
(Project proposal)

Radio Schizonalaytique and the Steki are a project in the Skouries-­Kakkavos mountains in Northern Greece, where the Canadian “low-­cost” gold mining company Eldorado owns and operates mining sites. Local communities have been organized against the construction of an open pit mine and processing plant since 2006. After a house built to monitor the activities of the mine was destroyed, the main organizers transformed an empty storefront into a community action center for hosting workshops, lectures, screenings and cultural events, and as a social center to nurture the creation of a sustainable future for the region. One of the key features of the Steki is the online and FM radio project “Radio Schizoanalitique”, a collaborative project between the activists in Megali Panagia and artists in Berlin, designed to break the control the mining company and its proponents have on the local media.
(Project proposal)

Robin Hood Coop is an activist hedge fund with a twist. Individuals who buy shares become members and decide how the coop is run. One member, one vote. Per the Robin Hood principle, part of the profit generated by the fund is invested into projects building the commons. Third, the money put into the fund is placed in the stock exchange by a big data mining algorithm.

During its first two years of operation, 2012 – 2014, the coop’s portfolio was able to generate enough profit so that the coop decided to allocate 15 000 euros to projects that build and augment the commons. Members of the coop made proposals of projects to fund during March 2015. In total there were 49 proposals. The selection was done in two steps. First, a committee of three members was chosen by lottery out of volunteers. The committee went through all the proposals, discussed on criteria and negotiated, and came to an unanimous agreement of suggesting 3 projects to be funded. The committee’s proposal was then ratified by a general member’s meeting of the coop.

For more info, contact: projects@robinhoodcoop.org

http://robinhoodcoop.org
http://projects.robinhoodcoop.org
http://discourse.robinhoodcoop.org

Share
Read more

Crossposting from state.com

Throughout history there have been places and stories that symbolise the unlikely event of outlaws stealing from the rich and giving to the poor, becoming quite popular in the process. Whether it is the Forests of Sherwood or the Marshes of Mount Liang, these places give a retreat to plan and experiment with alternative social and economic arrangements.

Once again there is a growing sense around the world that something’s up. Inequality is growing, and especially those in the lower rungs of the economic hierarchy feel that those on the very top are getting undue and unjust rewards. Moreover, the rulers don’t seem to notice that entire sectors of society are being squeezed out of the economy. The whole set-up feels like an iron prison, with no space for movement. Ask the Greeks.

On one side there are the finacialisation of the economy, the monetisation of social labour by platform companies like Google and Facebook, and the definition of entire generations and nations by debt. On the other side there are the emerging models of peer production, increasing access to data and a wide range of networked skills and capacities. Structures like Uber are mushrooming by cutting out the middle layer without necessarily giving any more economic freedom to the people putting their skills and capital into use. The question is, what would Robin Hood do?

The first answer by the Robin Hood Asset Management Cooperative was to set up a hedge fund with a twist. In fact, three twists. First, as the name suggests, it is a cooperative. Individuals who buy shares become members and decide how the coop is run. One member, one vote. Second, per the Robin Hood principle, part of the profit generated by the fund is invested into projects building the commons. Third, the money put into the fund is placed in the stock exchange by an algorithm called “the parasite”.

Let us open those three quirks a little bit, starting with the parasite. It is a patented algorithm developed by ex-fighter pilot and IT wizard Sakari Virkki who also develops and oversees it for the coop. In qualitative terms, the parasite listens to the feed of the NYSE, watching for traders and what they trade. Then it competency ranks traders, identifying ones that are constantly making money on specific stocks. When it sees that a consensus is forming among such competent traders, it follows.

Despite the very modest sum the parasite has had in its hands during the two years of operation, it has genetated enough money so that we can allocate 15 000 euros to commons building projects this year. What do we mean by the commons? Our definition is very comprehensive. The project can be anywhere in the world and on any sector of human life, provided that it generates – not only for itself, but to everyone – shared space, resources or means of production. When buying shares, members can choose how much of the profit generated by their shares they keep, and how much goes to the project fund. 10/90, 50/50 or 80/20, it is up to you. Members choose their level of altruism, and they also propose the projects to be invested in. Finally, a committee of volunteer members (selected by lottery) sorts out which projects to fund.

We have been very happy to be able to provide asset management for minor capital. The membership fee is 30 euros, and the shares also cost 30 euros apiece, so with 60 euros you become a fully qualified owner of a hedge fund. On the other hand, doing financial services as a coop has not been easy, simply because that is not what the law (in Finland, where Robin Hood is registered, or, for that matter, anywhere in the world) supposes that coops do. For the collaborative decision making by over 600 members spread around the world, the platform set up by Loomio has been a godsend.

So far, so good. However the legendary Robin Hood was not only interested in getting the king’s deer for everyone. He also thought that the rule by the sheriff of Nottingham was unjust and illegitimate, a state that would be rectified with the return of the true king. Nowadays we might not have the option of rooting for the return of the righteous king. But maybe we can still think that it would be good to create economic space that supports our lives without filling the Sheriff’s coffers.

How would Robin Hood do it? Maybe he would invite his merry sisters and brothers to Sherwood. There they would put their efforts together in thinking about the situation, its possibilities. Maybe they would notice that financial technology is not only the “weapon of mass destruction” visible since 2008, but also a weapon of mass construction, something to be used in creating new flows and attractors. Combined with new tools of decentralisation, such as the blockchain, who knows what kinds of economic space could be conjured into existence. What do you think?

Share
Read more