26 March 2012 Last updated at 07:53 ET Help Small firms around the world are finding it tougher to raise money to grow their business.
One report suggests banks will cutback lending by a trillion dollars this year.
That makes alternative sources of funding all the more important.
In the United States, President Obama is set to sign a new law that would allow private firms to raise money from large numbers of shareholders, otherwise known as crowd-funding.
Caroline Hepker reports.