Fayetteville's AcreTrader Raising Farm Cash

Fayetteville's AcreTrader Raising Farm Cash

Did you know a Fayetteville company has been raising money to buy farms?

Since launching in March, AcreTrader has had five offerings and raised a total of $1.6 million, according to the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission.

“You’ll see many more of those filings in the future as well as we continue to do more offerings,” said AcreTrader’s founder and CEO, Carter Malloy.

AcreTrader buys a farm and places it in a unique LLC. “The investors then come on our website, and they can invest as little as $5,000 or $10,000 in a farm,” Malloy told Whispers. “It’s pretty simple. … You can do it literally in minutes online on our website,” AcreTrader.com.

Malloy said he had been working in professional equity investing for about a dozen years and spent seven years at Stephens Inc. of Little Rock. “I’ve been investing in farmland and buying and selling farmland and realized after some period of time that there’s a multitrillion-dollar asset class with pretty exceptional historical performance, and there was no real online marketplace for people to add it to their portfolio,” he said. “So that was the genesis of the business.

“Basically it’s crowdfunding for farmland,” said Malloy, whose father is a farmer.

Typically, a farmer will pay AcreTrader rent, and the company takes care of all the administration and payments.

Investors are expected to receive an annual payment from the farmers’ rent and a disbursement when AcreTrader eventually sells the farm, which could be three, five or 10 years.

The company has grown to 15 employees. “We’re busy, but we’re having a lot of fun,” Malloy said.