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ComCap The Podcast

Jul 13, 2017

Local Investing in Vermont with Janice Shade

The story of Milk Money Vermont takes one state, two motivated entrepreneurs, hundreds of cups of coffee, and unlike your typical caffeinated afternoon, the inspiration and plan to create a state-based crowdfunding platform. In this episode of ComCap the Podcast, Amy Pearl chats with Janice Shade, co-founder of Milk Money Vermont, to learn how her and her business partner, Louisa Schilbi, crossed paths, teamed up, and started up an intrastate crowdfunding initiative for the entrepreneurs and citizen investors in the beautiful state of Vermont.

Milk Money is Vermont’s answer to the intrastate crowdfunding exemptions that are sweeping the nation, allowing citizens to invest in local companies within state lines.  Janice discusses the success that Vermont is having with convertible debt offerings, and how entrepreneurs in Vermont are realizing the importance of community-supported investment vs. angel funding.  

Listen and learn from Janice’s successes, strategy and her own stories of entrepreneurship, and then join all of us for ComCap17 in this September to discuss your state’s opportunities.


Amy Pearl, Executive Director, Hatch Innovation



Janice Shade, Co-founder, Milk Money Vermont

Janice Shade is an entrepreneur and writer with over 25 years experience in strategic planning, brand management and financial strategy.  She gained valuable formal training with companies such as Procter & Gamble, Welch’s, and Seventh Generation before launching her own entrepreneurial ventures in 2006. She considers herself a “pathological optimist” and sees obstacles as opportunities.  Creating order from chaos in pursuit of environmental and social improvement is her passion.  

Her current venture is Milk Money L3C, a pioneering “invest local” crowdfunding platform where Vermonters can support their local economy by investing in Vermont entrepreneurs.  The concept for Milk Money grew directly from her experience launching, funding and managing TrueBody Products, a natural personal care products company, and Local First Vermont, a nonprofit dedicated to promoting the “buy local” movement across Vermont.  Her successes and failures, struggles and homeruns with her first two entrepreneurial ventures are the basis for an upcoming book that explores the impact of traditional capital markets on social entrepreneurism.

Janice received a B.S. in Finance from Boston University and an MBA in Corporate Strategy from Yale School of Management.  She is an avid skier and hiker, rookie triathlete, youth soccer coach and experimental cook. She lives in Jericho, VT, with her husband and two daughters.

In this episode you’ll learn

  1. What inspired Janice and her co-founder, Louisa Schibli, to create Milk Money Vermont.
  2. Some of the challenges creating Milk Money, Vermont’s intrastate investment platform.
  3. Recommendations and shared experiences for women entrepreneurs.
  4. Tricks for pitching to investors.
  5. How convertible debt has been important for the offerings in Vermont

Links to Resources Mentioned

  1. Hatch Innovation
  2. Milk Money Vermont  
  3. Milk Money Twitter
  4. Mamava
  5. Spreadsheet for Monthly Cash flow
  6. Infographic on convertible debt


“State your pedigree up front, so that’s one thing we’ve learned to do.  We both have some great..really relevant, interesting experience, so that’s one thing as women, I think we have to put that out there sooner, drop some of the names from our resumes and things like that. People start nodding their heads and going ‘Yah, these are serious women!’”   - Janice Shade