March 5, 2024

Equitybee Competitors

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Looking for an alternative to Equitybee for your investment or stock option needs? Read on to find out more about its biggest competitors.

Who are Equitybee's competitors?
Here are the top 5 competitors of Equitybee:
  1. Collective Liquidity
  2. Forge Global
  3. Secfi
  4. Nasdaq Private Market (formerly SecondMarket)
  5. EquityZen

Equitybee is a popular platform that helps employees exercise their stock options. It also allows investors to invest in private companies before they go public.

But with so many investment platforms to choose from, how does Equitybee compare to its competitors?

Let's take a look at Equitybee's top 5 competitors and how they compare.

What is Equitybee?

Equitybee is a platform that lets startup employees exercise their stock options and allows investors to invest in pre-IPO shares. In other words, it helps startup employees buy their company's stock before it goes public.

However, exercising stock options can be expensive, and employees may not have the cash. This is where Equitybee comes in.

Equitybee connects employees with investors who are willing to fund their stock options. In exchange, employees agree to share a portion of their future stock value with the investors. This way, investors can also invest in the company's pre-IPO stock.

Startup employees are often granted stock options as part of their compensation package. These options give them the right to buy a certain number of shares of the company stock at a fixed price, typically for a period of 7-10 years.

Top 5 Equitybee Competitors

Equitybee is a popular platform, but it's not the only player in the game. Here's a look at its top 5 competitors:

What's your main reason for seeking EquityBee alternative?

Collective Liquidity

For Employees
Collective Liquidity helps sell their company stock and get cash now without paying taxes on the sale. It's best for employees with stock options in private companies who want to sell their shares without being taxed.

A "unicorn" company is a privately held startup company with a valuation of over $1 billion.

Collective Liquidity does this by exchanging the employee's shares for an interest in a portfolio of other private companies. The employee can then borrow against their interest in the portfolio at relatively low rates. This can provide liquidity for employees who need access to cash without having to sell their shares outright.[1]

Once you own a share of the Collective Exchange Fund, you can borrow up to 60% of the value of your shares without having to sell it.[2] You won't have to pay taxes on the exchange or the loan, so you may have more money after taxes than if you sold your shares.

For Investors
Current shareholders of high-growth companies will benefit more from investing in the Collective fund to diversify their holdings without paying taxes.

They do this by letting shareholders swap their company shares for a stake in a different fund that holds a variety of companies. This swap avoids capital gains taxes, making it a cheaper way to diversify than selling their shares and buying other things.

Eligibility requirements:

  • Employees: You must be an employee of a company that is backed by Collective Liquidity.
  • Investors: You must be an accredited investor, and your holdings are included by list of companies backed by Collective Liquidity.

The Collective Exchange Fund charges a 1.75% annual management fee and a 15% performance fee. You can find more information about the Fund in the Fund's Private Placement Memorandum.

Note that, as an investor, you would own a portion of the Collective Liquidity Fund itself instead of owning shares directly in specific unicorn companies. This means you wouldn't have direct ownership in the individual companies and, therefore, won't have any say in their decisions.

Forge Global

For Employees
Forge provides financial services that enable employees to exercise stock options and sell it on Forge Markets. It's best for employees who want to buy their stock option and maintain ownership.

Unlike other stock option financing solutions that may require you to give up a significant portion of your equity (like Collective Liquidity), Forge offers a flat-fee loan that allows you to retain full ownership of your shares.

Forge Global offers liquidity programs and liquidity solutions: [3]
  • Employee liquidity programs
    Forge Global can work with private companies to create employee liquidity programs that allow employees to sell some of their shares before the company goes public.

  • Shareholder liquidity solutions
    Forge Global can also help private company shareholders sell their shares. This can be helpful for shareholders who need to diversify their portfolios or who need to raise cash.

For Accredited Investors
With Forge Global, you can buy and sell shares in early-stage startups to late-stage tech companies. This also includes companies that are preparing to go public (pre-IPO). The minimum investment is $100,000.

Eligibility requirements:

  • Employees: To get a loan from Forge, you need to have a buyer for your stock on Forge Markets and approval from the company to pledge and sell your vested stock.[4]
  • Investors: To participate as a buyer in the United States, you must be an accredited investor, as defined by federal securities laws.

Borrowers are charged a flat origination fee, which varies based on the amount of the loan and the state in which you reside.[4]

But for investors, Forge Markets charges a 5% fee for most transactions and trades. Fees may be higher for transactions below $100,000. Contact your Forge Private Market Specialist to discuss transaction sizes and fees. [5]


For Employees
Secfi covers all your stock option exercise costs, and you pay back the money when your company exits. It's a non-recourse financing platform that lets startup employees borrow money to exercise their stock options.[6] This also includes tax expenses.

For Investors
Secfi allows investment in the shares of current or former employees, giving you early access to high-growth startups. This means that there is no need for company approval.

Their investment structure lets you hold onto potential gains and defer paying taxes until later. And if a company doesn't quite take off, you can use it as a tax deduction.[7]

Eligibility requirements:
Secfi must approve your company. They're constantly updating the list of companies they have approved for non-recourse financing, so they'll contact you when your company is approved.

Secfi financing rates are based on the following factors:[8]

  • The transaction's risk is determined by the company's business model, competitive landscape, and exit projections
  • The specific details of each individual transaction, such as the employee's strike price and tax needs

Note that Secfi rates are not negotiable.

Nasdaq Private Market or NPM (formerly SecondMarket)

For Employees
Nasdaq Private Market (NPM) can help not only in exercising employee stock options but options in general. Since 2013, it has helped over 200 secondary programs. They assist companies in enabling their employees to sell vested shares or exercise and sell options.[9]

For Investors
NPM provides multiple ways for shareholders and investors to trade their company shares, including custom marketplaces for more controlled trading.

NPM offers a variety of trading options such as tender offers, auctions, and block trades. This makes it easier for private companies to manage their equity and provide liquidity events for employees and investors.

NPM offers different ways for private companies to sell their shares, such as:[10]
  • Tender offers: Private companies can use tender offers to buy back shares from their employees and other shareholders.
  • Auctions: Private companies can also use auctions to sell shares to new investors.
  • SecondMarket Trading Platform: NPM can facilitate block trades of private company stock between large investors.
  • Pre-Direct Listing Liquidity Program: NPM can create custom marketplaces for private companies to trade their shares in a secondary marketplace prior to direct listing.

Eligibility requirements:

  • Employees: To determine your eligibility, you must complete a basic information sheet first.
  • Investors: Nasdaq requires you to be an accredited investor to participate in their exchange.

NPM by Nasdaq does not have a fixed transaction fee. Instead, fees are negotiated on a case-by-case basis with each company using the platform. The final fee can depend on factors such as the transaction size, the liquidity of the company's shares, and the complexity of the deal.

A good example of how NPM does their pricing can be found in their Private Company Secondary Pricing Structures.


For Employees
EquityZen allows the selling of employee equity as long as your company is an issuer in the platform.

For Investors
EquityZen allows pre-IPO investments in late-stage companies through various investment vehicles. This includes funds, direct investments, and secondary transactions.

EquityZen is known for its various investment options, especially the three investment fund types they offer. They offer single company funds, which allows you to invest in a specific company through an EquityZen fund. This fund also gives you access to more liquidity so that you can sell your shares easily.

Their multi-company funds allow you to invest in multiple companies through a single EquityZen fund. This is great for diversifying your portfolio and reducing your risk. Plus, you'll have access to EquityZen's team of experts, who work hard to select and monitor the underlying companies.

Direct share acquisitions allow you to invest directly in a company through EquityZen, which give you more control over your investment. This is better for investors with a higher risk tolerance.

Eligibility requirements:

  • Employees: You must be employed by a private company listed on EquityZen and have equity in the company (e.g., vested stock options or RSUs).
  • Investors: You must be an accredited investor and invest a minimum of $10,000. [11]

There was no mention of the fees when employees sell their equity. But investors are usually charged a one-time sales fee. Fees depend on the size of your investment:[12]

  • Investments up to $500,000: 5% fee
  • Investments of $500k to $1 million: 4% fee
  • Investments of $1 million and up: 3% fee


To come up with the list, we first identified the key features of Equitybee. It's a private equity marketplace that allows employees of early-stage startups to sell their shares before the company goes public.

Next, we looked at other companies that offered similar products and services. We used platform websites and industry directories to find potential competitors.

Once we came up with a list of potential competitors, we evaluated each one based on the following criteria:

  • Target audience: Do they serve the same type of people as Equitybee?
  • Features: Do they offer the same key features as Equitybee?
  • Pricing: Are their prices similar to Equitybee's?
  • Reputation: Do they have a good reputation in the industry?

After evaluating each company, the top 5 Equitybee competitors were selected.

What matters most in an EquityBee alternative?

Bottom Line

Finding the best pre-IPO investment platform depends on your specific situation and goals:

  • Employees of pre-IPO companies will prefer platforms that provide pre-IPO option solutions. These can help them exercise their stock options and manage their equity holdings.

  • Startup investors, on the other hand, may prefer platforms with expertise in working with startups. These platforms can provide investors with access to exclusive deals and insights.

  • If you're seeking a comprehensive liquidity solution with a wide range of features, platforms like EquityZen and Equitybee are worth considering.

Regardless of your choice, be sure to carefully compare the features, pricing, and pros and cons of each platform before making a decision.


  1. ^ Collective Liquidity. Why Collective Liquidity?, Retrieved 11/21/2023
  2. ^ Collective. Frequently Asked Questions about the Collective Exchange Fund and Loans, Retrieved 11/27/2023
  3. ^ Forge Global. Company Liquidity For Your Employees And Beyond, Retrieved 1/19/2024
  4. ^ Forge Global. About the Forge Options Exercise Bridge Loan, Retrieved 12/27/2023
  5. ^ Forge Global. FAQ: What are the fees associated with trading through Forge Markets?, Retrieved 11/21/2023
  6. ^ Secfi. Is Secfi Providing A Loan?, Retrieved 1/19/24
  7. ^ Secfi. Diversify your investment portfolio, Retrieved 12/27/23
  8. ^ Secfi. FAQ: What are Secfi's financing rates?, Retrieved 11/21/2023
  9. ^ Nasdaq Private Market. Nasdaq Private Market: An Overview Of Restricted Stock Units, Retrieved 12/27/2023
  10. ^ Nasdaq Private Market. Explore All Products, Retrieved 12/27/2023
  11. ^ EquityZen. FAQ: What's the minimum investment size?, Retrieved 11/21/2023
  12. ^ EquityZen. FAQ: Are there investment fees?, Retrieved 11/21/2023

Invest in High-Growth Startups

Equitybee gives accredited investors access to high-growth, VC-backed startups. By funding employee stock options, accredited investors can gain investment exposure to private companies at past valuations. In exchange for funding the options, you will receive a percentage of future proceeds from any successful liquidity events. Subject to availability. Investments involve risk; Equitybee Securities, member FINRA


Invest in Private Companies

  • Invest in pre-IPO companies through an EquityZen fund.
  • $10,000 minimum investment
  • Available to accredited investors only

Free Gold IRA Kit

  • Up to $10,000 in free silver for eligible customers
  • Highest buyback price, guaranteed
  • Endorsed by Sean Hannity and Chuck Norris

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