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The CrowdStreet team. (CrowdStreet Photo)

CrowdStreet, a Portland-based commercial real estate crowdfunding startup, has raised a big new funding round, with a twist. Instead of relying solely on venture capital investors, the startup turned to its own community of real estate investors and developers to raise the bulk of the money for its Series C round.

The result: CrowdStreet this morning announced it has raised $12 million, primarily from the users of its platform, bringing lifetime funding to $25 million.

CrowdStreet CEO Tore Steen. (CrowdStreet Photo)

“We pride ourselves in democratizing access to commercial real estate investing, so we wanted to take it one step further and provide individual investors the opportunity to invest in a round that traditionally would have gone entirely to VCs,” Tore Steen, CrowdStreet’s CEO said in a statement.

The round comes just days after the company announced several major executive hires, including a new CFO and CTO.

Real estate continues to be a hotbed for technology investment and innovation. CrowdStreet is part of a growing ecosystem of real estate startups and heavyweights in the Pacific Northwest trying to transform how people buy and sell homes and how commercial developers build major projects. CrowdStreet’s focus is on connecting real estate developers seeking capital to finance projects with investors.

CrowdStreet expects investment volume on its platform to reach $500 million this year alone. That’s more investment activity than the platform saw in its first five years combined. The six-year-old company employs 92 people today, and it expects headcount to reach 100 by the end of the year.

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