Tax-advantaged retirement accounts are one tool that individuals can use to build the wealth they need to live out their golden years in comfort. Typically, these accounts hold stocks, bonds, ETFs, or mutual funds that give investors time to let their portfolios build value over the long haul.
Some individuals may prefer to take control of their retirement savings and use self-directed strategies to diversify their portfolio and pursue differentiated returns. For these individuals, investing in companies before they are publicly traded may be an appropriate strategy to add to their retirement portfolio.
As a leading private securities marketplace, Forge Global specializes in helping individuals buy shares of private companies that are developing the technologies of the future. Through our custodial division, Forge Trust, investors can open a Self-Directed IRA which can then hold these shares in a tax-advantaged manner.
What is a Self-Directed IRA?
A Self-Directed IRA account (SDIRA) is a retirement account where individuals control their investment options and are free to allocate their dollars across a spectrum of alternative asset classes.
While traditional IRA accounts may only invest in stocks, bonds, mutual funds, ETFs, and other conventional liquid assets, SRIRAs may hold alternative assets, including private company shares, real estate, direct lending, private debt, etc.
SDIRAs are available to investors as
- Traditional IRAs, where individuals make tax-deductible contributions, or
- Roth IRAs, where individuals make post-tax contributions and collect tax-free distributions once they meet the holding period
Forge Global has facilitated over $12 billion in private company investments,1 and Forge Trust provides custody and safekeeping for more than $14 billion of alternative assets. 2 Investors seeking more diversified retirement returns can work with Forge Global to own shares of private companies, which can be held in a Forge Trust SDIRA account.
Why private companies?
Today’s private companies are on the cutting edge of new technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and clean energy, as well as more established categories like enterprise software and financial technology. In addition, today’s technology companies tend to stay private for longer periods of time and accrue more value while private than those in the past.
Pre-IPO investing offers individuals the opportunity to invest in companies early, while that value is developing, rather than waiting until a company has grown to the point of going public. Imagine if you invested in a company like Apple or Microsoft before they ever went public.
That said, investing in a pre-IPO company can potentially carry more risk. For one, there is no guarantee the private company will go public or have a liquidity event. Furthermore, even if the company does go public, there is no guarantee that the investment will be profitable, as some stocks drop before or after going public.
Who can invest in private markets through Self-Directed retirement accounts?
Individuals must be accredited in order to invest in private companies. An accredited investor is someone who meets specific criteria, such as having a net worth of at least $1 million, or an income exceeding $200,000 for the past two years. There may be additional vetting considerations when investing in private companies, and Forge Global provides a Private Market Specialist to work with investors throughout the process.
How can I learn more about investing in private companies with Forge Trust?
Forge Global is a leader in private market investing, and Forge Trust provides custody for nearly 2 million retirement accounts. To learn more about opening a Self-Directed IRA to invest in private companies or other alternative assets, visit the Forge Trust Co. website or call 1-800-248-8447.