Direct Public Offerings (DPOs) are a way for small businesses to raise investments from their communities and customers. DPOs are similar to Initial Public Offerings (IPOs), where people buy shares in a company. But unlike IPOs, stock is not traded on a stock market or sold by big investment banks. DPOs are also an alternative to private investments that are limited to wealthy investors. Businesses conducting DPOs can take investments from almost anyone in the general public who meets minimal requirements. This allows working class and middle class people to make investments in companies they believe in. DPOs are similar to “crowdfunding” in that businesses can bypass conventional sources of financing and raise money directly from their supporters.