Maine’s new crowdfunding law has triggered at least one new business opportunity.

Portland entrepreneur William Sullivan said he saw a business opportunity as he thought about how business owners will reach potential investors. It’s one thing to be able to find accredited investors in one place, he noted, as is the case when entrepreneurs pitch their businesses in front of an angel-investing group like the Maine Angels. But when potential investors can be anyone, the search for a good matchup can be daunting.

Sullivan co-founded a startup called Backer.ly, which he expects will provide the first online portal to function as a clearinghouse for Maine entrepreneurs selling shares or debt in their companies. Under state law, any online portal has to be a registered investment broker-dealer, so Sullivan and his co-founder Kate Curran hooked up with Brad McCurtain, CEO of Maine Securities Corp. and a longtime licensed broker-dealer in Portland. McCurtain was already working on developing a portal for his company when Sullivan and Curran approached him, so they decided to pool their efforts. They expect the first version of the portal to be launched by the end of March.