Digital Spy

Search Digital Spy
0

Tech News

UK crowd-funding platforms combine to take on Kickstarter

By
Two UK crowd-funding platforms have merged to create a network that can take on new market entrants, particularly US firm Kickstarter.

Exeter-based Crowdfunder, operated by Crowdcube, will team up with Plymouth's Peoplefund.it, the service launched by KEO digital, the makers of sites such as rivercottage.net and fishfight.net.

Crowdfunder  website screenshot


The South-West companies are to combine their technology and marketing platforms, as well as branding and other assets to create a platform "that will rival other new entrants to the crowdfunding market, including US-based Kickstarter".

Crowd-source funding sites offer a platform for entrepreneurs and companies to advertise their new projects and request funding 'pledges' from the online community.

Pledges don't get an equity share as with traditional investment, but instead are offered special perks and rewards linked to the new product or service.

Kickstarter is the leading brand in the growing crowd-funding industry, estimated to be worth $1.5 billon (£930m). The site, which expanded to the UK this autumn, takes a cut of donations for any successful projects as its business model.

Nick Underhill, Peoplefund.it's co-founder, said that he hopes the merger with Crowdfunder will help grow the UK crowd funding market, which is currently worth around £80m.

"It's a game-changing move for Peoplefund.it and makes us the UK's leading crowdfunding network," he said. "Our aim is to inspire, engage and transform communities through enterprise - and following the arrival of Kickstarter in the UK - this is another huge step forward for British crowdfunding."

Peoplefund.it website screenshot


Crowdfunder founder, Darren Westlake, added: "The merger of Crowdfunder and Peoplefund.it makes a huge amount of sense for UK projects that need funding.

"It will deliver scale, expertise and marketing reach - essential for those projects who want the best funding platform possible."

The two sites work broadly the same as Kickstarter, with businesses able to ask the general public for funding to set up or expand.

They set a target for the fundraising drive and explain their aims, and then people can pledge whatever they want in return for a reward if the target is reached.

But Underhill said that the merged sites will retain a "distinctly UK feel" with a greater focus on local communities compared to Kickstarter.

"The international arrivals into the UK market are fantastic news as they grow and validate the market, however Peoplefund.it has a distinctly UK feel in line with our culture," he said.

"It's more local and community connected. It's a great platform for entrepreneurs, socialpreneurs and civic-preneurs who want to make a difference. Peoplefund.it seeks to remodel the relationship between communities and UK enterprise - one street at a time."

Despite the merger, the two sites are currently pretty small-fry compared to Kickstarter.

Peoplefund.it managed to raise £40,000 for The Bicycle Academy in six days, but typically raises sums of under £10,000 for new projects.

Crowdfunder, launched two years ago, has generated more than £330,000 for nearly 200 ideas, including £15,081 for a cappella band The Magnets and £11,023 for London-based social network A Great Little Place.

By contrast, Kickstarter has raised more than $340m (£211m) for entrepreneurs and projects since its launch in 2009, including the record of $10 million (£6,433,000) for the Pebble smartwatch this year.

You May Like

Comments

Loading...