Crowdfunding, Part 2
Equity & Loan Based Crowdfunding
lendingclub.com – where you can get personal loans from investors at lower rates than banks, but yes of course it depends on your credit score and history. Borrowers apply for a loan, get funded and start making payments. Investors open an account, build a portfolio, earn and reinvest.
fundable.com allows you to create your company’s profile and choose a rewards or equity fundraiser, for rewards be prepared to provide your backers with some kind of reward, e.g. a copy of your product and for equity based fundraiser, which by the way is only for accredited investors, and you offer a stake in the company. The rewards based fundraiser typically collects less than $50,000. There’s a $99/month fee for their services.
fundingcircle.com funds business owners with money from accredited investors. If eligible, you complete an online application. Within 48 hours you’ll receive indication of your credit standing, submit materials for verification and receive final approval and funds within 5-14 days when all materials are provided. The money you receive is not crowd sourced, instead it is backed by accredited investors and these platforms do allow investments at lower levels such as $1000, $3000 per investor.
angel.co is a platform that brings together startups and investors. You set up your profile and they will review your profile and if approved, you’ll get featured to matching investors. You use the site like a social network.
microventures.com connects angel investors to startups. They look for startups and existing businesses with a unique idea or an innovative spin to old technology that need between $100,000 and $1,000,000 in capital. Their primary areas of interest are internet technology, media and entertainment, software, green technology, mobile, social and gaming. Some of the variables used to measure if your business would be a likely candidate include: evaluation of suitable risk, likelihood of profitability and willingness to give up equity.
Consumer Product Focused Crowdfunding
circleup.com is a crowd funding platform that connects investors and innovative consumer and retail companies. Only 2% of companies that apply are accepted. They look for consumer and retail companies that have substantial revenue and other indicators of potential success. Companies have to have more than 1 million in revenue and a tangible product you can touch, taste or visit. Their main focus is high-growth consumer products in food, beverage, personal care, pet products, sporting goods, apparel, household product, retail and restaurant industries.
They have a large team of investors that have hands on market experience. CircleUp’s average funding time is 2-3 months and they also have partnerships with strategic companies in the marketplace whose expertise can be utilized by growing business with a great product.
crowdsupply.com is unique in that they support you at different stages of your progression in getting your product out to consumers – from conception to delivery. On submitting a concept for approval, you get engineering, marketing and business guidance. They make introductions to potential manufacturers and suppliers. Collect email addresses on a coming soon page featuring the name and image of your product and work with you to prepare a list of media to notify them of your product as soon as it launches. What sets Crowd Supply apart is that once your fundraising goal is met, they offer creators pre-order management, warehousing and fulfillment to help make the transition to operating a business easy. Pre-orders run from end of campaign to the order fulfillment of orders taken during the campaign. They can also continue to help you in retail sales either by buying inventory from you or by taking orders for drop shipping. There is no set fee structure, they are to be negotiated. Also, they release funds to the entrepreneur as soon as minimum goals are reached so they can reach their delivery deadlines. Like Kickstarter, they take 5% of the funds raised in fees. Order fulfillment is separate from raising funds and has separate terms.
Lending Platforms for Social Change
Kiva.com is a platform where lenders loan small amounts of money to people across the globe, which helps them achieve their dreams or at least gives them a push towards it. The people you help do not have access or are not in a position to qualify for a regular loan. You get periodic updates about your loan and repayments as they become available. So sign up and lend someone a helping hand. You can make a big difference with just $25!
worldvisionmicro.org/loans – is another company that facilitates micro lending.
kopernik.info – there are three prongs to this crowd sourcing platform – sources technology designed for the developing world. Disadvantaged communities around the world discover these much-needed products through the website, catalogue and fairs and write a proposal for what they need the most. Kopernik publishes select projects on the website for funding. Donors fund projects, the people a Kopernik ships the technology to the communities in need (to the far corners of the world or the last mile), where people are able to buy the products at an affordable price from local partners. The local partners repay money from the sales to Kopernik and they reinvest it in more technology. Kopernik works with partners within each community and receives feedback regarding the impact of technology and posts photos and info on the website and let donors know what’s going on. Feedback is shared with technology producers so they can make the best technology for the developing world.
Below is the D. Light S300 Solar Lantern with a USB port to recharge phones which is part of the project to help the typhoon survivors in the Western Visayas region, Philippines.