Kickstarter

drag2share: Fred Wilson: The Less Money You Raise, The More Successful Your Startup Will Be

source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/businessinsider/~3/f3GY6CJ1hvU/fred-wilson-on-lean-startups-and-runway-2013-9

airbus a380 takeoff

Running out of money is one sure way to kill a startup. But Union Square Ventures’ Fred Wilson suggests raising too much can also kill startups too.

He’s been in the venture game for multiple decades with a portfolio consisting of Tumblr, Foursquare, Kickstarter and Etsy. He has come to this conclusion:

“The fact is that the amount of money startups raise in their seed and Series A rounds is inversely correlated with success. Yes, I mean that. Less money raised leads to more success. That is the data I stare at all the time.”

Wilson advises startups to operate as lean as possible (Tumblr went two years before hiring a third employee, he points out). Also, don’t worry about how long the money you have will last. If you build something great, the money will follow.

“Getting somewhere fast is the game [startups] should be playing,” Wilson writes. “f you can get the plane to take off, the length of the runway matters less. If you can’t, there is no runway long enough for you.”

Head over to AVC for the full post.


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Thursday, September 19th, 2013 news No Comments

drag2share: Why Millionaires Are Lining Up To Help Students Pay Off DebtHow does it work?What’s in it for the backers?

source: http://feedproxy.google.com/~r/businessinsider/~3/Fi04DkjO1K0/upstart-helps-students-pay-down-loans-launch-businesses-2013-7

Upstart, a company aimed at helping college students-turned-entrepreneurs raise funds for business endeavors (and pay off lingering student debt), is barely a year old and already has wealthy entrepreneurs lining up to give young people a leg up.

They must be doing something right. Since launching in November 2012,  more than 200 backers have made 1,000 unique investments in Upstart projects. Of the 120 Upstarts on the site now, about half have been successfully funded.

L.A.-based entrepreneur Tony Safoian was an early supporter of the site. He’s run his own successful cloud computing and IT consulting firm, SADA Systems, for over a decade, working closely with Upstart’s founders back in their Google days.

“It took me a while to understand the business model, but I definitely feel like [Upstart] is potentially groundbreaking,” Safoian told Business Insider. “I always like being on the ground floor, not taking a massive risk but … literally being a customer or a member and getting integrated that way.”

How does it work?

After passing a rigorous background check, would-be entrepreneurs build a fundraising page with their business proposal and credentials laid out, just like an artist might raise funds on Kickstarter. Then, the site’s cache of “backers” (i.e. investors) have their pick of the litter. Investments start at $100, and backers can fund however much or! little they’d like. On the flip side, Upstarts can also deny investments from backers if they choose.

What sets Upstart apart from other crowdfunding sites is the option backers have to also offer themselves up as a mentor.


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Thursday, July 11th, 2013 news No Comments

Kickstarter pledges more transparency, publishes project stats page with daily updates

Source: http://www.engadget.com/2012/06/21/kickstarter-stats/

Kickstarter pledges more transparency, publishes project stats page with daily updates

Every time we boot up a browser there appears to be a new iPad mount or Arduino project on Kickstarter, but just how many projects have there been to date? How many were successful? And how much might that microfunding startup be netting in commission cash? You can find all those answers through a new Kickstarter stats page (and some number crunching on a calculator), updated daily with key raw data that’s tallied, and broken up by category as well. To date, 60,786 projects have launched, of which 24,986 (44 percent) were successfully funded, 31,722 failed and 4,078 are currently active on the site. Of the $261 million that’s come in, $219 million has been in the form of “successful dollars,” representing $10.95 million in income for the company itself based on a five-percent commission rate — roughly the same amount raised for Pebble, a single project. Speaking of million-dollar-plus projects, there have been a total of seven, including one in the Music category, three in Games, two in Design and one in Comics (Pebble falls within the Design category, not Technology). There are plenty more stats to comb through if you’ve been hankering for a peek behind the scenes at Kickstarter — it’s all at our source link after the break.

Kickstarter pledges more transparency, publishes project stats page with daily updates originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 21 Ju! n 2012 1 6:51:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Friday, June 22nd, 2012 news No Comments

Bolex Camera project raises nearly $250,000 in a single day

Source: http://www.engadget.com/2012/03/14/digital-bolex-kickstarter/

If anyone was still skeptical about the power of Kickstarter, they should pay attention. We’d lined up the Digital Bolex for a forthcoming episode of Insert Coin, but the project managed to surpass its $100,000 funding goal within 24 hours of going online. The camera is the brainchild of Joe Rubinstein and the antidote to most HD video snappers, which record footage in compressed and often interlaced formats that make editing unwieldy. The Digital Bolex, however, shoots its footage as uncompressed RAW files with a native resolution of 2048 x 1152 in Super 16mm mode. The aim is to provide a low-cost (around $3,000) way of getting this technology into the hands of filmmakers who are into their pistol grips. The project fund has swelled to an impressive $245,726 and there’s still 28 days left — would it be possible for them to make a million? If you fancy adding to the tally, shoot the source link and start hoping they can pull this off.

The power of Kickstarter: Bolex Camera project raises nearly $250,000 in a single day originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 14 Mar 2012 12:41:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Wednesday, March 14th, 2012 news No Comments

Node helps your smartphone monitor pretty much everything

Source: http://www.engadget.com/2012/02/23/insert-coin-node-helps-your-smartphone-monitor-pretty-much-ever/

In Insert Coin, we look at an exciting new tech project that requires funding before it can hit production. If you’d like to pitch a project, please send us a tip with “Insert Coin” as the subject line.
Fallen out of love with sensor? Don’t worry, Variable Technologies is here to help. The company’s working to bring the world Node, a project aimed at helping smartphone users “explore the fun and power of sensors.” The “Swiss Army knife-sized” modular device communicates with the iPhone 4S and Android devices via Bluetooth. It has a built-in accelerometer, magnetometer and gyroscope and can detect physical motion and space, temperature and elevation, to name but a few. It also has a game control module and eight LEDs that can double as a camera flash, with carbon monoxide and radiation detection on the way. The Node will be compatible with Arduino devices and will have an open API, firmware and source code. There’s a month left to help Variable hit its lofty $50,000 goal. Click the source link for more info.

Continue reading Insert Coin: Node helps your smartphone monitor pretty much everything

Insert Coin: Node helps your smartphone monitor pretty much everything originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 23 Feb 2012 16:49:00 EDT. Please see our! terms for use of feeds.

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Friday, February 24th, 2012 news No Comments

Source: http://lifehacker.com/5882940/the-best-sites-to-raise-money-and-get-your-ideas-off-the-ground

The Best Sites to Raise Money and Get Your Ideas Off the Ground If you have a brilliant new idea for an mobile app, a handy gadget, a smartphone case that does something cool, an album you want to produce, or even a comic book you want to publish, it’s never been easier to get your idea in front of a lot of people and raise money to make it a reality. There are dozens of free and cheap sites designed to boost new ideas, but not all of them are best for your idea. Here’s how to pick the best one for you.

Sites like Kickstarter and many others all cater to people with ideas they believe can make it big, but who need money to get them off the ground. The community supports the idea, everyone chips in, and with luck and enough interest and the right amount of money, the product gets made and the contributors usually get first cut or a special perk. Still, even though Kickstarter gets a lot of press, it’s not necessarily the best one for your idea.

Photo remixed with an original by dinadesign/Shutterstock.

The Best Sites to Raise Money and Get Your Ideas Off the Ground

For The Most Attention: Kickstarter

Kickstarter is the major player in this space, and for good reason. The service gets a lot of media attention, and even though the majority of Kickstarter projects don’t go anywhere, it’s become the go-to destination for anyone looking to crowd-fund their projects thanks to a few high-profile projects that managed to raise a lot of money. It’s not the biggest crowd-funding community, and it’s not even the one with the best track record, but it’s incredibly easy to use, popular with angel investors and people looking for the next big idea to invest in and get behind, and well organized. Idea creators can set up their profiles for free, founders can pledge as much or as little as they choose, and no money changes hands until time runs out or the project is fully-funded. If the project is fully funded, Kickstarter takes 5% off the top, and the rest goes to the inventor or creator to make their idea happen.

The Best Sites to Raise Money and Get Your Ideas Off the Ground

For App-Builders, Game Designers, and Developers: IndieGoGo

IndieGoGo is actually larger than Kickstarter, and more people there use it for more types of projects. The site takes 4% off the top of your fundraising if you reach your funding goal, and encourages creators and developers to offer perks to the community for funding their projects. Unlike some of its competition, IndieGoGo also has its doors open to charities and non-profits. The site is particularly popular with software and app developers, although all sorts of creative projects are up on the site for funding, including documentary and independant films, education projects, and international aid projects. IndieGoGo also has the benefit of being a global site, available to users around the world.

The Best Sites to Raise Money and Get Your Ideas Off the Ground

For Inventors and Gadget Creators: Quirky

Quirky has an excellent track record, and some of our favorite gadgets started as Quirky ideas. The process of getting your idea in front of the Quirky community is a bit more involved than at other sites. You submit your idea, the community weighs in first on whether or not it’s an idea that could be made into an actual product before it goes in front of the world for fundraising. That’s the key, while other sites focus on creative endeavors, most Quirky projects are tangible products that can be manufactured and sold. The Quirky community is active and engaged in idea building and product design and development, and a lot goes on long before the idea ever gets on the site for presale fundraising. Pricing is on a sliding scale—people who get in early can get lower prices than people who get in later, and once the product is made, Quirky can work to manufacture it themselves, or work with a major retail partner to get it on store shelves everywhere.

The Best Sites to Raise Money and Get Your Ideas Off the Ground

For Musicians: Bandcamp

We touched on this topic a bit in our previous story on how to release music online so music-lovers can get to it, but while SoundCloud was one of our favorite options for releasing your music for free, allowing people to remix it, and comment on it, Bandcamp is another great solution for musicians looking to set up a free storefront on the web to allow people to buy and download their music directly. Artists and fans both love Bandcamp, and the service handles the entire payment platform, from set-your-own-price albums and songs to artists with a mix of free and paid songs in their discography. Artists can also sell merchandise through their stores, and Bandcamp takes a slice off the top depending on the artist’s sales. Fans and music lovers on the other hand get a social platform where they can follow and interact with their favorite artists, get alerts when new music is released, and discover new artists through their friends.

The Best Sites to Raise Money and Get Your Ideas Off the Ground

For Crafty Types: Etsy

Crafty types are already well aware of Etsy and how the platform works. When people who made their own hand-made goods, arts, and custom crafts wanted an online storefront that catered more to their needs than a general auction site like eBay, Etsy was born. The site has dozens of categories, including clothing, art, jewelry, household accessories, and more. While most people know Etsy as a craft-lovers haven, the site is also home to a number of stores that manufacture products you wouldn’t associate with “arts and crafts,” like wall decals, custom motorcycle helmets, and even edible crafts like homemade cookies and beef jerky. Where other similar sites help you get seed money for an idea, Etsy is more of a traditional store, meaning you have to have your idea off the ground and your product ready for sale—even if it’s a single item—before you can sell it.

The Best Sites to Raise Money and Get Your Ideas Off the Ground

For Global Users: RocketHub

Many of these sites limit their membership to users in the United States, but RocketHub is one of the largest global communities dedicated to crowd-funding new ideas. RocketHub combines a traditional crowd-funding site where individuals can promote and raise money for their own ideas and pet projects with a funding bank where people with inspired ideas can connect with sponsors, non-profits, and funding groups who are willing to share some cash with a particularly motivated or passionate individual. The service works much like Kickstarter or IndieGoGo—sign-ups are free, and the site takes a 4% cut.


Different crowd-funding sites have different goals and different audiences. Depending on the type of idea you have and the audience you want to reach, you have an array of sites to choose from, and this is just the beginning. For example, if you have a random request or want to get the crowd’s help in funding a life event like a wedding or a vacation, you can try GoGetFunding, and if you’re an industrial designer, Yanko Design is a great resource for like-minded designers.

Whichever site you choose to get your ideas off the ground, make sure it’s one where the community is aligned with and supportive of your ideas, and you’ll have no trouble raising the funds needed to make it a reality. Have you used any of these sites to crowd-fund a project or idea? Share your experiences in the comments below.

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Tuesday, February 7th, 2012 Uncategorized No Comments

27k projects, almost $100 million in funding

Source: http://www.engadget.com/2012/01/11/kickstarter-details-the-year-that-was-27k-projects-almost-100/

Just how big a year was 2011 for Kickstarter? Very nearly a $100 million dollar year. That was the total amount of funding pledged on the crowd-sourced site during the year ($99,344,382, specifically), which is up considerably from the $27.6 million pledged in 2010. That was generated by just over 27,000 projects, 11,836 of which reached their funding goals (a success rate of 46%, up from 43% in 2010). What’s more, while tech-related projects may generate the most attention ’round these parts, film and music projects were actually the two biggest cash draws on the site (netting $32 million and $19 million, respectively). Hit the source link below for the company’s complete wrap-up.

Kickstarter details the year that was: 27k projects, almost $100 million in funding originally appeared on Engadget on Wed, 11 Jan 2012 01:10:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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Wednesday, January 11th, 2012 news No Comments

A sure sign Facebook’s already in trouble – meteoric rise and meteoric fall coming

Facebook Suicide is on the rise (people leaving Facebook and not coming back)

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/well-these-new-zuckerberg-ims-wont-help-facebooks-privacy-problems-2010-5

According to SAI sources, the following exchange is between a 19-year-old Mark Zuckerberg and a friend shortly after Mark launched The Facebook in his dorm room:

Zuck: Yeah so if you ever need info about anyone at Harvard

Zuck: Just ask.

Zuck: I have over 4,000 emails, pictures, addresses, SNS

[Redacted Friend's Name]: What? How’d you manage that one?

Zuck: People just submitted it.

Zuck: I don’t know why.

Zuck: They “trust me”

Zuck: Dumb fucks.

Source: http://gizmodo.com/5537408/the-devolution-of-facebook-privacy

Google Suggest — top searches starting with “how do i… “

Ecosystem of Apps for Facebook is already overtaken by iPad Apps as evidenced by search volume around the 3 terms.

NYTimes: chart of Facebook Privacy Options – too complex for most people to figure out and use appropriately.

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/what-diaspora-should-do-with-their-newfound-fkyoufacebook-money-2010-5#ixzz0oFA1oSKT

Charlie O’Donnell: “By the time of this post is done, Diaspora, the web decentralization play from four NYU/Courant students in New York, will undoubtedly have $100,000 raised on Kickstarter.  Over and above that, it seems like they’re on a clear path towards a million dollars.  Think I’m poking the bear?  I’m dead serious.  You watch.  A week from now, they get to seven digits.  Why?  Because the ire over Facebook’s privacy issues, platform aggression, etc. is real.  If you’re concerned about Facebook, these guys are your heroes.”

AdAge Poll from May 19, 2010.


My Previous article:  Facebook is going down in unique users, visits, and time spent

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Monday, May 17th, 2010 digital 1 Comment

Dr. Augustine Fou is Digital Consigliere to marketing executives, advising them on digital strategy and Unified Marketing(tm). Dr Fou has over 17 years of in-the-trenches, hands-on experience, which enables him to provide objective, in-depth assessments of their current marketing programs and recommendations for improving business impact and ROI using digital insights.

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