Firms thrive on crowdfunding

Monday, September 10, 2018

Freedom from old-style loans, link to buyers, offer advantages to small businesses.

Crowdfunding — seeking money from many people before a product goes to market — began as an upstart way for people to launch products and circumvent investors. But it has emerged as an integral part of some businesses’ operations.

Give’r and DMOS Collective both used Kickstarter to launch their flagship products in 2015 — the Four-Season Gloves for Give’r and the original Stealth Shovel for DMOS. Both campaigns were resounding successes, exceeding the companies’ goals.

In the original days of crowdfunding, a successful campaign would have been a springboard for a company to enter into what are considered traditional business practices, taking out business loans, finding investors, putting capital into research and development. But Give’r and DMOS are both ramping up returns this fall to Kickstarter for new products.

“A Kickstarter audience is basically a test market,” said Susan Pieper, founder of DMOS. “You need to be able to prove there is consumer demand.”

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