CASH FOR answers
Crowd-funding’s driving many of tech’s Big Ideas, but the Indiegogo big-wig says it’s now about sourcing information as much as money
From personal drones and 3D printing to fitness bands and the internet of things, the current big trends in technology aren’t originating in massive firms, they’re the products of start-ups and crowd-funding. There have never been more interesting opportunities for the little guy or gal with a great idea to play side by side with the big boys.
There’s a real punk ethic to this movement, with individuals making huge in-roads into areas that have previously been controlled by a handful of very big players. It’s open, like YouTube or Android is open, cutting down the gatekeepers and getting money and power down into the hands of the people. It’s also not for nothing that 40 per cent of successfully funded projects are started by women; crowd-funding is reassuringly democratic.
But while it’s always nice to meet a funding target quickly, there’s a wider socio-economic picture here, and crowd-funding must evolve. With more than 190,000 Indiegogo projects to date and growing, we have seen increasingly professional serial entrepreneurs return and prosper. But we are also seeing more fresh-faced fundraisers with eyes wide, saying, “Wow, we raised all this money, now we have to actually make something.”