Kickstarter is a crowd funding website for creative projects that launched in New York as a tool to help community arts projects in 2009. Kickstarter has a funding success rate of 44% and has launched over 62,000 projects raising $229m.
Unlike many UK based crowd funding platforms, investors on Kickstarter do not receive equity in the ideas they fund, instead people set a fund raising goal for their project and investors receive rewards in proportion to their financial involvement. For example, an iPhone dock design project called 'Evoltution Dock' promised to give anyone who pledged $59 or more an iPhone dock. They were able to raise more than $1.4m from over 12,000 backers.
Kickstarter has funded a variety of projects from films, consumer products, video games and food related goods, including a point-and-click adventure game, called Double Fine Adventure, that raised $3m and the Pebble, an electronic paper smart watch that raised of $10m.
Currently, UK based projects are not accepted on Kickstarter because it uses Amazon's payment system which a US bank account. Despite the restrictions, some UK businesses have managed to receive funding through Kickstarter by partnering with a US organisation. For example, the company behind the video game Carmageddon, Stainless Games, based in the Isle of Wight, raised $625,143 through the site to create a sequel.
Kickstarter will face strong competition in the UK as there are already several other crowd-funding options available, such PeopleFund.It, Crowdcube and Crowdfunder.