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Kickstarter Sets Off $7 Million Stampede for a Watch Not Yet Made

But he couldn’t even get a foot in the door, let alone secure any money for what he called the Pebble watch. So he turned to Kickstarter, a site where ordinary people back creative projects. Backers could pledge $99 and were promised a Pebble watch in return. Less than two hours after the project went up on the site, Mr. Migicovsky and his partners hit their goal of $100,000. “By that night, we were at $600,000,” said Mr. As of Friday afternoon, nearly 50,000 people had pledged close to $7 million — and there is still two weeks left before the fund-raising window closes. Pebble is the latest — and by far the largest — example of how Kickstarter, a scrappy start-up sprouted in the New York living room of its founders three years ago, is transforming the way people build businesses. The large amount of money that Pebble has raised — equivalent to what a young company would get in a second round of venture capital financing — also signifies a coming of age for Kickstarter. Mr. Mr. Mr.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/30/technology/kickstarter-sets-off-financing-rush-for-a-watch-not-yet-made.html?pagewanted=all

Related:  CrowdfundingNew Busyness

Obama Signs Bill to Ease Investing in Start-Ups Mr. Obama, surrounded by a bipartisan tableau of lawmakers and entrepreneurs, said the bill known as the JOBS Act, for Jump-Start Our Business Start-Ups, was a “potential game changer” for fledgling businesses in need of financing. Among other things, it would allow them to raise small sums from investors via the Internet. Ease of doing business index The ease of doing business index is an index created by the World Bank.[1] Higher rankings indicate better, usually simpler, regulations for businesses and stronger protections of property rights. Empirical research funded by the World Bank to justify their work show that the effect of improving these regulations on economic growth is strong.[2] "Empirical research is needed to establish the optimal level of business regulation—for example, what the duration of court procedures should be and what the optimal degree of social protection is.

2011: The Stats » The Kickstarter Blog 2011 was a year of milestones. In April we celebrated our second birthday by announcing $50 million in pledges. In July we reached 10,000 successfully funded projects. JOBS Act: Why are Democrats suddenly raising red flags? The Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act (JOBS) had everything going for it. It garnered more than 400 votes in the House of Representatives last week. It had the backing of Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell and was fast-tracked onto the Senate calendar by majority leader Harry Reid. President Obama, he of the veto pen, publicly expressed his support.

Ryan Morris, 28-Year-Old Activist Investor Ryan Morris spent a week steeling himself for the showdown. Then 27 years old, he was in his first campaign as an activist investor, trying to wrest control of a small company named InfuSystem (INFU), which provides and services pumps used in chemotherapy. In the meeting, Morris would confront InfuSystem’s chairman and vice chairman, two men in their 40s, and tell them that as a shareholder, he thought the company was heading in the wrong direction. Morris is competitive—his high school rowing teammates nicknamed him “Cyborg,” and he took a semester off college to race as a semi-pro cyclist—but face-to-face confrontation wasn’t something he relished. “I like the thrill of the hunt, but not the kill,” he says.

Peer Lending Grows as Small Biz Option NEW YORK (MainStreet) -- When John Good, owner of the Bubbles Galore Car Wash in Davison, Mich., went to his local bank last year to get a $16,000 loan to expand into the self-serve dog washing business, he was denied. First Place Bank, a subsidiary of First Place Financial in Warren, Ohio, already held the note for Good's original $500,000 Small Business Administration start-up loan, but the bank required massive documentation and fees -- requirements Good felt were too costly, time consuming and frankly, annoying, given the amount. "The amount of money we were requesting didn't merit the amount of work and back-end costs," Good says. That's when Good heard about peer-to-peer lending. Peer lending is not necessarily new, but there are a growing number of business borrowers turning to them -- in part because, as interest rates remain near record lows, investors are looking for options that will make decent returns.

A Proposal to Allow Small Private Companies to Get Investors Online The Obama administration, not surprisingly considering its own success in gathering small donations during his campaign for the presidency, is supporting crowdfunding, a financing model that relies on collecting small sums of money from many people over the Internet. Crowdfunding has the sort of populist, common-sense appeal that resonates with free-market libertarians and champions of the working class. By marrying online social networks with finance, this model offers a more democratic model of finance, in which individuals can directly fund other individuals or businesses that they deem worthy, without going through a bank or Wall Street middleman. It’s the sort of person-to-person (or P2P, in industry jargon) funding that characterized financial transactions for millennia, before our mediated, securitized financial system took hold.

Forward Vision: Financial Markets That Promote Long-Term Value Despite the lessons of the financial crisis, markets remain focused on the same short-term thinking that helped create the problem in the first place. Shares in U.S. publicly traded companies are held for an average of seven months, down from seven years two generations ago. Alcatel- Lucent CEO Ben Verwaayen described this phenomenon to us: “Winners and losers are measured sometimes in a matter of weeks and months.” Even pension fund managers, whose overall charge is to steward assets over decades rather than quarters, are subject to near- term performance pressures that cause them to “churn” increasing portions of their portfolios. Further exacerbating the problem is the ever-shortening length of CEO tenure, which has been cut in half, from eight years to four, in the past two decades.

A social history of crowdfunding Many refer to crowdfunding as a “new phenomenon” (or – at worst – the “new bubble”). However, it is not as new as we may think; as a concept, it has been around for some centuries already. The novelty lies in the technologies and the mindset that are giving it a new momentum, technologies and mindset that we will consider in this chronological record of the main events leading to what we now refer to as crowdfunding.

AP took it to the wire but needs to rethink its role The Associated Press didn't know what it stepped in when it sent a lawyer's letter to the blog Drudge Retort (a Drudge Report parody) demanding that it take down headlines and excerpts from wire-service stories as short as 33 words long. This set off a blogstorm as many bloggers - me included - accused AP of the highest web crime: not getting it. The confrontation ended in a stand-down with no precedents or policies set regarding copyright, fair use and blog excerpts.

Category:Peerfunding This wiki section is dedicated to the topic of "How do we make Peer Production sustainable? Why It Is Crucial that Peer Production Companies Refuse Venture Capital Investments Also read: Podcast: Bauwens, Kleiner, Restakis on Cooperative, Commons-Based Venture Funding Donations-based business model Crowdfunding business model Freemium as a business model

The building block of journalism is no longer the article The old building block of journalism — the article — is proving to be inadequate in the current onslaught of news. I’ll argue here that the new building block is the topic. The story was all we had before — it’s what would fit onto a newspaper page or into a broadcast show. Top 40 Platforms for Crowdfunding Social Change This post is a guest blog by Josef Davies-Coates and it originally appeared on the P2P Foundation blog. Crowdfunding is a new word for an old idea. The Oxford English dictionary defines it as “the practice of funding a project or venture by raising many small amounts of money from a large number of people, typically via the Internet”. Crowdfunding’s poster child, Kickstarter, launched in April 2009.

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