Trade finance services have received a significant boost from crowd funding in recent years. Crowd funding traditionally involves members of the public, as well as traditional investors, backing projects by buying shares for as little as a couple of pounds. The past year saw increasing awareness of this financing option among entrepreneurs and investors. Here are some of the success stories of 2014:
This video game was listed as holding the Guinness World Record in December 2014 as the largest crowd-funded project of any genre with over 667,000 backers. This project used crowd funding website Kickstarter as well as an independent website run by the developers.
This publishing platform features user-created digital contracts. Funding was raised via Bitcoin and was completed in September 2014.
The Coolest cooler completed its funding drive in August 2014 with over $13m raised, way ahead of its $50,000 target. The portable 60 litre cooler will contain a battery powered rechargeable blender, waterproof Bluetooth speaker, USB charger, cutting board and plates, among other features.
This digital music player has been developed using the FLAC audio file format. Digital audio compressed by FLAC’s algorithm can typically be reduced to 50–60 per cent of its original size. Originally aiming to raise just $800,000 on Kickstarter, the project completed fundraising in April 2014 with over $6 million.
A political fundraiser started by political activist Lawrence Lessig was run from an independent website. The fundraiser was run to push for a United States Congress dedicated to reforming campaign finance laws by 2016. The first $1 million goal was started on 1 May 2014 and was reached on 13 May 2014, and the second $5 million goal was reached on 4 July 2014.