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Crowdfunding Social Enterprises for the Greater Good
© Image: Screenshot by Eric Mack/Crowdsourcing.org
editorial

Crowdfunding Social Enterprises for the Greater Good

Last month, crowdfunding portal Crowdfunder launched a new effort to connect social entrepreneurs with impact investors. That's all a fancy way of saying that Crowdfunder has setup a community on its site that allows people to contribute to for-profit companies that have a do-good element to their business model. 

The first two trial funding campaigns on the new Social Enterprise Hub were successful, meeting goals for This Shirt Helps, which allows donors to help a cause of their choice through buying a t-shirt, and LSTN, who gives the gift of hearing to a child attending deaf school for every pair of reclaimed wood headphones sold. 

The Social Enterprise Hub is an interesting team effort between Crowdfunder, the X PRIZE Foundation, Singularity University and others.

We caught up with Crowdfunder's Chance Barnett and asked him for an update on how the effort has been going since the launch. He sent us these responses:

- How it's been going thus far:

  • So far Crowdfunder has circled and engaged with over $100 million in impact investment capital for future impact investing on the site. This potential impact investment capital is made up of both funds and individuals. Examples - Toniic, Good Capital.
  • Brought on over 300 Crowdfunder users in the social enterprise space including social entrepreneurs, investors, teams and supporters.
  • Have received over 70 new companies signed up on Crowdfunder since the launch of Social Enterprise on Crowdfunder. 
  • Created a distribution channel for Social Enterprise of impact-minded people across our partners of around 600,000 individuals.
  • Identified a handful of high quality Social Enterprises who will be doing Investment Raises for Q1 on Crowdfunder (in partnership with our Broker-Dealer partner GATE Impact).

- What projects have been funded?

Through our trial run of the Social Enterprise Hub in December, we quickly saw our first two social enterprises achieve their funding goals in record time. In less than 56 hours,This Shirt Helps, which allows donors to help a cause of their choice through buying a t-shirt, was fully funded. LSTN, who gives the gift of hearing to a child attending deaf school for every pair of reclaimed wood headphones sold, received 100% of its funding in a little over a week.

- What's next for the hub

  • Curating great social enterprises through our contribution crowdfunding platform, and helping them mature intoinvestment-ready businesses.
  • Coalescing accredited impact investors and funds into our Social Enterprise Community and allowing them to discover these great social entrepreneurs.
  • Working with our existing Social Enterprise Partners (and onboarding new ones) to unlock the flow of capital within their communities. 
  • Building out our product to support the larger social enterprise community and social network around the world.

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