2,840 crowdsourcing and crowdfunding sites
Editor’s Note: Over the next few weeks, we’ll be highlighting some of the most successful, interesting, and innovative crowdfunding campaigns of 2012. This week’s category is most-funded campaigns, and we’re kicking the series off with the most successful project to date – the Pebble smart watch.
The Pebble smart watch is the most successfully-crowdfunded product to date, having brought in $10.2 million from nearly 70,000 backers on Kickstarter. Even the watch's makers probably didn't think such success was possible. The Pebble team had launched its Kickstarter page with a $100,000 goal – they hit it within two hours of going live. At the campaign's peak, backers were pouring in over $80,000 every hour.
The campaign ran over April and May and earned the Pebble team much visibility, making it the unofficial poster child for the crowdfunding industry. Since then, however, Pebble has been under scrutiny for failing to meet its September deadline, raising legitimate concerns over the lack of accountability project creators have to their backers. Just a few days ago, the team announced that watches wouldn’t be ready in time for Christmas.
When it’s all said and done, the Pebble watch will likely be remembered more for its failure to hit self-imposed deadlines (and for starting a serious conversation about the viability of crowdfunded products in general) than for its record-breaking Kickstarter campaign. But it is important to recognize Pebble for the visibility it brought to the industry, and for proving that crowdfunding could result in eight-figure sums.
We’ll leave you with a video of Pebble creator Eric Migicovsky at the LeWeb conference, in which he discusses his campaign’s success.
Keep checking back for some of the other successful campaigns of 2012!