TL:DR, we didn’t hit our forecast last year, and we’re ok talking about that.
It’s a funny beast, transparency – since we went out and crowdfunded ourselves, our forecasts are out there in the ether (and journalists’ hard drives). And when it’s time for us to post our annual accounts as a Financial Service Provider, our results are there for the world to see.
Not that we mind – transparency is our bread and butter. We truly, deeply believe that openness and accountability make the world a better place. (That said, it grates a bit when commenters on news stories about us can still hide behind a pseudonym, and frankly, behave like schoolyard bullies).
It’s true, we didn’t hit our forecast last year. For a whole bunch of reasons. Because educating companies through the process takes time, because we’d calculated our forecast on two strong months at the start of the year, because the market got crowded, because the first blush of being in a new industry faded, because we stick to our fee structure in the race to the discount barrel bottom, because it’s fucking hard work in start up land.
But the explanation for what happened in the past really isn’t important, what is important is what we’ve done since last financial year. Which, in start up time was light years ago.
- Launched an education programme to help companies through the process, CrowdfundingU – better supported, well prepared companies are more successful.
- Gotten two new board members to help build our strategy, Jessica and Mel, with expertise in financial markets, sales and marketing.
- Launched our lending platform, with Eat My Lunch hitting the ball out of the park on their Lunch Bond campaign. PledgeMe.Lend will enable more great NZ companies AND organisations access the funding they need.
- Changed our structure (with our team, not against them) to better match the evolving market and demands of our business.
- Had over 1,000 successful campaigns through the platform. Yep, 1,000+ campaigns have gotten funded through us.
And, we’re excited. Really excited. Tired, but excited.
Things like ParrotDog are happening, things like Eat My Lunch are happening, things like The SpinOff are happening. These are all campaigns, across our three types of crowdfunding, that have done what our platform does best: activate their own networks to make their plans happen. And, their plans are so much more than just about making some investor they’ve never met a 30 times return. They’re about strengthening communities, building brands, and making a change in the world (even if it’s a beer based change).
But, these campaigns can be hard to find, hard to nurture, and hard to support. So that’s where you come in.
We want to launch a new idea today: PledgeMe.Friends. We think there’s really nothing more powerful than our own crowd, you’ve shown us time and again that you back us when we ate our own dog food (twice), when we made a magazine, when we wanted a new board member, and when you all decided I seriously needed a holiday.
What we really need most right now is more companies and organisations we can help through project, equity and lending campaigns. That’s where you come in:
If you are the first person to shoulder tap a company to run a campaign, and they end up running a successful campaign, we’ll give you a $500 success fee (either direct to you or pledged towards the campaign for you). The campaign needs to meet its goal by its deadline, and it needs to raise more than $50,000.
How is this going to work?
- Fill out this form here.
- If you’re the first person to recommend that company, we’ll get in touch and ask for an intro (if you can do it)
- The more details about how we can help the better
- You could even help them get to their goal – support, share their campaign, be their cheerleader (with benefits).
Yep – you can be from the company. If you aren’t the first person on board to recommend someone we’ll let you know, and send a high-five your way.
The path to changing how New Zealanders do business was always going to be tough, and we’re so thankful to our crowd for supporting us. Here’s to the next great campaigns that come through our doors. Hopefully with your help, friends!