Crowdfunder MD Phil Geraghty talks about the company’s recent fundraise and what the future holds

Over the last few months, Crowdfunder has been fundraising for itself by asking investors to take a share in the business so that we can help thousands more projects across the UK and grow. We are delighted to welcome on board over 1,000 new shareholders, raising a total of £1.2m.

We wanted to take a moment to say hello to all of our new shareholders and welcome you to the Crowdfunder family. The money that you have invested will drive the growth of our platform and allow us to continue making incredible ideas happen.

We caught up with Phil Geraghty, Managing Director at Crowdfunder, to talk about our recent equity fundraise and what the future holds.

Firstly, what is the drive behind Crowdfunder?

We are an online platform, backed by an incredibly passionate team, with the sole mission to connect the projects that matter with the supporters that care – it’s as simple as that. We provide the space and opportunity for projects to showcase their ideas to the public, who can then pledge towards the cause.

We want to enable projects to activate the changes that they want to see, so we seek out and support the change makers that are offering new and sustainable approaches to some of life’s biggest challenges. Through this approach, we have already helped more than 80,000 projects, from communities and businesses through to individuals and social enterprises, to collectively raise over £45m. Also, in the last year alone, we’ve distributed over £1.9m as match pledges from partners to the projects that they care about – and we want to do more.

What is Crowdfunder’s plan for the future?

We are passionate about ideas that might just change the world, and we can already see the Crowdfunder community working on re-imagining how we take control of the kind of world that we want to live in.

Throughout 2017, we helped hundreds of great projects to raise the funds that they need to begin tackling issues in their community, such as poverty, education and unemployment, but because of the rising figures and ever-growing problems, we know that there is more to do. A lot of the projects that we have worked with are entirely replicable, and we think that every town could benefit. So, what we really want to do next is to crowdfund every town in the country. It sounds like a big dream, but why not?

Imagine a newly created town, designed from the grassroots up, and funded by the Crowd – all focussed on tackling the issues that society faces today. We believe that if each town in the UK made all of these ideas a reality, then together, we could make the world a better place – and the great thing is that we are perfectly positioned to have some real impact. Here’s just a glimpse of what could happen…

 


 

 

Cycling Without Age
Reducing isolation in the community

Tackling… the problem of limited mobility by offering free bike rides to local nursing home residents on a specially designed trishaw – as well as putting smiles on a lot of faces.

 

 

 

Made In Hackney
Community kitchen

Tackling… spiralling rates of lifestyle related diseases, inspiring people to make climate friendly and ethical food choices, giving people the skills to improve their employability prospects and also enhance their community – all through a community kitchen!

 

 

The Together Project
Uniting young and old

Tackling… loneliness and strengthening communities by creating joyful experiences that unite the young and elderly. This brought tears to a lot of eyes at Crowdfunder HQ.

 

 

The Gardeners Rest
Saving the community pub

Tackling… looming pub closure by offering the local community the chance to get involved and become shareholders in the pub. When communities take ownership of the things that matter most to them, they become stronger.

 

 

Sutton Community Farm
Veg box scheme

Tackling… financial sustainability on a local community farm. This can offer the opportunity for people from all walks of life to come together, gain a breather from their busy lives and improve health and wellbeing.

 

 

 

Borrow Don’t Buy
Library of things

Tackling… clutter and mass-production by enabling its users to have more, but own less. A Library Of Things gives access to items such as DIY tools, home improvement equipment and so much more – without the clutter and expense of buying and storing those things yourself.

 

 

 

Yoga For Refugees
Community well-being

Tackling… anxiety, depression, physical pain, low confidence, fear, malnutrition, extreme isolation, stress and exhaustion with community yoga.

 

 

 

Herne Hill Piano
Street happiness

Tackling… everyday smiles in the community – which we always need more of.

The bottom line is that when people come together, great things can happen, and it’s only together that we can achieve more – more projects, more supporters, more partners pledging and more ideas happening.

And how does the recent fundraise fit into this plan?

We are extremely proud to be owned by the Crowd and already had over 1,000 shareholders prior to our most recent fundraise. We wanted to offer more people the opportunity to join us on our journey, and are delighted to now have more than 2,000 investors alongside us every step of the way.

In this most recent equity fundraise, some of our cornerstone shareholders, such as Creative England and Nesta, re-invested and were joined by Broody, the business incubator and accelerator that is backed by leading London based advertising agency Mother. Broody agreed a deal to acquire a 5% stake in Crowdfunder and we are really looking forward to collaborating with these strategic investors as we move to a new stage of growth.

The investment will support our key growth drivers – helping more projects, getting supporters to pledge more and getting more partner funds to projects they care about.

With up to 200 projects a day coming to our platform, the demand for our services is continuing to grow and in order to service this need, we must grow at the same pace. Our responsibility will always be to help our community in reaching the people that support their idea and ultimately receive funding, and the funds raised mean that we are able to further develop our teach and our team to help thousands of more projects across the whole of the UK.

Thank you to everyone who joined our Crowd in 2017, and to all of our other shareholders. We can’t wait to see what 2018 has in store – let’s make ideas happen!

New crowdfunding support available through the Reach Fund
December: Crowdfunder Projects In The News