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Crowdfunding in an increasingly mobile world

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What will crowdfunding look like in a mobile world? James Beshara, co-founder and CEO of Tilt, thinks he has that answer. Tilt’s main product is a mobile app that allows users to fund and create campaigns of their choosing. Campaign managers assign a minimum amount of funding, a “tilt point,” and the money is only collected if the tilt is successfully met. Collecting is totally free for the user; previously, Tilt charged 2.5 percent in fees for collection campaigns, but did away with that model in 2014.

In 2012, VentureBeat reported that “86% of [Tilt] campaigns are successful, and on average, raise almost twice as much as they need to tilt. Campaigns that reach 34% of their goal have a 99% chance of going all the way, and 38% of activity happens in the last few hours.”

Today, Tilt is growing by 40 percent month-to-month on college campuses and will be in nine countries by the end of the year. On Stanford’s campus, Tilt is becoming more and more ubiquitous in party and tailgate fundraising, social fundraising and selling merchandise. Some examples of Stanford’s tilts include: a GSB tailgate for the Big Game, a GSB group raising money for Syrian refugees and the Stanford rowing team selling hats.

tilt2
Tilt’s User Interface. Screengrab.

 

Students can also get involved with Tilt by becoming campus ambassadors. Ambassadors can win prizes for organizing events using Tilt and get premium features for free. Ambassadors also get first priority when Tilt throws large events on campus and can even earn the chance to attend Tilt’s Ambassador Summit in San Francisco.

Tilt focuses on donation crowdfunding despite the fact that several companies, such as CrowdFunder, have had great success in equity crowdfunding. The reason lies in the number of accessible users.

“0.3 – 0.5.% of the world population could tap into equity crowdfunding,” explained Beshara. “I’d much rather build a tool that can scale to everyone.”

Beshara doesn’t stress about other donation crowdfunding applications, such as Kickstarter or Indiegogo, either.

“We really view all crowdfunding as good crowdfunding,” he said. “Other players in the space are really good for education about the market,” Beshara pointed out.

Whether you’re a party planner looking to take the stress out of fundraising, or a budding entrepreneur looking for a high growth startup, this is one company to watch.

 

Know something cool about tech that we don’t? Contact Ben Penchas at bpenchas ‘at’ stanford.edu.

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