You can find here interesting trends, people and developments in the field of Crowdfunding. The blog is maintained by Karsten Wenzlaff and was started for a conference on the “Future of Crowdfunding” in April 2013.

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Krautreporter is an Reward-Based Platform in Germany which has specialized on Journalism. Today, the team behind Krautreporter and a network of 28 journalists have started a new project: “Krautreporter – Das Magazin.“. They aim to raise 900.00 Euros from 15.000 supporters each paying 60 Euros for a subscription of one year.

Bettervest is a German Energy-Funding Platform which specializes on projects improving energy efficiency. Bettervest uses a Mezzanine Equity Instrument called “Partiarisches Nachrangdarlehen, which is very popular in German Crowdinvesting. It works like a loan, but the settlement of the loan plus interest depend on the long term success of the underlying business.

Currently, the “Blockkraftheizwerk Lübeck” is being funded on Bettervest. The power station will produce local energy from renewable source, thus using less energy, reducing the energy costs of local tenants and being able to sell off excess energy on the market.

Kids have access to all kinds of digital devices and parents know that. An important part of learning about the Internet is also learning how to use email.

The Belgian Startup Maily wants to create an email service for kids: Children can create messages using simple tools like digital pencils, brushes, photos, backgrounds, stickers, and their most commonly used expressions. Maily also allows parents and loved ones to reply to the child’s messages.

Have you ever come back from a Supermarket Shop and wondered what to do with all the plastic, wrapping and packaging? Sara Wolf and Milena Glimbovski are trying to create a Supermarket without any packaging and have started a Crowdfunding Campaign on Startnext. Startnext is a reward-based platform in Germany and has raised 10 Million Euros so far.

The Chinese Crowdfunding Platform Zhongchou is part of the UCF Group, which provides financial services in China. Zhongchou was started in February 2013. The UCF Group also hosts the Peer-to-Peer Lending Platform FirstP2P.

On May 22nd, UCF is hosting a Crowdfunding Summit for the Chinese and International Crowdfunding Scene. Currently they are crowdfunding the summit itself, trying to reach 300.000 Yen.

The list of speakers sounds like the Who is Who of the Chinese Crowdfunding Scene, with some international platsforms such as Pozible and Fund.ly also taking place. The German Crowdfunding Network will be represented by Andrea Funk.

Zhongchou300billionspeaker

Zhongchou300billion

Vidameter combines two, actually three, interesting new trends: Crowdfunding for Startups, Crowdfunding for Prototypes, and Crowdfunding for Medical Purposes. The Vidameter is a wristband for checking all kinds of body signals and thus monitoring your health. The company based in Graz (Austria) is currently Crowdfunding on Indiegogo.

The sum seems to ambitious: 1 Million Dollars. Currently it has reached around 3500 Dollars.

My friend Peter Ruhenstroh-Bauer is actively involved in a Non-Profit called “Gesicht zeigen“. “Gesicht zeigen” fights xenophobia, racism and intolerance through various campaigns. The founder Uwe-Karsten Heye, who besides having a long career in the administration in Germany and who is also my former boss, is also actively speaking out against a further tightening of European refugee laws.

The political system in the United States needs a refor – too much money in the system and despite the grassroots campaign from previous elections, there is a growing frustration that the stalmate in Congress needs pressure from the outside to be removed. Lawrence Lessig and his Mayone.us-Campaign is trying to create a new Super-PAC to end all Super-Pacs and movie maker Holly Mosher is funding a movie called Pay2Play on Kickstarter which deals with the issue as well.

“One day my friend successfully raised $1,000 overnight for his cat’s veterinary bills and I thought, if he can get $1,000 for his pussy, then I can get $8,000 for mine!” This sentence from Samantha Allens story on Salon.com is perfectly suited to describe the experience of project owners raising funds for medical purposes. Medical Crowdfunding is an emerging trend, as highlighted in a recent article by DerSpiegel.

Samanta Allens campaign is unique in many ways. She raised 10,862 US-Dollars on Indiegogo, far above her goal of 8,000 US-Dollars. The sum is only a portion of the money she needed for her surgery to transform her gender, but in retrospect the online support through the campaign was the most powerful impression left on her.

Crowdfunding for Games is a huge market and growing fast. It fits so much with Crowdfunding – a loyal community which wants to support developers and buy rewards, which directly benefit them such as additional level or in-game-gadgets. Crowdinvesting for Games is a new trend – funders see also the business value behind producing games. Crowdlending for games is something entirely new.