Crowdfunding: The Hope A Crowd Can Bring
Crowdfunding is the new bank loan, without the pressures of repayments. Crowdfunding is an online method of fundraising that allows people all over the world to put their ideas or pitches onto a digital platform. These pitches are then available for people worldwide to see, and to decide whether or not they would like to support the campaign. There are 4 main types of crowdfunding methods available, rewards-based, donation-based (backabuddy), and equity-based (Uprise.Africa), and debt based, each with its own unique purpose.
In South Africa, crowdfunding is still a relatively new concept and with many South Africans still skeptical about making online transactions, it is very much a rising industry. Rewards-based crowdfunding has become a growing force within South Africa, with Thundafund at the forefront. Thundafund is the brainchild of entrepreneur Patrick Schofield, who founded the company in 2014.
The way that rewards-based crowdfunding differs from any other form, is that in exchange for the money raised, the project creator is expected to give something back to the backer in the form of a reward. These rewards can vary, anything from a thank you card to a tangible product will suffice. However, when selecting rewards for your Thundafund campaign, it is important that you keep both your project and your potential backer (audience) in mind.
What makes Thundafund different from other rewards-based crowdfunding platforms is that it has been designed for Africa. As a South African based company, Thundafund has a patriotic commitment to Africa and strongly believe that by activating their own communities that they can build prosperity. Thundafund prides itself on the extensive levels of support that they offer , whether this be in the form of workshops, private marketing consultations or assisting project creators in setting up their campaign, as it is important to them that each campaign reaches some sort of victory.
Thundafund strives to show full transparency, which is why they have a tipping point system. The tipping point is the first goal that a project must reach in terms of fundraising in order to be funded. This tipping point is selected by the project creator and is the minimum amount that the project creator needs to get their project off the ground. Thereafter, there is a dream goal, which is the ideal amount that the project creator would like to raise. Should the tipping point not be reached, neither Thundafund nor the campaign creator will receive any money, and the backer is refunded.
Milestones are another key part of the Thundafund philosophy, these milestones are there to clearly outline how the money raised through the campaign will be spent. This adds to the transparency aspect, which is important to the brand as it links so closely to the trust of their backers. As crowdfunding is a new idea in South Africa, trust is key in building an innovative future.
Over the years, Thundafund has had many success stories in both the entrepreneurial space and various other sectors. The Honest Chocolate Cafe started a crowdfunding campaign in 2014, and through their efforts raised R66 000.00 to help them start their cafe. Another thriving business that made its debut through crowdfunding, Proof Wine Bar in Somerset West, raised over R200 000.00 to start their venture. Thundafund has an ever growing captive audience that reaches people on an international scale and with start up capital becoming harder to obtain every year, crowdfunding is the light to guide entrepreneurs into the future.