Finland's IndieGoGo Success Beddit Trips at the Finish Line

In October of 2013, Finland's most promising and successful crowdfunding round reached an end when Espoo-based Beddit closed their IndieGoGo campaign with an unseen national achievement of $500,000 in received funds. We covered them, twice, closely following the steps of their success. It's time to check where they're at now.

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Airtame Hits $1 million

Not long ago, I remember writing something about an exceptional startup reaching, breaching and exceeding their goals. The group of bright minded Danes who make up Airtame have been busy adding more and more perks into their particularly successful crowdfunding campaign in IndieGoGo. First at $200,000, then at $350,000 and then all the way to $1 million, Airtame has been reaching their extra goals one by one, long before their campaign reached its end.

Their original goal of $160k seems almost like a joke by now.

How did this happen?

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No More Woof aims to read dogs' minds - Surpasses Crowdfunding goal

Earlier this month No More Woof was announced as a IndieGoGo project. The idea is simple – use modern EEG sensors to read the emotions from the dogs brain, and translate that to something which can be communicated thru speakers.

‘Among the patterns we have found are “I’m Tired”, “I’m excited” and possibly “I’m Hungry” and the clearly intense brain activity when a dog sees a new face, that we translate into: “Who ARE you?”.’ they state.

The idea, initiated by enthusiasts, started as a short video. It quickly got a lot of attention, and the IndieGoGo crowdfunding campaign, since the start on the 16th of December, is currently at 150% of the funding requested. And there still are 49 days to go.

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InstrumentChamp hits its crowdfunding target

Slush was a busy time for a lot of people, walking around trying to meet and greet as many people as possible, promoting businesses, and standing in long queues for coffee or food. One of the things that kept the team at InstrumentChamp busy was the launch of their crowdfunding campaign which just last Friday reached its funding target.

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Invesdor To Take On The Growing Crowdfunding Market

Editor's note: This is a sponsored post in co-operation with Invesdor

If you have been following the recent crowdfunding developments, then you would probably agree that this year was the year of crowdfunding worldwide. Not only did the first part of the jobs act get passed, but the overall stats and growth speak for themselves.

This year, the global crowdfunding market is expected to hit $5.1 billion of which $166 million would be in equity crowdfunding. In 2012, the amount was $2.7 billion and $116 million respectively.

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Legal Challenges Related to Crowdfunding: Volume 3

Editor's note: This is a guest post by Antti Hemmilä, of Attorneys at Law Borenius, and our go-to person when it comes to the legal side of crowdfunding. See is past articles here, and here.

I had a chance to write two blog posts about crowdfunding last year, published on 23 October and 26 November 2012. There were no plans for a sequel but this third blog post came up rather spontaneously in an effort to give some advice and guidance to companies thinking of (equity) crowdfunding themselves, how equity crowdfunding affects your company, and what you need to consider when running a company with a lot of shareholders located in different jurisdictions.

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How Hook Solves a Problem With a Piece of Plastic

Every once in a while a product startup comes along that puts a smile on my face.

Whether it's due to the funky design, the clever copywriting (strong as an ant, smart as an elephant), the successful $20,000 crowdfunding project, its sheer simplicity, or the fact the inventor spent months researching the idea in public restrooms around Europe, I'm not too sure.

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Beddit Raised Over $500k In The Most Successful Crowdfunding Campaign in Finland

Beddit, the sleep pattern and wellness tracker Indiegogo campaign came to an end last week, when they announced that they have raised a whopping $503 472. This makes them the most successful reward-based crowdfunding campaign coming out of Finland.

The concept is simple, you put a thin film of sensors between your bed sheet and the bed and it does the rest. It is so sensitive that it can detect your heartbeat, breathing patterns, movements and then use the data to display it all in the app.

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Is CrowdFunding Moving To Pitching Events?

Startup pitching events have become sort-of a cliche, they are all alike and there really needs to be an improvement to the whole process. Investors want to get a better understanding if the startup would be a good fit for them, the audience is interested to know if people are actually going to use it and the founders want to get quality feedback from the audience, the judges (if any) and investors.

This seems like a very straightforward problem and for the most part it is solved by de facto. However as we have seen with Catchbox, small additions to events can make them a lot more exciting.

So when we heard about the Estonian based Funderbeam, it caught our eye. Their current plan is to provide an app for pitch-feedback that collects votes & ratings from the audience, generates leader boards and statistics. However they plan to do a lot more with it.

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Nordic CrowdFunding is Picking Up Speed While Going International

Editor's note: This is a sponsored post to alert you to the crowdfunding options in the region. Research before investing - early stage companies are high risk.

With the jobs act hitting the switch earlier this month, equity crowdfunding has been a rather hot topic of discussion and we have some great news from our local equity crowdfunding partners - Invesdor and FundedByMe.

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Crowdfunders and Accelerators Unite as Fundedbyme and Accelerace Announce Partnership

As equity crowdfunding is starting to become more widely accepted, even newer ways of funding and starting a company emerge. Take a look at the recently announced partnership between the originally Swedish crowdfunding company FundedByMe and the Danish accelerator program - Accelerace.

The two companies intend to both “push and pull” startups from and to one another. In other words, you could go through the Accelerace accelerator program and then immediately jump onto the FundedByMe crowdfunding platform in a few easy steps. 

Alternatively, you could go to FundedByMe directly and then take part in the accelerator program after you are done. You could even include you intentions in your pitch, for example.

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Norwegian Crowdfunding Platform Fønd Gets Projects Moving

Catching our attention this week is Fønd, a new option for Norwegians looking to crowd fund their projects.

A criticism often leveled at Norwegian entrepreneurs is their focus on the home market and lack of international ambition early enough, so is a crowdfunding platform in the Norwegian language really a positive development for the community?

"We see a market because of the lack of Government support to Norwegian entrepreneurs, especially within tech, where we are miles behind the girl next door, Sweden" says co-founder Jon Erik Andersen.

"She is faster, tighter and quicker than the old Norwegian fish. Sweden has delivered world wide innovative services like Spotify and Skype. By building innovative new services for the Norwegian market, we believe we can achieve a change, a more open Norwegian environment for developing and supporting new great innovations through open innovation. It is too hard to cross the chasm in Norway today and Fønd will make that gap smaller."

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Jolla Sold Out?

Jolla is in the news again, and they are telling us that the first batch of the Jolla smartphones was fully booked. What this means exactly is hard to decode, as we unfortunately do not have the exact numbers rather than the fact that the orders came from over 136 countries. At the very least it means that there has been enough interest to continue production.

UPDATE: We now know for sure that a Jolla spokesperson said that the size of the production batch for a mobile device vendor of this size is typically 50,000 units. This however does not theoretically mean that they received 50 000 pre-orders, just that they had to actually place an order with the factories for at least 50 000 units.

This is definitely great news for the Finland-based smartphone company. Tomi Pienimäki, the current CEO of Jolla commented: "We are delighted to see this great worldwide interest towards our very first device. When you see someone wearing an ‘I am the First One’ T-shirt, you see a proud future owner of Jolla.”

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Crowdfunding for the Market, Not the Money

It should be the perfect storm: take one hotbed of ICT start-ups, a culture of entrepreneurship and a culture of early adoption when it comes to the latest tech development, and add reward-based crowdfunding. ICT entrepreneurs should be flocking to crowdfund their latest app, game or innovation. And yet they’re not; while arts and culture has embraced crowdfunding as a way for filmmakers to stay independent, Swedish ICT entrepreneurs aren’t as interested – when it comes to the local sites, that is.

Instead, big names like Volumental and Memoto are flocking to Kickstarter. On the face of it, this might be because the reach of the platform is larger – and, indeed, that perception exists. According to a recent report on the state of crowdfunding among ICT entrepreneurs in Sweden, ICT entrepreneurs do think that there is more money to be made on American platforms like Kickstarter and Indiegogo.

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Equity Crowdfunding Companies To Invest Into During Summer

Editor's note: This is a sponsored post to alert you to the crowdfunding options in the region. Research before investing - early stage companies are high risk.

Crowdfunding is breaking records nearly monthly, which is hopefully an indication of things to come. Just take a look at Star Citizen, a crowd funded MMO game that claimed over $14 million this month or the crowd funded smart phone that can double as a laptop, aiming to raise $32 million.

Our region is not lagging behind, in fact when it comes to equity crowd funding we are definitely ahead of the curve. This time around we are going to take a look at some numbers from FundedByMe and Invesdor.

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Stockholm’s Makers get a Crowdfunded Start – and a Great New Space

Noah, who recently turned 17, is the youngest board member at Stockholm Makerspace.

Makerspaces, Hackerspaces and FabLabs seem to fit much the same mould: a communal space where like-minded, creative folk can share space, machinery and, most importantly, ideas. The two key characteristics of such a space are, first, the community and, second, the gadgets.

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June Nordic CrowdFunding Overview

Editor's note: This is a sponsored post to alert you to the crowdfunding options in the region. Research before investing - early stage companies are high risk.

Equity crowdfunding movement is clearly the way of the future and what is great about it is that the Nordic region is at the forefront of it. With two fully operational equity crowdfunding companies, FundedByMe and Invesdor, the region is ahead of many others that are still awaiting regulatory permissions.

The competition will increase, however, so both of them are active with introductions of new companies and services. Today we are brining the newest equity crowdfunding investment opportunities by Invesdor and FundedByMe:

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Stockholm's Reupp Crowdfunds Good TV Back On The Air

There's some sort of cruel inefficiency in the world when good TV shows get canceled only to be replaced by some mindless nonsense. Instead of just signing another internet petition the next time a show got canceled, Stockholm-based Reupp is organizing fans as a lobbying group to come together and support their show creators.

With this mission in mind, they've put together a crowdfunding mechanism to allow fans to pool together their money to donate to the producers or creators of the show. Founder and CEO John Noren explains that the point of it is to send money where it makes the most sense. He says in their research they've come across too much bureaucracy from Hollywood's side, and rather than negotiating with network executives themselves it makes sense to become a lobbying power under a creator or producer that can point to the Reupp campaign and lobby on its behalf.

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If You Bike, You Probably Need This 'Smart' Brakelight

We like to keep our eyes on crowdfunding projects from the region, so this time around we bring to you Velodroom, a startup from Estonia that just launched a campaign on Kickstarter.

The big idea? Smart bicycle brake light. How can a light be smart? For one it knows when to shut itself off (Hint: when the bike is stationary) and when to start blinking again. It also detects deceleration, allowing it to act as a brake light.

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Crowdfunded Film On Swedish Tax Waste Allows Filmmaker To Stay Independent

Before Martin Borgs joined the crowdfunding scene, the largest amount raised for a Swedish film was 393,646 SEK (€45,000) in a month. On FundedByMe, the largest amount raised for any project on the “classic crowfunding” site was 257,914 SEK. Borgs made more than that in the first 2 weeks that his latest film project was on FundedByMe. He raised 550,000 (€63,000) SEK in total to “granska slöseri med skattepengar” or examine the waste of tax money in Sweden.

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A Kickstarter Kick Start

By now, most Nordic entrepreneurs are likely to have had a brush with crowdfunding; whether because they’ve considered it themselves or because they’re one of the “friends, family and fools” who’ve funded another’s dream project.

One of the biggest international crowdfunding sites is, of course, Kickstarter. With rewards as incentives and the draw of international names like Zach Braff and innovative tech like Memoto, it’s no surprise that Kickstarter has moved away from being merely a new way to collect contributions to a viral internet marketing sensation.

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Crowdfunding Startup Take Space Aims To Give A Voice To Even The Most Controversial Views

"There comes a time, when silence is betrayal" proclaims a Swedish anti-human trafficking website. It is one of the first projects to attempt to publicise their campaign using Swedish crowdfunded advertising site Take Space.

Nordic countries have been among the cutting edge few who’ve embraced the democratising potential of crowdsourcing in governance. Finnish Avoin Ministerio or “Open Ministry”, for example, crowdsources proposals for laws and agenda issues for consideration in the Finnish Parliament. The crowdsourced Icelandic constitution (and its current limbo) has become legend the world over.

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Traditional Investment Money Goes Crowdfunding: Taaleritehdas Invests Into Finnish Crowdfuning Company - Invesdor

Invesdor, a Finnish equity crowdfunding company, announced today that they received an investment from Taaleritehdas, a local wealth management company with over €2.6 billion under management. It was immediately interesting to point out that the money was not raised through their own platform. Instead it was a deal in which Taaleritehdas Asset Management Ltd acquired Invesdor shares.

Companies such as Fundedbyme chose to go the other way and crowdfunded themselves in order to showcase their system. So we reached out to Lasse Mäkela, the CEO of Invesdor for comments.

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Nordic Equity Crowdfunding Raised More Than €2.5 Million And A List Of Companies To Invest Into

Editor's note: This is a sponsored post to alert you to the crowdfunding options in the region. Research before investing - early stage companies are high risk.

We are back with our crowdfunding overview of the Nordics, bringing you the most interesting cases from FundedByMe and Invesdor. If you are still not on the wave of equity crowdfunding, then here is your chance to get acquainted with the possibilities in the region.

While many are waiting for the equity crowdfunding enabling JOBS act to pass in the USA, everything is already up and running in the nordics. Besides, we have recently heard from reliable sources that the JOBS act is not as certain to pass as many would think. Which would put the Nordic equity crowdfunding initiative in the spotlight, especially considering that it has already raised nearly €2.5 million in a very short lifespan.

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The Region Is Going Green: Click & Grow, Indoor Garden & Fresh Wall Are Crowdfunding To Bring Plants Into Your Home Or Office

Here is an overview of the 'growth', in the very literal meaning of the world, startups of the region. These companies are trying to bring the joyful experience of being a gardener into everybody's home and office. Without actually any need for doing anything about it.

After all, three startups from the ArcticStartup region, are seeking crowdfunding in the region: Estonia's Click & Grow, Finlands Fresh Wall and Indoor Garden. Click & Grow as well as Indoor Garden are aiming to allow you to grow a variety of plants at home without any gardening knowledge, skills or time investments. Fresh Wall, on the other hand, as the name suggests is going to put a huge wall of self-watering plants in your house or office.

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Nordic Startup Companies Anyone Can Invest In

Editor's note: This is a sponsored post to alert you to the crowdfunding options in the region. Research before investing - early stage companies are high risk.

Ever want to invest in startups? We've got another awesome roundup of projects coming out of the Nordics that you can invest in. In addition to companies on Invesdor crowdfunding platform, we now are also bringing you startups companies from FundedByMe.

And remember, these projects are 'equity crowdfunded' companies looking for investment, which we're lucky to offer. Compared to Kickstarter, which gives you things like t-shirts or pre-orders in return for donations, with these equity crowdfunding platforms you're actually investing in these companies and receive shares in the company in return. In the U.S. people are getting excited about the JOBS act making equity crowdfunding legal for U.S. companies, but the Nordic countries are ahead of the game.

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Crowdfunding Site Launched By Accident And Successfully Funded 5 Projects

The story of the Finnish crowdfunding company is an interesting one. They were not planning to launch until later in 2013, but thanks to a series of events that took place in 2012 they were basically forced into it. The market was asking for it, they listened and have already successfully funded 5 pilot projects.

We got together with Tanja Jänicke from to talk about their story and plans for the future. Jänicke revealed that originally when they launched a informational website on the 23rd of August 2012, it was simply to announce their plans and to get a feel for the market. The idea was not to start any crowdfunding projects just yet.

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Climb Walls, Drink Beer And Travel On Monorails Thanks To Crowdfunding

Editor's note: This is a sponsored post to bring you crowdfunding options in the region.

Just last night Climbstation successfully reached their investment goals. This is the second company in addition to NetOutlet to complete their equity crowdfunding goals through Invesdor. Climbstation is already a recognized company that is disrupting the wall climbing industry by allowing for a rotating wall that can fit anywhere. Removing the need for ropes, harnesses, instructors and extremely high ceilings. They are looking for financing in order to introduce one more model, expand on marketing, go to worlds biggest exhibitions and finding distributions channels, while lowering production costs. They have reached their minimum goal of EUR 50 000 last night and there are still 2 days to go. So if you want to be a shareholder in Climbstation, you can still invest. They are looking to secure a maximum of EUR 90 000.

This was definitely good news for the Helsinki based Invesdor that is starting to show traction with crowdfunding investors. Of course you need a great selection of companies in order to find one that you are willing to invest into and today they also announced two new projects: Bryggeri and Bubblemotion.

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Lund-based Crowdme Offers Filmmakers A Dedicated Crowdfunding Platform

It seems like crowdfunding is half of what I'm writing about these days, but it is an industry in its infancy that's really starting to pop in the Nordics. By now you might think you have every crowdfunding platform figured out, but Lund-based startup, Crowdme, is focusing on the video niche, and is building a unique platform by focusing on that specific area.

By focusing completely on video projects, Crowdme can help video makers in two ways. First is the obvious- they can help crowdfund to pre-finance movies, but additionally can also offer video advertising afterwards to bring in additional revenues. This advertising feature is not live quite yet - they're not generating the views to make it worthwhile - but is an interesting revenue path I haven't seen taken by a crowdfunding platform.

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Crowdfunding Roundup: Invesdor Launches In Swedish Markets

Editor's note: This is a sponsored post to bring you crowdfunding options in the region.

This article is a roundup of companies anyone can invest into, but this time it's also a chance to share some timely news. Invesdor has now launched two companies from Sweden you can invest in, which is their first launch outside of Finland. Currently Finnish, Swedish, Estonian and Danish companies can raise up to 1.5 million euros through Invesdor, while money can be raised from anyone in the world. So far 123,000 euros has been invested via Invesdor service in Finland since May 2012.

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