Roughly two thirds of the pledges made on Kickstarter are from the U.S. Is it the crowdfunding nation?
Last week Kickstarter announced that it reached $1 billion in pledges worldwide since it was founded almost five years ago.
The pledges came from 5.7 million people in 224 countries and funded projects in all seven continents. Even one in Antarctica that raised $3,021 to bring New York pianist Kimball Gallagher to perform a concert. (Gallagher only needed $2,500 to fund his project.)
While international projects like Gallagher’s have found success on the crowdfunding site (There were 11 backers from Antarctica as well), roughly two thirds of the pledges on Kickstarter came from investors within the United States.
Since April 28, 2009, people from the U.S. pledged $663.3 million, while money from the next nine countries with the most pledges combined reached just about $190.9 million.
Three of the four largest investors also are from the U.S., while the fourth is from Norway.
The amount of money flowing from the U.S. makes it seem the dominant startup country. In fact, a 2012 Startup Ecosystem Report by Startup Genome showed that U.S. cities Silicon Valley, Los Angeles, Seattle, New York City and Boston were ranked five of the top six startup ecosystems worldwide. Tel Aviv was able to sneak in as the second best startup ecosystem and London, for its part, took seventh. The report does note, however, that Tel Aviv does have the most startups per capita and is a very close second to Silicon Valley.
In Kickstarter, just 12,799 Israeli investors (about 0.001% of the population) pledged $2.17 million. While in the U.S., 0.01% of the population, or roughly 3.8 million people invested in Kickstarter campaigns.
The higher percentage of funding in the U.S. could be because Kickstarter is an American organization, founded in Brooklyn, NYC. Maybe companies in other countries are using different avenues for crowdfunding.
Maybe, however, the amount flowing in the U.S. is more a reflection of the American Dream than a reflection on the nation’s startup ecosystem. The U.S. has been known as a land of opportunity, so maybe people are just more likely to try to grasp those opportunities when Kickstarter seems to make it so easy.
The report on Kickstarter’s $1 billion raised does not note how many of the projects succeed or how many fundings are for projects that last long term. It would be interesting to see a breakdown of the successful campaigns to see what trends appear, geographically or otherwise. Maybe after the next $1 billion.