Signs of growth: An exploration of UK businesses who successfully use crowdfunding

Emma Green, Arun Sukumar, Kaushik Pandya

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review


    Whilst both academic interest and public funds are directed at scalable businesses in the interests of achieving job creation and economic growth, recent growth in the number of businesses in the UK is primarily from non-employing businesses. Concurrently, Rewards-based Crowdfunding (RBCF) has emerged with the potential to support emerging businesses in addressing the gap in access to finance. Emerging literature on this new source of finance has to date not considered the characteristics of businesses using Rewards-Based Crowdfunding. This paper is an exploration of businesses in the UK that have been successful in raising funds through the Kickstarter crowdfunding platform, a platform that is the largest worldwide. Kickstarter is cited as a source of seed capital, enabling entrepreneurs to create ongoing businesses and established creative businesses to test the market. The investigation employs a two-stage methodology, the first stage involves a systematic literature review on RBCF and the second stage is engaged in the exploration of the businesses that have successfully engaged with RBCF. A qualitative and interpretative approach is used in this study. An examination is then undertaken of eight cases that have systematically used RBCF platforms to achieve their business objectives. Data is drawn from the web pages of the campaign, associated social media pages. These cases are analysed and compared to understand whether RBCF plays an important role in delivering competitive advantage in early growth stages. The paper contributes to the debate around the use of Internet-based crowdfunding and its ability to provide alternative funding to entrepreneurs.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationProceedings of the 12th European Conference on Innovation and Entrepreneurship, ECIE 2017
    Publication statusPublished (VoR) - 21 Sept 2017


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