Although crowdfunding platforms have become increasingly the rage in countries like the United States and United Kingdom, they have not yet taken off to the same degree in many other countries. Sweden, for example, where a pair of researchers from the Stockholm School of Economics found in 2013 that the total amount of reward and donation-based funding provided in the Swedish market from 2011-2013 likely did not exceed approximately $850K. Thus, the market in this country remains relatively open and CharityStorm aims to fill it.
In order to use the platform, non-profits create a campaign and then send it out to their friends or connections by Facebook, Twitter, or other social-media. From there, supporters give through SMS or directly on the campaign’s page. One of the aspects that I find interesting about this service is that campaigns can run considerably longer than similar campaigns on other platforms. Whereas campaigns on Indiegogo or Kickstarter may run for just over a month, campaigns here can run for more than 4. From the perspective of the non-profits, one of the more appealing aspects of the platform is that they can try it out for free, only paying a fee if they take in any funds.
Since the service launched back in November 2013, they have attracted about 200 non-profits, as well as about 25,000 end-users, generating roughly $240K in donations. They have thus far relied on grants totalling 1.2 million Swedish Kronas (about 130K Euro), but are now hoping to do their first investment round.
The startup is planning to roll out a new version of their platform this summer, but have broader plans, as well. CharityStorm has focused upon the Swedish market up until now, but they are preparing for expansion, intending to move into another European market in 2016.