Peoplefund.it is a new crowd-funding platform that enables people with business ideas that might just change the world to raise funding and gain support from the public.
Through Peoplefund.it, money, time and skills can be pledged to start-up businesses or new projects in return for rewards. Its aim is to launch a generation of entrepreneurs, businesses and charities who are commercially sustainable and have social innovation at their heart.
The platform has been built on the back of the success of energyshare, which is an online community that brings people together in person and online. It gives everyone the opportunity to source, use and even generate their own 100% British renewal energy. The energyshare fund allowed four community groups to start their own green energy projects. energyshare is supported by British Gas.
The people behind these projects are also behind River Cottage chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstalls' Fish Fight and Chicken Out! campaigns.
Nick Underhill from KEO Digital says: "As a result of these other projects we were confronted with a demand from people coming to us with their ideas. Rather than just pick one we decided to set up the Peoplefund.it platform so that ANYONE could set up their own project. Peoplefund.it was designed and developed in a few months and came to light in November 2011. We learned that grass roots projects can lead to big things."
In keeping with this theory, three businesses have already achieved full funding via Peoplefund.it.
The award: Peoplefund.it has been awarded £148,000 to help scale the crowdfunding website.
Nick Underhill, MD, Keo Digital says: "We are delighted NESTA will be supporting Peoplefund.it. We are looking for game changing ideas that may just make a global difference and we want to empower people to take positive action. The NESTA funding is a strategic investment: it will give Peoplefund.it the kick start it needs that will in turn help businesses and communities across the UK get the funding they need to grow."
Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, says: "Grass roots action has the power to effect more remarkable change than we really ever imagined. Peoplefund.it gives people the means to take their ideas forward."
Online coverage on the successes of Peoplefund.it projects Oxford Biochar, The Bicycle Academy and Foodcycle Café:
Interview with Jake Lea-Wilson on origins of KeoDigital:
Find out more about the £10m fund supporting ideas with potential to deliver a significant increase in the giving and exchange of time, assets, skills, resources and money
Read the press release announcing the first 15 organisations to be funded through the Innovation in Giving Fund
Check out the Vimeo channel featuring pitches from the 62 shortlisted Innovation in Giving Fund applications