Kickstarter just announced via its Twitter account that it will be opening up its crowdfunding platform for Canada -based projects as of “later this summer.” Thus far, that’s as specific as the company is getting, but anyone interested in finding out more can sign up at Kickstarter’s Canada launch page with their email and project category of interest to get an alert when things go live.
Kickstarter competitor Indiegogo already offers support for Canada-based projects, and in fact recently expanded its Canadian payment options, but this marks the first time Kickstarter has extended its platform to the great white north. Already, Canadians have been using the platform, but they require a U.S.-based bank account to process pledges. Late last year, Kickstarter opened up project support for the U.K., with funding goals and pledged based in British pounds, and funds being managed via U.K.-based bank accounts.
This is great news for Canadian creators, and should help alleviate many of the hoops required for project founders to jump through in order to use Kickstarter currently. Ottawa-based Teknision learned first-hand what can go wrong when trying to cross borders to fund projects on the platform, as it encountered a payment issue when it started its project to fund an Android tablet OS modification which ultimately resulted in it having to scrap the project entirely and start over.
Kickstarter has been slow to roll out its international platform expansions, and is clearly picking prime targets based on community demand. The intricacies of launching an ecommerce business in other countries is always a challenge, but is likely even more of one when you’re doing something as nuanced as building a crowdfunding platform. The Canada launch is a sign of progress, however, and should give hope to founders in other countries watching and waiting for the crowdfunding giant to make landfall in their own backyard.