Indiegogo, the nine-year-old, crowdfunding site, is changing things up, it announced today. Not only can startups now raise money through the site, but in what seems like a natural evolution, they can now sell what they make once their goods are in production.
In what seems a bigger twist, the San Francisco-based company will also now sell other items, too, opening its new platform — called simply “Indiegogo Marketplace” — to goods that were successfully crowdfunded elsewhere.
Indiegogo will take between 10 percent or 15 percent of the sale price of the product in the process.
“When the company originally launched, the original goal was just to make it easier for founders,” Dave Mandelbrot, the company’s CEO, told Recode earlier today. “Launching the marketplace is really the last step of that to ensure that — once they have a product — that is ready for purchase.”
The idea, the company said in a separate statement, is to “help you get the clever innovations that you just can’t find anywhere else.”
For the most part, anyway. Certainly, we can assume that Indiegogo will mostly attempt to feature goods that consumers won’t find on Amazon, which has developed into fierce competition any e-tailer that’s selling products that aren’t its own branded goods.
Still, given Amazon’s consumer product focus, it might be difficult to navigate around its ilk completely.
Indeed, among the quirky gifts that users can buy right now on Indiegogo Marketplace is the Aumi Smart Nightlight, a light that lies flat on a surface and can be controlled by a smartphone. The product raised money on Kickstarter in 2015 and is also available for sale right now at Target.
Two other products available for purchase include a lightweight, fold-up fabric grill called the GoBQ Grill, whose founders raised money on Indiegogo in 2015; and the HiMirror, a smart mirror that aims to tell users about the condition of their skin. The HiMirror is also available to buy — from HiMirror — at Amazon.
Interestingly, Indiegogo’s move follows Amazon’s decision two years ago to create Amazon LaunchPad, a storefront that features freshly baked products that it said at the time were being funneled its way by more than 25 VC firms, accelerators and crowdfunding platforms, including Andreessen Horowitz, Y Combinator, and Indiegogo.
There hasn’t been much buzz about LaunchPad since, with some potential cons — as outlined by one strategy firm — being that payment terms are long, and Amazon can recommend a lower price for an item if it exceeds its expected price.
Indiegogo has raised $56 million to date from investors, including Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, Khosla Ventures, and Insight Venture Partners.
Meanwhile, eight-year-old, Brooklyn-based Kickstarter, whose investors have only confirmed one $10 million round in its history, made clear back in 2012 that Kickstarter is not a store, and it doesn’t seem to have veered from that stance. Last year, in fact, it partnered with Amazon, as part of an expansion of Amazon’s LaunchPad program, though Amazon had sold Kickstarter items previously, too.