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Tag Archives: Crowdfunding

  • Support the O-Rings Crowdfunding Campaign on Indiegogo

    Product Pitch Competition winner: O-Rings


    Recent Rhode Island School of Design (RISD) graduates, Maeve Jopson and Cynthia Poon caught the entrepreneurial bug during a school project senior year and in their own words, it’s been a wild ride ever since. After graduation, they dove head first into developing their product, the O-Rings, a full body sensory toy that is designed for all kids to play with and learn from regardless of abilities, age or gender. Since winning the “Ready for Crowdfunding” category at our Product Pitch event this past March, they’ve been busy preparing for their crowdfunding campaign on Indiegogo.We are proud to share that after months of hard work, their campaign is LIVE and there are only a few weeks left to support them.

    Please help us to support O-Rings during these last few weeks and read through a recent conversation to learn more about the duo and then watch their video. Want to support Increment Studios and their product, O-Rings on Indiegogo? Donate here.


    What is Increment Studios and O-Rings?

    Increment creates sensory play things to encourage independence and exploration among all kids regardless of age, ability or gender. The O-Rings are a full body sensory toy and each of the rings is a different color, size, texture, and filling designed for engaged tactile play.

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  • Hickies is Kickin' Off Their Newest Kickstarter Campaign

    Screen shot 2014-04-14 at 12.09.32 PM

    We always say that when our Makers succeed, we succeed. This is an integral part of our mission so when one of our Makers hits a milestone, we shout it from the rooftops and when they need support, we shout that as well.

    We couldn't be happier to see all the success that our Maker, Hickies has received over the past few years and they recently announced venture capital funding to grow their business even further. This is big news for them, but also for the consumer products industry as a whole since VC funding for those involved in the Maker Movement is less common. Hopefully this signals a shift in the industry and the interest of VC firms.

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  • What is Crowdfunding?

    Makers need more than a great idea, well crafted product, or solid business plan to get their companies off the ground -- they need capital. There are several ways to get funding for a business, however crowdfunding is a growing choice for many entrepreneurs out there.

    What is Crowdfunding

    What is crowdfunding?

    Crowdfunding is a funding method where  people (the "crowd") fund personal or business projects and ideas with their own money.  They essentially make a donation to a crowdfunding campaign in order to help a particular business or venture  get the initial momentum and the push it needs. It works like this: you post your project on one of many crowdfunding sites which have a large group of users, or "potential investors", and they will fund your project (by making a monetary donation) if they are interested.  Through crowdfunding sites, such as IndieGogo and Kickstarter, individuals are influencing the world by amplifying the impact of products and voting with their dollars.

    The Grommet is a natural next step for crowdfunded Makers. In fact, we've launched many products that came out of successfully crowdfunded:  Get it Right Spatulas, Skallops, and Monkeylectric (just to name a few). See them all here.

    If you know of one that would be a great fit, please let us know about it in the comments below.

    If you're a Maker thinking of launching your own crowdfunding campaign, be sure to check out these crowdfunding success secrets from our Maker, Sunskis, before you do.

  • The Field Is Ready - Let's Meet Our Teams! Part II


    We recently shared some thoughts from our first four teams from the Ready for Crowdfunding category who will be pitching at Fenway Park on Thursday, March 20th. All final eight teams will present their products and have the opportunity of a lifetime to pitch to press, businesses and other influencers. We're in full swing with the regular season and can't wait to meet our finalists. Below read more about the four finalists who won crowd favorite in the Ready for Market category.

    Repel Gear Active by Repel Gear, LLC

    Product Pitch Competition | repelgear

    Repel Gear Active are seat covers that dirt-proof your car to protect from everyday messes.

    What inspired you to create your product that you're bringing to Fenway on March 20th?

    As active people with children, we were getting in the car dirty and sweaty on a regular basis.  The same options were always available such as draping a towel over the back of the seat while hoping it didn't fall down and bunch up behind us or using a traditional seat cover that took several minutes to put on and take off.  There had to be a better way.  We decided to launch our ACTIVE Series Seat Cover, a comfortable and stylish machine-washable microfiber towel that easily connects to the headrest in a car.  Whether we're sitting on it,  it's under a car seat, or folded up in the console, it has proven it's value time and time again.

    What are you most looking forward to taking away from the event?

    We are excited about the event on March 20th for several reasons but most importantly exposure.  We have an affordable and practical product, we just need to get it to people.  We appreciate the opportunity and look forward to presenting a product that can make people's lives a little easier.

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  • The Field Is Ready - Let's Meet Our Teams!

    In just one week,  our final eight teams will converge at Fenway Park to present their products and have the opportunity of a lifetime to pitch to press, businesses and other influencers. We're in full swing with the regular season and can't wait to meet our finalists. Today we're telling our community a little bit about the teams in the first of a two-post series. Below read more about the four finalists who won crowd favorite in the Ready for Crowdfunding category.


    Bringrr and BringTags

    by Bringrr Systems LLC

    Product Pitch Compettion | bringrr

    Bringrr + Bring Tags is a phone charger and reminder device so you never leave your phone or belongings behind.

    What inspired you to create your product that you're bringing to Fenway on March 20th?

    It all started with our CEO's uncanny ability to forget his phone everywhere. He wanted a reminder device that could be left in the car and practically forgotten until it was needed. So we began to think of things that are always in your car...a car charger! This charger could notify people when their phone isn't with them. We then went a step further to think of other things people might typically forget or leave behind. So we created BringTags to easily attach to anything that could potentially be forgotten or lost.

    What are you most looking forward to taking away from the event?

    I believe we will take away many positive things from the contest, namely exposure and the experience of the event. I'm originally from north of Boston so I know that presenting at Fenway will be a memorable experience. The press will also be an enormous benefit that will help us grow Bringrr and gain more awareness. I can't wait!

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  • Journey to Launch: Yoga by Numbers Part II

    yoga by numbers

    This is the second installment in Elizabeth’s journey to launch on The Grommet. To read the first, click here.

    During Thanksgiving of 2012, close to a year after her health crisis began, Elizabeth had been practicing yoga diligently as a form of recovery and started to form the idea for Yoga by Numbers in her head. By June of 2013, she had working prototypes and by chance, met the Grommet team at an event held at their offices.

    The rest as they say, is history. When asked to describe her relationship with The Grommet, Elizabeth says “…meeting The Grommet and working with them to bring my product to market was like pouring gasoline on the fire. They provided so much of the expertise that I needed, including guidance, connections and tremendously smart people.” She then went on to tell me that entrepreneurship can be a lonely, isolating thing sometimes and others warned her of that early on. She was able to avoid the bulk of that with The Grommet’s help she says. “There was always someone to talk things through with, or bounce ideas off if I needed. It’s been truly wonderful.”

    yoga by numbers

    Her journey to launch on The Grommet has been a blessing, but hasn’t been without its challenges. Like most entrepreneurs, Elizabeth experienced roadblocks along the way. Manufacturing, she says was her biggest hurdle. It was her goal from the beginning to make a mat using ethical practices from an environmental and labor perspective and she wasn’t going to compromise her own values (although she was given many opportunities to do so). She needed to figure out a way to manufacture the mat according to her personal standards and then be able to explain why it would be more expensive than some mats out there. “We are on par with high end, brand name mats, even though the YbN mat is wider than most, made of natural rubber, made in the US, and comes printed with our design, which is what facilitates home practice. But we can’t compete with cheap vinyl mats on cost alone.” Getting the message to consumers that they get a big return on their investment has been challenging, says Elizabeth.

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  • Journey to Launch: Yoga by Numbers Part I

    Product Launch | Yoga by Numbers Elizabeth in action as she shoots her first video.


    In a series of two installments, we’re sharing a special story of one of our Makers, Elizabeth Morrow, who recently launched her new product, Yoga by Numbers this month on The Grommet. An easy to learn yoga mat for beginners, along with an instructional DVD, this is Elizabeth’s first foray into entrepreneurship and below is a behind the scenes look at her story.

    In the early winter months of 2012, Elizabeth Morrow was a young, bright woman working as a human rights policy researcher in Boston. Like many urban dwellers, she lived in the culture of getting more done faster and scheduling her calendar with little room to slow down. She felt happy and successful. Then one day, everything changed. A major, unexpected health crisis hit Elizabeth fast and hard.  She was forced to learn how to slow down physically and emotionally. Fortunately, today Elizabeth is on the road to recovery and has her strong support system to thank. It was during this recovery period that she came to some realizations, giving her the opportunity to shift her life in a very positive, yet unforeseen way. A blessing in disguise, Elizabeth became an active yoga practitioner because it was a safe option for her to exercise in a low impact way during rehabilitation. She began to love how yoga made her feel, but didn’t always want to travel to a studio for class. Sometimes her schedule didn’t allow for it, not to mention the recurring expense. What she really wanted was the ability to practice at home if she needed. Yet she was new to yoga and didn’t know how to properly execute a down dog, let alone some of the other poses and postures. She needed someone there to guide her and correct poses if they were off, and DVDs didn’t provide the detail she was looking for as a newcomer. This got Elizabeth thinking about how more people could have access to yoga if home based practice was practical for beginners.  When I asked her what made her decide to go for it and officially pursue this as a business idea, she simply said, “I just went for it. I decided I was going to just figure it out.” And so she did.

    Product Launch Platform Posing for her photo shoot at The Grommet


     “I just went for it. I decided I was going to just figure it out.”

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  • EXTRA INNINGS: Updates from Blu2Green!


    This week, we're continuing our updates from some of our teams at our Product Pitch competition last March. We love watching how these companies are evolving and tracking their success!

    Below you’ll see some great updates from the Blu2Green team as they're in the midst of their very first crowdfunding campaign through Indiegogo. If you feel strongly about their company, click "Contribute Now" on their Indiegogo page next to their video!

    They're educating us on just how much waste is created by hospitals each year. Did you know that over 1 million pounds of blue wrap you see at hospitals is thrown away each year? That's an equivalent to the weight of 250 cars! Learn more on their Indiegogo page here .

    We also got the chance to catch up with the team recently to find out how everything is going and what it's been like to launch a crowdfunding campaign (not an easy process)!

    Read more of our conversation below.

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  • Kick-Ass Crowdfunding Campaigns for November

    Winter is upon us, but there are some hot crowdfunding campaigns burning strong.

    One of our favorite things to do each month is get to know some great new products through crowdfunding and decide which we think have good potential for long term success.

    We're starting the season off right by investing is some majorly kick-ass crowdfunding projects. We've done a lot of research for this month's products and decided on these to name just a few. We can't wait to see them come to market and hope you are just as excited. Do you support projects on Kickstarter and Indiegogo that you think might make it big? Follow along with our series here to see which projects we invest in monthly.



    New Products - The Carpenter

    The Carpenter Collection All-Natural Wood Watch & Soft Strap

    $67,348 pledged of $10,000 goal

    Days to go: 2

    The first soft strapped watch made with 100% all-natural wood. Designer, Lorenzo Buffa, and his company, Analog Watch Co. have spent the last year working on an all-natural flexible wooden watch. The project started out as a material exploration which led to sketching out designs, researching and experimenting with different woods, building prototype after prototype by hand, then working with various suppliers and a manufacturer to develop the final designs.



    $35,408 pledged of $65,000 goal

    Days to go: 14

    BatteryBot is the world's first and only character-based rechargeable backup battery for smartphones, tablets & mobile devices. The idea came about from the question: Why does a simple functional device like a rechargeable power pack have to live in such a boring shell? ⅓ designer toy, ⅓ battery charger, ⅓ character the battery packs are the intersection of pop-culture meets consumer electronics.

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  • 4 Crowdfunding Success Secrets

    There's been a lot of buzz lately surrounding the power of crowdfunding and it's ability to change the world of commerce, but it still remains a relative mystery to some would-be entrepreneurs.

    (Not sure what crowdfunding is exactly? That's ok, check this post out)

    With The Grommet hosting the first ever Boston Crowdfunding Weekend this Saturday, we decided it would be perfect timing to ask our partners to share their secrets for crowdfunding success. Tom Stewart, our longtime partner, has had not 1 but 2 successful campaigns funded on both Kickstarter and Indiegogo when launching  Sunskis sunglasses.

    Today, Tom is sharing his tips on how to start your campaign and reach your goals. Read on for our Q & A with Tom:

    4 Crowdfunding Success Secrets

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