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- Date Established
- Powell, Ohio
- Both rewards and equity crowdfunding are available
- Low fees for successful campaigns
- Good customer support
- Prescreening of campaigns benefits backers
- Flat monthly fee hurts unsuccessful campaigners
- You get no funds if you don’t reach your funding goal
- Campaigns must be prescreened for approval
Crowdfunding websites have taken off in the past decade, with most of the larger crowdfunding outfits focusing on inventors, self-publishers, and charitable causes. Fundable, by contrast, is all business.
Founded by Wil Schroter and Eric Corl and launched in 2012, Fundable touts itself as a business crowdfunding platform that offers hands-on support to companies as they navigate the fundraising process. Fundable gives businesses the choice of launching either a rewards-based crowdfunding campaign (à la Kickstarter) or an equity-based campaign in which backers get a share of stock in the company in exchange for their backing.
Fundable assists in the marketing of these campaigns as well, helping companies set up their fundraising profiles and sharing them with personal and professional networks.
Fundable reviews any company that creates a profile for their suitability before allowing them to raise money on the platform. Fundable is less geared toward starry-eyed dreamers with wild ideas and more toward startups and companies with a solid plan of action. What’s more, only accredited investors can contribute to an equity crowdfunding campaign on Fundable. It’s more of an upmarket crowdfunder than most of its immediate competitors.
According to the company, $570 million in funding has thus far been committed to companies on Fundable. Read on to get a full picture of Fundable’s crowdfunding platform.
Table of Contents
Fundable facilitates rewards-based and equity-based crowdfunding (though not both simultaneously) to a wide variety of businesses. The following categories of businesses are eligible to apply to use Fundable:
- Consumer Products
- Food Service
- Health & Beauty
- Life Science
- Personal Care
- Real Estate
- Specialty Retail
- Sporting Goods
To use Fundable’s platform, you have to be at least 18 years old, and your business must not be involved in the following:
- Adult-oriented material
- Charitable projects
- Collections businesses
- Coupons or discounts
- Cash-equivalent instruments
- Credit services
- Donations or charitable solicitations
- Money service businesses
- Gambling businesses
- Healthcare discount programs
- Illegal, inappropriate, or offensive items/activities
- Marketing businesses
- Miracle cure products
- Get rich quick schemes
- Phone services
- Regulated activities (bail bonds, security brokers, etc.)
- Tobacco products
- Travel and timeshares
Beyond that, you can’t use Fundable to do anything unlawful or unethical, post spam, or harass anyone.
Rates & Fees
Here are the terms and fees for Fundable’s crowdfunding campaigns:
|Funding Duration:||No set limit|
|Fundable Fee:||$179 per month|
|Funding Terms:||All or nothing (must meet your goal to collect funds)|
|Payment Processing Fee:||3.5% + $0.30 per transaction (rewards campaigns only)|
Fundable uses the “all or nothing” model of crowdfunding — if you don’t reach your funding goal during your funding period, you get nothing. Fundable says the average campaign takes 60-90 days to complete.
Not a fan of “all or nothing?” Other startup business loan options:
|Lender||Borrowing Amount||Loan Term Length||Interest Rate||Origination Fee?||Min Credit Score||Next Steps|
|$1K - $50K||3 or 5 years||8.16% – 27.99%||Yes||620||Apply Now|
|$2K - $35K||3 or 5 years||6.95% - 35.99% APR||Yes||640||Apply Now|
|$25K – $300K||3 – 7 years||0% -15% on first 9 – 15 months||Yes||680||Qualify Now|
Notice that instead of charging a percentage of the money you raise as a fee, Fundable charges a flat monthly fee of $179. Most other crowdfunders will take a chunk (usually 5%) of the money raised in a successful campaign, sometimes called a “success fee.” This means that with Fundable, you’ll have to pay for the privilege of using the platform whether or not you are successful in your campaign. That makes Fundable a less attractive option for small-time businesses and entrepreneurs who are uncertain of the likelihood of succeeding in their campaigns as well as projects with a modest fundraising goal.
On the other hand, it’s great for projects that raise a significant amount of capital and meet their goals, as they won’t have to pay thousands of dollars in fees.
If you want the highest degree of help possible via the premium package, Fundable will work to connect you with accredited investors. Pricing for the premium package is not given on the website, but I did some digging, and it seems this package is available for a one-time payment of $2,499.
You’ll also notice that payment processing fees only apply to contributions to a rewards campaign. That’s because, with an equity campaign, all payments are made offline directly from the accredited investor to the campaigner after the fundraising goal is met, via wire transfer or check.
One requirement of running a rewards campaign is that you offer at least three levels of rewards to your backers. However, those rewards can come in the form of either a preorder of a product or a promise to provide a service. Fundable gives you more flexibility in terms of the rewards you can offer than does Kickstarter, which requires that your rewards come in the form of physical goods.
When you apply to use Fundable, you create a Company Profile in which you list details concerning your company, your project, and your fundraising goals. You’ll then have to wait for Fundable to approve your profile before you can continue. (If you don’t like the idea of waiting for approval, Indiegogo automatically approves all projects submitted and does due diligence later.)
After that’s done, you choose either a rewards campaign or an equity campaign. A rewards campaign pledge can be for as little as $1, while the minimum commitment for an equity campaign is $1,000. There is no maximum pledge amount.
Sales & Advertising Transparency
Fundable lays out the terms and conditions of its use in a very straightforward, plain-spoken manner. There’s even a hint of dry humor in there. Nothing about Fundable gives off any sales-y vibes.
Customer Service & Technical Support
Fundable provides a searchable knowledgebase to answer questions about the platform, along with lengthy guides on investing, running a startup, and crowdfunding. There are also a number of infographic materials and startup stories provided, all freely available online.
For direct support, a toll-free phone number, email, and live chat services are available on Fundable’s website. This goes above and beyond the level of support typically offered by crowdfunders, many of which just provide an email contact form for support. Fundable gets some brownie points for this.
Negative Reviews & Complaints
There isn’t too much fault to find with Fundable, but there are a few recurring criticisms from both professional reviewers and Fundable users:
- No “Flexible” Funding Option: Fundable’s fundraising structure is all-or-nothing, but some reviewers posit that it would be nice if Fundable offered a flexible option that would let you keep whatever you raise.
- High Monthly Fee: The $179 monthly fee might be a bit onerous for a small business operating on a tight budget.
- Unhelpful Customer Service: Among actual users of the service, some have complained of a lack of support from Fundable in helping to locate investors as well as inadequate customer service.
Positive Reviews & Testimonials
Professional reviewers and users have mostly sounded positive notes about Fundable:
- Allows Both Rewards & Equity-Based Fundraising: Some reviewers have praised the flexibility of allowing both rewards-based and equity-based crowdfunding campaigns. One reviewer noted: “A successful Rewards raise can be a great foundation of support for a subsequent Equity raise.”
- Attractive For Backers: Other reviewers have opined that Fundable is a particularly attractive platform for backers, as Fundable’s monthly fee structure does a good job of weeding out unserious campaigns.
- Supportive Customer Service: I’ve seen some positive feedback from users as well — many people report having great customer service experiences and a high level of support in finding investors.
Fundable isn’t exactly a crowdfunder for the masses. Its monthly fees and restrictive policies regarding who can use the platform suggest that the little guy may have to look elsewhere for a more forgiving means of crowdfunding. However, for the serious business owner looking to raise a significant amount of capital, Fundable is an excellent option, especially considering you get the choice of running a rewards campaign or an equity campaign and the fact that Fundable won’t take a cut of the money you raise.
All else being equal, if you should raise a million dollars, better to pay Fundable’s monthly fee than to pay the 5% fee that most other crowdfunders charge! (It’s true — I did the math.)
Fundable isn’t a platform for charitable causes, fly-by-night inventors, or conspiracy theorist bloggers, but for a business with a solid plan of action, it might be just the ticket.
Other startup business loan options: