Crowdfunding emerged in the last years as a new way to finance product development and even startups. That’s why we asked Dylan Dimitrov, one of our speakers at How to Web Conference 2014, how he sees crowdfunding in the CEE in general and equity crowdfunding with its particularities.
Dylan’s Eleven Acceleration Venture Fund invested in Kown, also an Equity funding tool that helped three of the Eleven’s backed companies to raise additional funding.
How to Web: With respect to crowdfunding, can a product be seen as a “cause” to raise “donations”?
Dilyan Dimitrov: There is a difference between equity crowdfunding and crowdfunding – in one case investors get equity, and in the other – some rewards (donations?). The end goal is always the same – raise funding for a project, but the commitment to the “investors” is different. And this is where some projects (or “causes”) are more suitable for crowdfunding, while other startups can benefit from equity crowdfunding more. So – for some products – yes, for others – not so much. (see more)
How to be a good product manager and how to build a great product? Two of the most sought after answers of the tech business. So we asked Mark Tolmacs, who happens to be a great product manager (for a platform which provides video streaming services to more than 80 million viewers & broadcasters), what his answers are, just before you can meet him at How to Web Conference 2014’s Product track to find out more on the subject.
Mark is Product Manager at Ustream, a live broadcast startup operating out of Silicon Valley, but co-founded by the Hungarian entrepreneur Gyula Feher and having technical operations and product development based also in Hungary.
Previously, Mark managed Ustream’s paid products and analytics services for more than three years. He’s an avid social and behavioral psychology enthusiast. In his free time Mark enjoys meeting new people and applying his knowledge to turn great ideas into products that delight.
How to Web: Tell us in just one sentence, what makes a great product?
After Edward Snowden blew the whistle on NSA’s mass-surveillance program last year, so called ‘Privacy as a Service’ became a real attractive business and companies like HideMyAss, Hotspot Shield, CyberGhost VPN or ZenMate, which offer anonymous browsing and VPN-like connectivity on the web, got a lot of attraction and customers.
And money, too. ZenMate just raised $3.2 million from a group of Venture Capital funds at the beginning of October.
But Robert Knapp, co-founder and CEO of CyberGhost VPN says he turned down such offers because he doesn’t want a VC on his back, unless he finds one who understands what it means not to treat people like products. Instead, he went on Indiegogo crowdfunding platform asking people to finance his product.
With over 50 international speakers and 4 distinct tracks featuring almost 40 keynotes, talks & panels, we plan to make How to Web Conference 2014 an experience to remember! But for us it’s really not about the numbers, but about the people behind them, the ones that build amazing products and companies, who bring together incredibly talented people and unite communities around a common goal. They are the real superheroes of our tech era and this November you can meet them in person!
How to Web Conference 2014 – highlights
Since last week we’ve made a massive update to our conference schedule, including more confirmed keynotes, talks and panels and more speakers announced! (see more)
Crowdfunding websites raised last year no less than $5.1 billion and this newborn industry is expected to grow by more than 92% in 2014. No wonder that it exerts both attention and attraction and we couldn’t miss to address the matter at How to Web Conference 2014.
In the last five years we witnessed the ‘democratization of investments’ through platforms such as Kickstarter or Indiegogo and crowdfunding became quickly a convenient alternative to raise money for financing early-stage product development.