The Innovation Pipeline Series Part 2: Crowdfunding provided the reality check and tools for inventors to learn to use crowd-funding campaigns to test the market and fund their ideas. This is part two of a three-part series created by Australia’s most high-profile inventor, Ric Richardson, famous for taking on Microsoft and winning a multi-million dollar settlement for breach of his software patent.
Speakers included Ted Esdaile-Watts and Braden Wilson from Cocreators Industrial Design, who created the Industrial Design of the hugely oversubscribed Ninja Sphere which asked for $115,000 investment via crowd-funding website Kickstarter and raised $702,937.
They were joined by Marcus Schappi, from Geek Ammo who created a backing of $573,760 when they had only asked for $25,000 for the Micro View.
This panel shared their experiences with the audience and provided a lively discussion on how best to use Kickstarter in order to get new inventions to market.
The 2 day event connected innovators and inventors with marketing and industrial design contacts and mentors as well as a huge amount of information and ideas.
Jacob Clarke, a year 11 student from Shearwater Steiner School, beat five adult local inventors to win the Innovation Prize, and was mobbed by Melbourne and Sydney investors, manufacturers, industrial designers and a film producer, all keen to help the teenager commercialise his idea.
Mr Clarke will be mentored by Ric Richardson – the world-famous local inventor who beat Microsoft in a multi-million dollar patents battle – to create a crowd-funding Kickstarter campaign to raise funds to commercialise his idea.
Troy Potter, from local employment and training network Nortec, is co-ordinating suitable mentors for all six local inventors under the Business Pathways Program that exists to connect small business people with experienced mentors in the area.
“It was exciting to see so many local innovators in the same room,” Mr Potter said. “Hopefully we can underpin some of that creativity with sound business principles and help them turn their ideas and inventions into successful businesses,” he continued.