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A look waaaaay back at 2014

January 15, 2015

• Max Silverman

 

Before we get too far past the acceptable year-in-review-article phase of 2015, we wanted to take a look back at what the hell happened in 2014. It was a pretty big year for Seed&Spark (not that we’ve had any small ones thus far). Here’s a quick recap:

 

74 crowdfunding projects successfully raised a total of $1.1M from over 7,600 supporters, with $140k coming in the form of loans of goods and services to the productions. Of all projects launched, 80% of them received the Greenlight - meaning that they raised at least 80% of their fundraising goal. This is 2x the success rate of Kickstarter for film projects (and we mercifully won’t even compare it to the other guys). Because we allow supporters to cover fees on behalf of the crowdfunding projects they support, filmmakers paid an average of only 1.95% site fees and no third party payment provider fees.

 

BRIGHT IDEAS Magazine debuted its inaugural issue at Sundance to rave reviews (and a way over-subscribed party), and repeated the performance with issue #2 during LAFF in July. We started selling subscriptions during the holidays and have a fast-growing subscriber base, building on our established circulation at all of the top North American film festivals. (shameless plug: get your subscription now!)

 

We launched the #StayIndieTour - teaching over 2000 students in 60 classes across 40 cities - empowering filmmakers in all geographies to harness the audience-building tools of crowdfunding to build sustainable, independent careers as filmmakers. And for a stretch of several months last fall, we saw a 100% success rate for crowdfunding projects!

 

Through our partnership with American Express, we distributed 27 films through the AmEx NOW smart TV channel, allowing them to reach up to 67 million homes. And in keeping with our core values, all the filmmakers got paid!

 

We were floored to be featured in a VentureBeat article how by choosing the right niche crowdfunding site you can out-perform the catch-all ones (what we’ve been saying all along!): a survey of crowdfunders put us at the very top in customer experience in film&video crowdfunding.

 

We were graciously chosen to receive the Flyaway Spirit Award by the Flyaway Film Festival in Pepin, WI “…for [our] inspiration and support of independent filmmakers.”

 

We added Nicole Malek, Simon Sorich, and Greg Cohan to the team, all of whom are doing an incredible job. There’s 8 of us now!

 

2015 is already shaping up to outpace 2014 on all fronts, and we can’t wait to report on the exciting milestones we expect to achieve this year!

 

Read more by

Max Silverman

Max understands the transformative power of storytelling through pictures and has a rekindled optimism for what independent cinema might look like ten years from now. He feels privileged to be working alongside such a brilliant and committed team, and is

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