A new platform enabling communities to support the little businesses in their own cities or neighborhood.
Bulb in Town is the first crowdfunding platform in Europe dedicated to local projects. Launched in France in February 2013, it proposes internet users to finance business and activities in their own neighborhood or city. City dwellers can support people and initiatives creating social cohesion in their own area: shops and restaurants, craftsmen, associations and museums, bur also groups of citizens.
Through the Bulb in Town website communities can financially back up their favorite businesses, giving them the necessary funds to carry out their projects and be able to survive, in exchange for an in kind compensation (a mix of goods, services, advantages and recognitions) or for return on investment.
As for in kind compensation for example internet users can get restaurant discounts, be invited to a preview in a museum, get free subscriptions to a magazine from a book shop, give their name to a sandwich à la carte….
Local businesses suffer from a decrease in bank loans and subventions. This urges them to find new ways to reinvent themselves, finding new means of financing. Like local crowdfunding.
For example, thanks to Bulb in Town, “La Libraire des Orgues “in Paris has turned from a classic bookshop to a coffee shop, a restaurant and a bookshop. This business was having a difficult time due to the competition with Amazon and Fnac, this last having opened its doors only 500 meters away. In order to survive, the bookshop had to reinvent itself. That is why the owners of the place have decided to create a relaxing area with a coffee shop and a restaurant. The clients have saved the business by financially sponsoring it.
Also, the Musée de Montmartre in Paris is raising 4000 Euros through the Bulb in Town website to cover the expenses for the growth of the museum and the renovation of the studio. Contributions from residents start from 1 Euro and in exchange the museum gives them donations such as 10 Euros gifts to enter the museum. Then there are more significant gifts like invitations to preview and to private events.
The Bulb in Town project has proven very successful, with a success rate of more than 85 per cent, which is 30% higher than the average of crowdfunding.