The Wisdom of the Crowd: A Crowdfunding Proposal from Innovatio

Graphics by Amanda @aelizaey

Crowdfunding has a long history that extends far beyond the advent of websites like Kickstarter, Indiegogo, Patreon, etc. A crowdfunding campaign to complete the Statue of Liberty launched by newspaper magnate Joseph Pulitzer in 1885 was successful after being disseminated widely through his national publications. Modern innovations inspire new financial services, a prime example being Project Catalyst. Using smart contracts deployed on Cardano, The Innovatio Founder aims to become a commercial venture extension of Project Catalyst.

Supporting Value

The Innovatio Founder is a Fund4 Developer Ecosystem proposal. It requests $50,000 in Catalyst funding to establish an LLC to operate a decentralized crowdfunding platform. The proposal’s team recognizes Project Catalyst as a revolutionary new DAO for funding projects built on Cardano. However, many submissions that receive the necessary amount of votes from ADA holders to award Catalyst funds will still need follow-up capital to implement their ideas successfully. Others will not collect enough votes to get funding despite presenting strong ideas and committed developers. In both cases, the individual or team behind a Project Catalyst proposal can seamlessly transition to the Innovatio Founder platform.

These teams will have the option to enroll in The Innovatio Founder for a ‘modest fee’ and become a member. Their proposal would then be listed on The Innovatio Founder platform, providing visibility to a broader group of global investors. Some worthy ideas will surely slip through the cracks, and others just won’t be developed adequately to earn enough votes. Proposers can choose to push the project forward by applying for listing on The Innovatio Founder, or they may recognize a need for help from a community ready to offer robust input to sharpen their pitch and strengthen their odds of earning the investment needed to succeed.

Emerging Businesses

A new generation of businesses and commercial ventures build from a foundation of blockchain technology. The Innovatio Founder seeks to support the emerging business community – both within and outside Cardano – as it hones its ideas and solicits the capital needed for long-term success. Cardano’s innovative blockchain will allow crowdfunding to evolve beyond its current database-driven state. The team will not control any investment capital, as it will be converted to ADA and governed by smart contracts. The team will focus on designing and maintaining the platform protocol, creating and auditing smart contracts, marketing and promotion, developing new features, regulatory compliance, platform operations, and providing services to stakeholders and members.

Alternative means of commercial investment will involve completing a due diligence review. The Innovatio Founder will assist members in completing this process to ensure their projects meet commercial investment-grade standards. By providing a place for potential backers and quality proposals to communicate and interact in an efficient, secure, and transparent way, The Innovatio Founder offers value to startups and investors alike. Transparent Cardano smart contracts control each step of the platform’s funding cycle. Projects receiving funds must submit progress reports, posted privately to the Cardano blockchain, with decryption keys available only to funders.

The Pitch

The Innovatio Group has not provided a whitepaper or technical documents detailing protocol implementation in the proposal or the attached documents. Without more information on how the team would harness cryptocurrencies and smart contracts to connect investors with start-ups seamlessly, it’s impossible to know how likely the successful implementation of a rival to Kickstarter would be in this case. A lack of technical detail and experience may present an issue for ADA holders considering a vote for the proposal. The project leader, CEO Ayax Labombarda, cites “experience in team management, high resolution capacity and leadership.” The proposal is well written and includes quality documentation in certain respects, including budget and website presentation, which suggests that Catalyst funding will help develop the platform’s primary design features, implementation strategies, web design, and educational content. 

The Potential of Innovatio

The Innovatio Founder hopes to nurture a community of entrepreneurs, developers, and investors, giving members access to a wealth of experience, expertise, and resources. The team will develop educational content (articles, walkthroughs, video tutorials, podcasts, etc.) to provide value to members lacking business startup experience. A minimum viable product is currently a work in progress, with a beta-tested demo set as a target for completion by the end of Q2 2021. The ‘Budget’ attachment to the Fund4 proposal details the spending for Q2 as follows, in EUR: 19,000 on personnel (3 people), 3,200 on administration (legal fees related to corporate registration & agreements), 400 on technology (web hosting deals and equipment), 1,500 on sales and marketing (social media marketing and research), and 23,000 on licensing (registration for money services license). The ‘Business Profile’ attachment to the proposal lists 14 team members, although there will only be three to five on the payroll throughout the calendar year. The team member bios don’t present an abundance of relevant experience but plenty of young, ambitious faces.

Projects like The Innovatio Founder seek to enhance Catalyst’s effectiveness and scope. If you’re interested in learning more about the proposal, visit https://cardano.ideascale.com/a/dtd/crowdfunding-platform/340725-48088

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