Enterprising film students and death trap jellyfish tank builders aren’t the only people who could use a little crowdfunding. Lucky Ant, a neighborhood-based crowdfunding platform, has expanded its reach from the Lower East Side, adding Williamsburg to the repertoire of ‘hoods with local business in need of funding.
Lucky Ant has only been around for a little over three months, but it works like this: Each week, the creators choose one project from a local business in your neighborhood–something like building an outdoor patio for a local restaurant–and neighborhood residences can chip in to help pay for that project. Lucky Ant functions a lot like Kickstarter, in that those who contribute to the project get a reward for doing so, like a gift certificate from the restaurant.
“For the last 3 months, Lucky Ant has been running hyperlocal crowdfunding in the Lower East Side, but we are now ready to make our first move and we are growing to a second neighborhood as of this week,” said Lucky Ant founder Jonathan Moyal in an email to Betabeat.
So far, many of the posted projects have reached their funding goals–Grotto, a Lower East Side Italian restaurant, successfully raised $7,500 to cover their outdoor patio. Bari Studio, a fitness center, raised $5,000 so that they could trademark their name.
Considering the neighborhood’s known love for the mom-and-pop stores, branching out into Williamsburg seems like a natural progression. Lucky Ant’s first Williamsburg-based project is for Pie Corps, to help the fledgling business build a bigger oven. And who doesn’t like pie?