The Equity of the Crowds
Quick, who is the first name you think of when someone says crowdfunding? We bet it’s Kickstarter. That name has become synonymous with using the crowd to fund projects that would otherwise never see the light of day. But the truth is, crowdfunding really owes its roots to Indiegogo.
They may not have the same notoriety, but Indiegogo CEO and cofounder Slava Rubin is having a great year. They’ve rebranded the site, raised a $40 million Series B, and as of this morning, launched their new mobile app.
Besides the headline-winners like Google’s Nest, clean tech companies have trouble getting any love in the startup world. They’ve had a roller coaster ride in terms of funding the past few years, and the only companies that pull in any mainstream appeal are bizarre pipe dreams like Solar Roadways. But every once in a Read More
Since Solar Roadways reached full funding, many news outlets — ourselves included — have thrown serious shade at the idea that the country might eventually be covered with light-up solar panels.
The founders of Solar Roadways, Scott and Julie Brusaw, have responded to the criticism with a counter-argument/rant on the Solar Roadways site which they’ve titled “Clearing the Freakin’ Air.”
Welcome to Freshly Minted, where we examine an overlooked deal or funding announcement in tech from the past week, and tell you what you need to know, and why it matters.
The deal: Solar Roadways, an experimental project to replace every road in the country with light-up solar panels, has raised $1.6 million in funding in the past six weeks.
Solar Roadways has clearly captured the imagination of its backer community, as well as a slew of mainstream media coverage. Since April 21, the crowdfunding campaign has raised $1.6 million to start manufacturing and testing the panels at a larger scale, and has set an Indigogo record for the most individual backers on a single project, at over 35,000.
It’s also impractical, expensive and, as the editors of Equities put it, “really silly.” While the project might make its backers feel like they’re helping contribute to a greener society, there’s no way
The dream of solar roadways — whole roads, driveways and parking lots replaced by light-up solar panels — has been talked about for years as just a pipe-dream for utopian futurists. That is until yesterday, when the quixotic Solar Roadways Indiegogo campaign reached its goal of $1 million in funding.
The company already has working prototypes, but the project will help them manufacture tons of panels and start testing them out on a wider scale. The proposed hexagonal panels stay slightly heated to melt snow and eliminate the need for salting and plowing, and light up with guidelines to eliminate the need for repainting. The working prototypes are made of largely recycled glass and generate enough energy to pay for themselves over a period of many years.