Ballroom Book, Art Fabrication Studio To Take Part In Crowdfunding Project

By Annie Pentilla
The Montana Standard, Butte

WWR Article Summary (tl;dr) A group of economic development advocates in Butte is taking a grassroots approach to raising capital for entrepreneurs. A new USDA-backed crowdfunding platform called “The Local Crowd”, will help organizations and individuals harness the power of the internet to raise money for projects.

The Montana Standard, Butte

Entrepreneurs, inventors and artists can sometimes seem worlds apart in the spheres of art, science and business, but what these folks often have in common is a passion for the things they create: for their businesses, gadgets and creative works.

But passion can only take a person so far, as it often takes capital to transform an idea into a fully-fledged reality.

A group of economic development advocates in Butte is taking a grassroots approach to capital through a new USDA-backed crowdfunding platform called The Local Crowd.

In case you don’t have your finger on the pulse of everything tech, crowdfunding is an internet-based fundraising technique that’s gained popularity in recent years.

Sites like GoFundMe and Kickstarter have led the way in the concept, and they work like this: instead of applying for grants or getting a bank loan, businesses, organizations, or individuals can harness the power of the internet by submitting fundraising campaigns to websites where users can donate to projects of their choice.

In November Julie Jaksha, director of the Small Business Development Center for Headwaters RC&D in Butte, announced that Headwaters had been chosen as a test site to study the effectiveness of the platform, which is designed as an economic development tool for individual communities, rather than a broad public platform.

Headwaters was one among more than 20 test sites selected to take part in The Local Crowd study, whose founders Kim Vincent and Diane Wolverton of Wyoming received a $500,000 grant from the USDA for the research project.

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