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An Alternate Way to Funding: Look to the Crowd: Crowdfunding

by Guest on November 9, 2012

Guido Molinari is an Esc Hero who left the world of investment banking to start an innovative ice cream and frozen desserts business based between London and the Amalfi coast with the goal to bring its product worldwide. Here, he talks about his current crowdfunding campaign. 

Somewhere along the line in the successful growth of your business, you are going to be presented with the opportunity of growth.

At first, the decision will seem simple.

Yes, full steam ahead!

Coming back to earth, you and your team will be presented with its not so attractive associate, the obstacle – funding.

How will the growth be paid for? Traditional methods of investments from family, friends, or perhaps even a corporate injection are the first that come to mind.

The elusive bank loan may be the next thought.

Third? Well, if giving up your leadership role or signing off your life do not sound appealing, then perhaps consider the following, brought to you by London’s own Ice Italy, and needing your help: http://www.sponsume.com/project/solving-great-dessert-dilemma.

Ice Italy was founded in London in February of 2011 by Escape the City Hero, Guido Molinari. It was formed with the goal of supplying London’s hospitality scene with fabulous high-end dessert handmade in Italy’s stunning Amalfi Coast – their specialty including natural volcanic fruits with their pulp turned into low-fat gelato and fat-free sorbets, which are then placed back into their original fruit flesh.

The first year of business proved quite successful.

Ice Italy secured many white-label orders from top restaurants and hotels including Claridge’s, Hilton Group, Intercontinental, Langham, Marriott, Millennium Group, The Travellers Club and Royal Automobile Club and Nike for the London 2012 Olympic Athletes among others.

With these orders, came opportunity and growth was inevitable.

Based on this demand, came the goal to become stocked nationwide by UK’s finest supermarkets.

Funding this endeavour seemed like a large hurdle, but with careful calculations and valuation, the Ice Italy team decided to use a combination of:

1. Funding from friends and family.

2. An elusive bank loan.

And….

3. Crowdfunding!

What is Crowdfunding and why should it be considered?

As the name entails, Crowdfunding is an opportunity for a business to collect funds from a group of regular people, or the public. In this sense, business owners can offer specific incentives, be it company shares, gifts or advanced sales to a targeted group of people, usually future consumers. Crowdfunding host websites offer their services of easy-to-use templates, hosting and driven traffic of people looking for new companies to financially support for a median exchange of between 4-5% of funds raised. Websites such as Crowdcube, Kickstarter, Sponsume and others each offer their own unique selling points, generally distinguished by what is being offered and the terms at it being redeemed.

For Ice Italy, it was Sponsume, which can be seen by clicking here.

From VIP tickets to their Product Launch party, to a special weekend getaway to their wonka factory in Italy’s Amalfi Coast, within less than a week of their launch, Ice Italy has seen their widely anticipated Crowdfunding launch off to a fabulous start gaining over one thousand pounds from over 100 different ‘backers’ and their success is yet from over.

With the project running until December, 8th, head on over to their page to learn more.

Also, if you’d like to read about Escape’s own crowd-funding journey, check out the story and the 7 lessons learnt here.

  • Adele

    Best of luck Guido!

  • Patrice

    Great story Guido and best of luck. Crowdfunding is certainly the future for entrepreneurs… market test your idea, get orders and funding all in 1! it certainly helped me out in the past

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