So you have decided that the best way to fund your tech or design project is through crowdfunding. If you are based outside of the United States, or if you are in the U.S. and realize that the primary source of your funding will likely come from outside of the country, you might be confused about how you will receive your funds. How can those non-U.S. dollars make sense for your campaign?
No matter which country the pledge comes from, Kickstarter will take care of all currency conversions. The currency you see on the display will be from either your home country or the country in which the project originates. For example, if you live in Liverpool, England, and your banking and identity information is in the United Kingdom, monies will be in GBP. The goal will be posted in both GBP and in USD for American backers.
Thus, even if the project is based outside of the United States, they see both currencies. This helps allow your backers to keep track of your progress no matter what currency they are accustomed to using. Kickstarter also helps American backers by listing reward tiers in USD right next to the project’s native currency.
If you are located outside the United States and are considering using an Amazon Payments account to receive Kickstarter funds, note that Amazon requires applicants to have a valid Federal Tax ID (Employer Identification Number) and a valid bank account within the United States. That account must be in either the individual or the company’s name.
Indiegogo’s currency system is a bit more complicated. While it is still free to create a campaign anywhere in the world, campaigns with bank accounts located outside of the United States will incur a $25/25€ bank transfer fee.
Additionally, only certain payment options are available depending on the currency. Raising funds with non-USD currency may limit the campaign to a single payment type. For example, for campaigns raising funds in AUD, PayPal is available. Credit cards may be used for fundraising campaigns in USD, CAD, EUR or GBP.
How you get your funds also depends on where you are located in the world. If funds are raised via credit card, money can only be sent to a bank account in Canada for CAD or a United Kingdom bank for GBP. If credit card funds were raised in EUR, Indiegogo will have to send the funds to a bank account located in Europe. EUR funds can also be sent to a United Kingdom bank via Stripe.
Note, that if any credit card funds are raised in USD, they can be sent to a bank outside of the United States through a bank-to-bank wire transfer.
Crowdfunding for tech or design projects can be successful, regardless of where in the world the money comes from. But if you choose to use crowdfunding for your tech or design project, consider maximizing the odds of campaign success by including global markets in your strategy.