Crowdfunding has become part of the toy production landscape. Many of the action figure lines collectors are looking forward to in 2015, such as Amazing Heroes and Warpo’s Legends of Cthulhu, had their genesis in crowdfunding campaigns.
Kickstarter has been the crowdfunding site of choice for many toy-based campaigns, but toys or action figures isn’t one of the main categories of the site. These sorts of projects have to find a place amongst the arts, craft and technology categories.
A new crowdfunding site, ToyBacker, is looking to be the first crowdfunding site devoted to the toy industry. Founded by Carlos Lopez and Jason Reilley, the site looks to create a hub for toy innovators and project contributors to come together and allow for the funding of new toy projects.
Much like Kickstarter, ToyBacker is an all or nothing model for funding. A project hits its total revenue goal or the project receives none of the funding it raises during its campaign. The site also offers to act as direct agents for successful campaigns to present them to toy or licensed product companies.
From the ToyBacker press release:
With the increasingly competitive landscape of the toy development and retail industries, crowd funding has emerged as a gateway for toy innovators to display and gather support for ideas that may have been passed up by large toy companies. ToyBacker today announced the launch of Toybacker.com, the first crowd funding site dedicated solely to the toy industry.
The site will serve as a hub for creative toy innovators of all types to share their ideas, gather funding and bring their products to fruition with financial support of the consumer.
“As crowd funding companies like Kickstarter and Indiegogo have benchmarked thousands of fully funded projects, from 3D printers to nationally distributed feature films such as Veronica Mars, we recognized the need for toy innovators to own their own [forum,]” said Carlos Lopez, Co-founder of ToyBacker. “As an veteran licensor, fan of toys and supporter of other Kickstarter projects, I am excited for Toybacker.com to convene innovators and hopefully catapult great ideas.”
Toybacker.com’s crowd funded, two tier platform will not only allow great ideas to be developed through direct consumer support, but it will also offer any campaigner that gets fully funded the option to have Toy Backer act as direct agents. They will be able to facilitate placement to a sponsoring toy or kids licensed product company.
Lopez, is an industry veteran who has worked with companies such as Marvel, Disney, Nickelodeon, LEGO, Li & Fung to name a few all of which have garnered him experience in licensing, design, product development and manufacturing. ToyBackers, CCO and other Co-Founder Jason Reilley, also brings his vast design experience having worked as art director with companies like REVLON, and various other high profile companies since 1994.
ToyBacker Boast substantial support and backing from vendor partners in Hong Kong with whom they have long standing history.
ToyBacker is now accepting campaign and contributor submissions online.
Has the time come for a toy-based crowdfunding site? Can ToyBacker become an incubator for innovation in the industry? Is crowdfunding the future of toy making? Join the discussion in the comments below.