This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
US athlete Alex Love hopes to compete at Rio 2016 and is using crowdfunding to train as a full-time athlete


The Wave’s crowdfunding project raised a total of £224,000

Crowdfunding for an elite athlete can be light work, but for a small community sports project the experience can be quite different, as the pool of donors is smaller

but sporting platforms are becoming an increasingly popular niche. An area which is rising fast is athletes asking their fans to donate money to take them to the next level. This can be easier than finding sponsorship, but also the skills they learn through a crowdfunding campaign – such as how to engage with fans – can benefit them when looking for a sponsor later. The 2014 Sochi Olympics put crowdfunding on the map in this respect, as many athletes and teams raised necessary funds through crowdfunding. “Athletes who successfully crowdfund

have a great relationship with their fans and are generally strong on social media, which is exactly what sponsors are looking for,” says Emily White, co-founder of Dreamfuel. “We love providing new revenue

streams for athletes, and also showing them how to engage and connect with their audience, so sponsors can work with them in that regard.” Canada-based was formed by

Olympic kayaker Julia Rivard and former gymnast Leah Skerry in 2013. It has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for athletes around the world and sent eight athletes to Sochi, including Canadian skier Larisa Yurkiw who needed to find CA$20,000 after losing her funding through injury. “We started after seeing the success of some of the larger

crowdfunding sites, like Kickstarter,” says Rivard. “Our goal has always been to connect the athletes directly to the fans who want to help them on their journey. “The athletes are outstanding ambassadors and each campaign helps market the site.” Rewards are an important part of

crowdfunding and an elite sportsperson offers a great deal of scope for fun rewards for fans. “They can be as simple as a shoutout on Twitter or as customised as a personalised song or private lesson via Skype,” says White.

COMMUNITY FUNDING Crowdfunding for an elite athlete might be one thing, but for a small community sports project, the experience can be quite different, as the pool of donors becomes much smaller. Many projects have found it’s not easy money and targets can be hard to reach. Campaigns take a lot of promoting both online and off. When rugby club Bury Broncos decided to expand its facilities, it chose crowdfunding to raise £3,500 towards a pavilion upgrade. Club chair, Ryan Lewis, says they took the crowdfunding route, instead of looking for grants, because it seemed like the most achievable way of getting the money in a short space of time, and the project was too small to warrant issue 2 2015 © Cybertrek 2015

many supporters it was confident of mobilising. “Crowdfunder UK got in touch as they could see we were gathering a large base of online support and thought this could be a great project to showcase this unique form of fundraising,” says the Wave founder, Nick Hounsfield. “We saw the crowdfunder campaign as a great way to deliver some core aspirations, such as setting up a charitable trust and delivering more renewable technology and design into our development.” A mix of rewards including bespoke


t-shirts, surf lessons and preview parties were offered and they hit their £150,000 target about halfway through the campaign, ending up with a whopping £224,000. “Building a big audience to talk to

was critical in the success. I would suggest anyone wanting to attempt this fundraising needs a huge critical mass of people to talk to. Social media overload!” says Hounsfield. A PR company was also engaged

to keep up the fundraising exposure, which led to features in national papers and radio interviews. “It totally absorbs your life for at least a month (the length of the campaign) and lots of admin afterwards. However, the sense of support and achievement is overwhelming. It’s also allowed us to go back to our investors with confidence of public support for the project,” says Hounsfield. “If the organisation or project is inspiring enough, crowdfunding could work. The bigger and more exciting the vision, the bigger the opportunity.”


rban surf reef, The Wave, in Bristol, decided to take the crowdfunding route as it had

Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68  |  Page 69  |  Page 70  |  Page 71  |  Page 72  |  Page 73  |  Page 74  |  Page 75  |  Page 76  |  Page 77  |  Page 78  |  Page 79  |  Page 80  |  Page 81  |  Page 82  |  Page 83  |  Page 84  |  Page 85  |  Page 86  |  Page 87  |  Page 88  |  Page 89  |  Page 90  |  Page 91  |  Page 92