Call me “cynical,” I don’t care. I don’t buy the sudden altruistic business model Kickstarter is suddenly adopting. In the last day or two, the company has issued statements saying it’s now a Benefit Corporation, BC.
What the heck is that? It’s a company that shoots for profits, but its focus is on the betterment of society. For years, most tech companies just tried to please shareholders.
Kickstarter said they want to be more socially responsible so they have legally defined goals to achieve the Benefit Corporation status.
While this is all very commendable, I haven’t seen one newspaper or tech site carefully questioning why Kickstarter has all of a sudden become so humble. I smell a larger story. Other companies that have joined the ranks of BC’s are: Patagonia and This American Life.
As a new BC company, Kickstarter has pledged to donate 5% of annual post-tax profits to arts education and organizations fighting inequality. Kickstarter now goes from Kickstarter Inc., to Kickstarter BC.
Just as a recap, the Crowdfunding company reports that 92,733 Kickstarter projects have been funded by more than 9.4 million people. The Pebble Time smartwatch is still the most lucratively funded project on Kickstarter with more than 78,000 backers pledging $20.3 million.
I know I am sounding a little negative, but I’m anxious to know how and why Kickstarter became a BC company. Kickstarter is a genius idea and we can all learn from its evolution.