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New crowdfund plan aids startups with expertise, cash

Crowdfunding gets a new twist Thursday with the launch of an online platform that offers startups ideas and expertise as well as cash. The new platform called JumpStart Fund, marrying crowd-sourcing with crowdfunding, comes from the California-based online community called Jumpstarter, which has been involved in matching investors with technology opportunities. While raising money from the masses on the Internet has become common at websites such as Kickstarter and Kiva, the new fund goes further by adding patented technology and problem-solving perspectives to the formula. “We are trying to give startups tools they need to make their product more successful,” JumpStart Fund chief and co-founder Dirk Ahlborn told AFP. “Crowdfunding together with crowd-sourcing is a solution.” The self-described serial entrepreneur said inspiration for JumpStart Fund came from learning that lack of experience caused many startups to fail and that public patents are languishing in US federal research labs. JumpStart Fund was designed to be an online community where people can share ideas and build businesses based on patented technology, with individuals getting stakes in startups based on what they bring to the mix. “Ideas get submitted, or it can be a patent, and we move it to a work-in-progress stage,” Ahlborn explained. “People apply to be part of […]

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