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April 23, 2014

Fundraising Site Crowdrise Gets $23-Million in Financing

Crowdrise, the charity funding platform launched in 2010 by actor Edward Norton and three partners, said Monday that it has secured an additional $23-million in financing, writes tech-news site TechCrunch.

Similar to crowdfunding sites such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo, Crowdrise allows users to create pages and raise money for a project or cause, but it is exclusively devoted to nonprofit efforts. The for-profit site takes transaction fees of 3 percent to 5 percent but is experimenting with lower fees for specific events, such as Monday's Boston Marathon.

Fred Wilson, one of the lead investors in the new financing round, also provided early capital for Kickstarter, which recently passed the $1-billion mark in total fundraising for projects. Mr. Wilson predicted a similar mass adoption of crowdfunding by nonprofit groups and estimated the potential market for online giving at $30-billion a year.

"It’s going to take time for people [in the charity sector] to realize that these services are not only legitimate, they are the future," he said. "There’s no way to get 100k people who follow you on Twitter to come to your dinner."