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After the Crowds Leave: Finding the Post-Kickstarter Ecosystem

Once the JOBS Act goes into effect next year, crowdfunded projects will be able to attract money in exchange for equity.

"Just like any smart company that has the led in the industry, they (Kickstarter) want to let someone else do it and succeed at it, and then come in and do an acquisition if that is in their plans," believes David Borish, cofounder of one of the latest additions to the Kickstarter ecosystem, CrowdHut, which launched this month .

CrowdHut may be the most complete post-crowdfunding marketplace yet. It offers a store (it takes a 30% cut), publicity and order processing. It plans to offer group discounts for shipping, distribution and fulfillment. And it's focusing on building its team of experts who can advise successful projects on filing patents, getting into Wal-Mart (WMT) and creating infomercials, for an added fee.

"It would not be smart for them (Kickstarter) to start doing this right now. If we're successful and they see this is a way to scale their business, instead of Amazon (AMZ) calling us, we may have Kickstarter calling us," Borish said.

Meanwhile, Outgrow.me launched in May 2012 linking buyers to "successfully funded Kickstarter & Indiegogo" projects, which are sorted by pre-order or available. Founder Sam Fellig says that money isn't the focus, but he is working on a way to add ecommerce options.

"Inventors and product designers are just getting their brands off the ground and don't have the resources to handle requests from every website that claims to be a crowdfunding store. When it comes to Outgrow.me, they understand our vision and are excited to work with us," he said.

Back in the "old days" of crowdfunding, it was more of an unorganized effort by astute businesses. Jun Axup, whose Biochemies DNA-molecule plush dolls raised four-times more money then she'd asked for in the Fall 2011, says she was contacted by manufacturers, distributors and the logistics company Shipwire. She was able to line up several retailers during the campaign although currently, she only sells them at her site, biochemies.com .

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