Bulb in Town is the first crowdfunding platform in France dedicated to local projects.
Launched in France in 2013, it proposes to internet users to finance businesses and activities in their local neighborhood or city.
City dwellers can support people and initiatives that create social cohesion in their area: shops and restaurants, craftsmen, associations and museums, but also groups of citizens.
Through the Bulb in Town website, communities can financially back up their favorite businesses, by giving them the necessary funds to carry out their projects and continue to survive, in exchange for an in kind compensation (a mix of goods, services, advantages and recognitions) or for a return on investment. Internet users can get restaurant discounts, be invited to a preview in a museum, get free subscriptions to a magazine from a book shop, give their name to a sandwich à la carte….
Local businesses are suffering from a decrease in bank loans and subventions. This urges them to find new ways to reinvent themselves, and find new means of financing.
Like local crowdfunding.
Thanks to Bulb in Town, La Libraire des Orgues in Paris has turned from classic bookshop to coffee shop, restaurant, and bookshop. The business was having a difficult time, due to competition Amazon and Fnac: this last having opened its doors only 500 meters away. In order to survive, the bookshop had to reinvent itself. That is why the owners of the place decided to create a relaxing area complete with coffee shop and restaurant. The clients saved the business by financially sponsoring it.
Another example is the Musée de Montmartre in Paris, which has terminated a crowdfunding campaign to raise 4000 euros through the Bulb in Town website, in order to cover the expenses for the growth of the museum, and the renovation of the studios of the painters Maurice Utrillo and Suzanne Valadon.
The campaign is now closed and the project has been 130% financed, with a total of 5190 euros raised out of the 4000 euro goal.
Contributions from residents start from 1 euro, and the museum gives donations in exchange, such as free entry passes. Then there are more significant gifts, like invitations to previews and private events.
The Bulb in Town project has proven very successful, with a success rate of more than 85 per cent, which is 30% higher than the average of crowdfunding.