Business & Economy

Kickstarter pledges topped $320 million in 2012; website names top projects

The MaKey MaKey invention kit includes a plan for making a
The MaKey MaKey invention kit includes a plan for making a "banana piano." The Kickstarter project made it to the site's best-of-2012 list. Kickstarter says 2.2 million people pledged nearly $320 million last year.
Courtesy Kickstarter
The MaKey MaKey invention kit includes a plan for making a
A screenshot of Kickstarter's front page.
Courtesy of Kickstarter


Kickstarter, the crowd-funding site that pairs indie-minded inventors and entrepreneurs with online investors, fully funded more than 18,000 projects in 2012, according to its end-of-year analysis. The site says that in total, more than 2.2 million people pledged a total of nearly $320 million. For the year, 17 projects raised more than $1 million.

Those numbers come from Kickstarter's look back at 2012 — a year in which the site raised $606.76 every minute. The two most popular categories were music, which had the most projects funded, at 5,067, and games, which attracted the most money, at $83 million.

Here are some of the web service's favorite and/or most successful projects of the year (you can also click through the selections at Kickstarter):

Kickstarter says money was pledged by people in 177 countries. And some investors were return customers, with around 50,000 people investing in 10 or more projects. Some 570,000 people backed two or more projects, according to the site's breakdown of its investors.

The funding website also dealt with some growing pains in 2012, when it adjusted its policies on what kinds of disclosures entrepreneurs needed to make when asking for money on the site.

It also sought to clarify the question of whether project backers should see themselves as donors or as investors, in a blog post titled "Kickstarter Is Not a Store." That clarification came soon after an NPR story that looked at what happens when a Kickstarter campaign fails.

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