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Kickstarter crowdfunding platform gets official UK launch date

Start-up businesses will have a new way to raise capital for their projects from the end of the month

Kickstarter, the online funding platform for creative projects, is launching in the UK on 31 October.

Everything from films, games and music to art, design and technology projects can be funded by private individuals and companies via the platform.

Launched in the US in April 2009, Kickstarter says over $350 million (£218m) has been pledged by more than 2.5 million people to fund more than 30,000 creative projects.

From this week UK start-ups can start planning and building their projects by clicking on the "start a new project" button on the Kickstarter start page and selecting the UK as their country.

When the site is ready for projects to launch on 31 October, participants will get an email letting them know that they can hit the "launch" button whenever they're ready to seek funding.

Like in the US, Kickstarter will charge a 5 percent fee to successfully funded projects and no fee to unsuccessfully funded projects.

Payment processing fees for UK projects are similar to those for US projects too. The processing fees for pledges less than £10 are charged 5 percent + £0.05, and pledges of £10 or greater are charged 3 percent + £0.20.

Seedrs, the FSA regulated, UK-based investment platform, says it "welcomes" the arrival of Kickstarter.

Although both companies get labelled as "crowdfunding" businesses, Seedrs points out differences. Seedrs is a fully financially-regulated investment platform for instance. It also usually attracts much larger individual contributions.

Jeff Lynn, CEO of Seedrs said, "Although our business models are fundamentally different, because Kickstarter enjoys such a high profile from their huge success in the US, their arrival will help to raise the profile of the attraction of investing in start-up projects and businesses."

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