iVerse Plans to Kick Kickstarter?

Kickstarter is my favorite crowd sourcing venture, especially for startup comics. It looks as if it’s going to be facing some competition from iVerse, the company that brings us digital comics. The press release is below, but in a nutshell, it looks as if iVerse is positioning itself as a one-stop-shop for creator-owned comics. Very interesting.

iVerse Media, creators of some of the world’s most popular and widely used technologies for reading and distributing digital comics,
announced today the launch of Comics Accelerator (www.comicsaccelerator.com), an innovative crowdsourcing initiative designed to bring more new projects to market more quickly, while providing comics creators, publishing partners and related content
producers opportunities to retain a greater percentage of monies raised.

“Unlike other crowdsourcing avenues, Comics Accelerator was designed so that the vast majority of funds raised go directly to the project being supported, not the website managing the process,” said Michael Murphey, iVerse CEO. “Project creators will also have ready access to iVerse’s pioneering expertise in digital content development and delivery, as well as a suite of targeted marketing tools that simplify and speed the
funding – and subsequent sales – of their finished products.”

Created expressly for the comics community, Comics Accelerator differs from other crowdsource funding models in a number of significant ways, including:

  • Publisher Hubs – A single destination where a publisher’s fans can find all their latest projects and at which all social marketing related to a project can be centralized.
  • Digital Reward Delivery – Immediate fulfillment of digital incentives to backers after a project has been funded, through iVerse’s proprietary ComicsPlus digital comics platform.
  • Reserve Funding Option – Project creators may set a reserve goal so that they can choose to accept funds from supporters if they get close enough to their original target to proceed with production.

But perhaps the most drastic difference offered by Comics Accelerator concerns fees. Like other platforms, Comics Accelerator charges 5% of a project’s attained funding (though creators may also take advantage of iVerse expertise, marketing support and other added value benefits like those cited above). Unlike other platforms, however, Comics Accelerator caps its fee at $2,500 per project. “We saw how successful some projects had been on other sites,” said Murphey, “ and then saw how big a chunk the site was taking. I couldn’t help but think that all those contributors thought they were actually contributing to the project – not the site. Sure, we’ve got costs, but we’re looking to grow this industry fairly and responsibly. We think that publishers and creators should receive as much as possible if one of their projects hits it big!”
iVerse consulted with a number of publishers and creative teams in the development of Comics Accelerator and is already pursuing opportunities to broaden the nature and variety of projects that are brought to fans. “Limited edition hardcovers, ‘one day only’ variants, digital singles/printed trade combinations – they’re all fair game,” said Steve May, iVerse Director of Business Development.

“We’re also determined to remain non-exclusive,” added May. “Project creators can run a Kickstarter campaign simultaneously to their Comics Accelerator efforts. Whatever accelerates the making of good comics.”

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