1. What is ImpackHub?
ImpackHub is an innovative crowdfunding platform that brings local citizens, business owners and community organizations together to fund growth projects and initiatives that people really want/need in their community.
2. Who is behind ImpackHub?
Read about our founder Sandy Hung here (Bio coming soon).
3. When will ImpackHub’s crowdfunding platform go live?
May 2019! Join the waitlist to secure your membership.
4. What types of crowdfunding campaigns are available through ImpackHub?
We offer two types of crowdfunding:
- Donations – make a donation to a project
- Rewards – make a contribution in return for some kind of perk or reward We recognize that not every business has a direct, demonstrated value adding connection to its community. To allow for as many qualifying businesses to campaign while holding them accountable for their social committment (on behalf of the backers' funds), both types require the Innovator to contribute a set percentage of the income generated from the project campaign towards a community social organization specified in the campaign notes.
5. Will you be offering other types of crowdfunding in the future?
Yes. We are working with partners to become a registered as an exempt market dealer in BC,ON, NB, NS. Once we qualify as an exempt market dealer, we will .bring the following two additional types of crowdfunding onboard:
- Debt – provide a loan that gets paid back over time. We are exploring regular interest loans as well as revenue-sharing and convertible options.
- Equity – become an owner (shareholder) in the project If you would like to be the first to know when we roll out this additional set of crowdfunding offering, sign up to our mailing list here.
Terms also used to refer to “Businesses” throughout the site: Innovators, Entrepreneurs*
6. What type of businesses do ImpackHub focus on serving?
While we are not sector-specific, we focus on servicing companies that have a demonstrated ability to serve the local community and are looking to grow. In reviewing a business’s fundraising application, we look for three key elements:
- Requested funding is growth capital for a well-defined expansion project of the business.
- The business has been established with a minimum of 2 years of operating history.
- The business falls into one of the three underserved pockets of the funding system: women-led, service-based, or non-youth.
7. What if I don’t meet all three criteria?
For more established businesses, we will consider applications that request to fulfill working capital needs. A tip for Innovators considering asking for working capital: you should be able to know your existing financials, margins, cashflows, and projections really, really well.
We will consider seed capital request only at the recommendation of a partner organization. Email us at email@example.com to learn our list of partners.
8. What if I am still not sure if my business/project fits ImpackHub’s criteria?
If you would like understand more about what we look for, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to schedule a chat. You will need to submit your application via the “Start your raise” link on the platform header a minimum three days prior to the scheduled chat so we have time to review your profile and provide valuable inputs to your ideas.
9. I am an Innovator. How can I use ImpackHub to raise money for my business?
If you want to raise money for a business, simply click on the “Start your raise” tab in the campaign header. You will need to open account before you can submit your application. Complete the simple application form and we will respond within 48 hours to let you know if your project is suitable for the ImpackHub platform. If it is approved, we will send you a link to guide you through the process of completing your background check, your pitch as well as some crowdfunding tips.
10. How much should I ask for?
That depends on your project, doesn’t it? To avoid a conflict of interest, ImpackHub does not provide advice on structuring your campaign and pitch (although we do share best practice tips). If you need a bit of tailored help sorting out your business growth cost, we can refer you to a partner organization.
11. How much does it cost to raise money on ImpackHub?
There is no fee for sign ups or campaign submission. Once a submission is approved, we charge a listing fee of $150. Innovators and companies referred by ImpackHub’s partner organizations may receive a discount on the listing fee - ask us. Otherwise, our fee structure is often lower to most other crowdfunding platforms. You will pay a service fee of 3% to ImpackHub plus a credit card processing fee only if you successfully raise the targeted amount. We currently use PayPal as the payment processing gateway, and its charge is 2.9% plus $0.30 on each transaction.
12. What happens if I don’t reach my fundraising target?
If your project does not become fully funded by the target date, pledges will be returned and you will receive no funds. ImpackHub does not charge a the 3% fee for incomplete campaigns.
13. I reached my fundraising target! Now what?
You are required to provide regular updates to your backers on the progress of the project (we recommend monthly). You are, of course, also required to fulfill your campaign promise by the deadline. Also, here is a helpful hint: make sure that you speak with your accountant so that you correctly document and categorize the cash inflow.
Terms also used to refer to “Backers” throughout the site: Community Funders, Supporters, Puffins
14. I would like to support a great local business initiative. I am not the business owner/manager. Can I recommend the initiative?
Yes. Please contact us at email@example.com if you want to share an inspiring local business. Tell us why you would like to support the business with as much detail as possible. Don’t forget to include contact details for you and the business owner/manager so we can follow up with you both.
15. How can I contribute to a project I like?
If you want to contribute to a particular campaign, you simply click on the “Support Now” button of the project page, select the preferred level of contribution, then proceed to the payment page. We use PayPal as the main payment gateway to best protect you. You can pay either with your credit card or through your PayPal account. PayPal will hold pre-authorize your payment but only debit your credit card or PayPal account when the project you are funding reaches its minimum funding target by the campaign deadline.
16. Will I get a charitable donation receipt?
No, and that is because ImpackHub does not work directly with charities. ImpackHub works primarily with businesses registered as for-profit, which often times include social enterprises and community-based organizations. ( In select cases of strong social enterprises that are registered as non-profit, we will make exceptions.) The power of your contribution does trickle down to the charitable sector, nonetheless, as we require businesses that successfully secure their funding from ImpackHub to contribute a portion of their earnings to selected community and charitable organizations.
17. Do I pay any fee to support a project?
No, ImpackHub does not charge backers any fee. It is a good idea, though, to check with your financial institution if it charges any additional payment processing fee.
18. How does ImpackHub protect my money?
We want to emphasize that we know that, by supporting businesses through ImpackHub's platform, you are placing an incredible amount of trust in us. We do not take that for granted. So while we take a general assessment approach, we consciously build checkpoints along the entire application process to filter out good companies from bad ones. To start, we require Innovators to list an "Estimated Delivery Date" for all rewards. This was done to make Innovators think hard about when they could deliver, and to underline that ImpackHub is not a traditional funding experience. At the backend, we require Innovators to provide information about their background and experience, a growth plan, and a functional prototype for products / demonstrated traction for services. All these is to ensure, to our best of abilities, that Innovators have done their research before launching and Backers have sufficient information when deciding whether to back these projects. We are also looking at building sector-specific guidelines and requirements further streamline our campaign submission review process.
19. Does ImpackHub screen projects before they launch on the platform?
Yes, we conduct a review to make sure that all campaigns/projects meet ImpackHub’s guidelines (see the Innovator section of the website HERE for a quick overview, or refer to the For Innovators section in this FAQ). We conduct a general assessment of the business, its growth plans, and its founders and directors’ credit worthiness. Our process takes 2-3 business days per campaign submission. Apart from the general assessment, ImpackHub does not investigate an Innovator's ability to complete their project. Nor does ImpackHub provide any advice or make any claims about the suitability or financial merits of the rewards presented on our platform. Backers ultimately decide the validity and worthiness of a project by whether they decide to fund it.
20. Who is responsible for completing a project as promised?
It's the Innovators’ responsibility to complete their project. ImpackHub is not involved in the development of the projects themselves and distribute and rewards that it has promised to the backers. ImpackHub does not offer any warranties about the technical, logistical or financial merits of the project. It is ultimately the Backers who determine that a project is worthwhile and valid by their decision to fund it.
21. What should I expect if the Innovators I supported are now having problems completing their projects?
If problems come up, Innovators are expected to post a project update on the campaign page as well as emailing it to all Backers explaining the situation. Sharing the story, bottlenecks, and quick wins, and a refined assessment of the project progress to completion. Most Backers support projects because they want to see something happen and they'd like to be a part of it. Innovators who are honest and transparent will usually find Backers to be understanding. It's not uncommon for things to take longer than expected. Sometimes the execution of the project proves more difficult than the Innovator had anticipated. If a Innovator is making a good faith effort to complete their project and is transparent about it, Backers are often times patient and understanding while demanding continued accountability from the Innovator. If the problems are severe enough that the Innovator can't fulfill their project, Innovators need to find a resolution. Steps could include offering refunds, detailing exactly how funds were used, and other actions to satisfy Backers.
22. What is an Innovator's obligation to fulfill the promises of their project?
23. Can you tell me a bit more about the section of the Term of Use requiring a fulfillment on the project?
Yes. While the Term of Use is currently being drafted, what ImpackHub will be requiring all Innovators to agree to before campaigning will be close to the following:
“If your project is successfully funded, you are required to fulfill all non-financial rewards and/or financial refunds to your Backers whose rewards you do not or cannot fulfill but had promised to such as part of your campaign. You are also expected to fulfill the charitable donation obligation to designated organizations if you had opted for a pay-it-forward pitch offering. A failure to do so can result in a damage of the reputation of yourself and your organization as well as legal actions from your Backers.”
24. Can ImpackHub refund the money if a project is unable to fulfill?
No. ImpackHub doesn't issue refunds, as transactions are between Backers and the Innovator. In fact, ImpackHub never has the funds at all. When a project is successfully funded, money is transferred directly from Backers' credit cards or PayPal account to the project Innovator's PayPal account. It's up to the Innovator to issue a refund, which they can do through their PayPal account (PayPal allows refunds for 60 days from the date of charge. After 60 days, Innovators cannot reverse the same charge to Backers' credit cards, so to issue refunds they'll need to initiate a new transaction to send money via PayPal, send Backers a check, or use another method.
25. Do ImpackHub guarantee projects?
No. ImpackHub is founded to start a new way for Innovators and backers to work together, strengthen local businesses, and create better communities. The traditional funding systems are risk-averse and profit-focused, and tons of great ideas never get a chance as a result of the fact that the decision making power of the traditional system reside in the hands of a few.
Instead, we believe in supporting an open market model wheres Innovators and backers alike can afford to make their own decisions on their own risk and reward appetite, take small risks and attempt to create something ambitious and sustainable. With ImpackHub, our goal is to broaden the financial support access to a much wider variety of business innovation and allow every type of backers to decide what they wanted to see exist in their communities, through supporting community business initiatives. Guaranteeing projects will require us to charge a hefty premium and reduce our ability to source a variety of business initiatives. It simply won’t allow ImpackHub to be an effective and efficient marketplace that we aim to be.