Ketto, Asia’s largest crowdfunding platform, began a revolution in India’s online fundraising ecosystem. Ketto’s intervention in fuelling a wide variety of sustainable causes, right from fundraising for start-ups to fundraising for medical purposes, the platform has been able to weave a story of disruption. The outstanding reviews of the platform across various media outlets speak the volume of the success of its campaigns. The idea of Ketto was brainstormed at a TED conference, which grew on to become a revolution. Varun Sheth founded Ketto on August 15, 2012, and the platform has since become a carrier of change for many. He was joined by Bollywood actor and humanitarian Kunal Kapoor and Zaheer Adenwala, whose powerful blend of techno-disruptor vision gives Ketto an edge over other crowdfunding platforms.
At its core, crowdfunding refers to the process of gathering funds or money, from a large group of people. With the presence of the internet and social media today, we are a part of a much larger community which has enabled us to arrange funds from people across the World Wide Web.
For example, Nitesh, an alumnus of IIT-Kanpur and IIM-Calcutta was battling with stage III metastasised cancer and had developed 12 tumours in his bilateral lungs, pelvis and abdomen. The criticality of his condition could not be taken care of by the doctors in India, and they recommended going to America for his treatment. Being from a lower-middle class family, his family couldn’t afford the money for his treatment abroad and so they started a campaign on Ketto. Within a few weeks, Rs 1.32 crore was raised by 4,186 donors who helped Nitesh travel to the US and undergo treatment.
The organisation has also been at the forefront when it comes to fundraising for an innovative cause. In 2016, Narayana Peesapaty, an entrepreneur from Hyderabad approached Ketto to raise funds for the expansion of the production chain of his company ‘Bakeys’. As a unique initiative, Bakeys developed a first-of-its-kind idea of creating edible cutleries made of dough from a mixture of sorghum, rice and wheat flours, kneaded with hot water. Starting with simple spoons, Bakeys ended up creating forks, soup spoons, dessert spoons, yoghurt spoons and crockery as well. At its foundation, the company wanted to provide an alternative to disposable plastic cutleries. Bakeys required a fund of Rs 10 lakh, but as soon as their campaign started running on Ketto, it drew attention from all over the world. In a matter of a few days, the company raised almost Rs 25 lakh with the help of 1,571 supporters.
One of Ketto’s biggest and most successful campaigns has been with U&I, a charitable organisation based out of Bengaluru. U&I Teach, through their project #HeroUp, envisioned launching an after-school programme to educate the underprivileged youth and help them stay in school. They aimed to provide individual attention to students with a 1:3 teacher to student ratio and guide the students through tuitions in subjects like maths and science. Further, they wanted to reach out to the students who had dropped out of school and provide them with a better opportunity of learning. U&I’s campaign on Ketto drew massive attention, and they were able to raise Rs 2.07 crore. After successfully raising the required funds, the organisation ensured a 100 per cent pass rate of their students, where over 80 per cent of 10th graders student scored more than 70 per cent in their board exams. They were also able to provide the students with holistic development through career counseling and medical camps.
Crowdfunding also comes into play when people are not financially ready for such expenses. When they approach a bank, there are lengthy procedures to give loans which in-turn does help during an emergency. Through platforms like Ketto, people are able to reach out to individuals outside their inner circle and raise money from them who are willing to support. They can share the campaign with other like-minded individuals as well. Crowdfunding has the potential to drive a sea of change. Anyone with a reasonable cause can raise funds through crowdfunding. All they have to do is go to Ketto.org and start a fundraising campaign. Similarly, anyone can donate on Ketto and funds can be raised from any part of the globe.
Ketto has been able to bring together individuals, corporations and even non-governmental organisations to create breakthroughs through crowdfunding. With so many good reviews pouring in over the years, Ketto has helped more than 80,000 people start campaigns and raised over Rs. 300 crores of funds for their causes. So whenever there is need of money you can log on to www.ketto.org create a campaign and go get funded.