The People Who Share, a UK organization working to mainstream sharing, recently launched a new sharing marketplace called Compare and Share. Being touted as the world’s one-stop shop for the sharing economy, their vision is to be the go-to marketplace to share everything from sporting goods and tools, to rides, cars and houses.
At this point, Compare and Share is focused on car sharing and accommodations, but the team believes the platform could be a way to share an unlimited variety of goods. Co-founded by “Chief Sharer” Benita Matofska, who is a longtime sharing advocate, Compare and Share acts as a location-based aggregator for over 8,000 websites supporting the sharing economy.
Compare and Share users can list accommodations to share and, through the site’s directory, see what sharing platforms and services are available nearby. The goal is to mainstream sharing in the way that eBay mainstreamed selling second-hand goods online, and to make sharing “easy, quick and approachable.”
The platform had a wildly successful initial crowdfunding campaign, tripling its target investment of £50k and raising a total of £152,030 on investment crowdfunding platform Crowdcube. As Crowdfund Insider reported at the time, this represents 19% equity garnering investments from 162 investors, with the single highest investment being £25,000.
Of this success, Matofska said the following:
“Tripling Compare and Share’s funding target on Crowdcube, demonstrates the power of the sharing economy. By successfully raising money from the crowd, we now have a community of ambassadors for our business who have supported us in growing the next big global technology brand…[O]ur 162 investors demonstrate absolute support for our big vision.”
In its current crowdfunding campaign, Compare and Share has raised 92 percent of its £100,000 investment target.
Whether Compare and Share can accomplish its big goal of becoming the go-to sharing marketplace remains to be seen, but it's off to a good start as well as an appropriate one for a sharing startup.
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