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Friday April 18, 2014

Lucky Ant Uses Crowdfunding to Save Local NY Businesses

The St. Mark’s Bookshop has turned to Luckyant.com, a hyperlocal crowd-funding platform, to raise the money it needs to move to a cheaper location.  The campaign recently launched with the goal of raising $23,000 in 25 days in small donations from the store’s supporters. With rent prices increasing and physical book sales decreasing, the store is looking to move and downsize to stay in business. Owner Bob Contant told Crains New York Business that a move will cost up to $100,000, as he is hoping that the Lucky Ant campaign will exceed its $23,000 target. The crowd-funding startup deliberately set a low goal because it operates on an all-or-nothing basis. Campaigns that don’t meet their goals are called off.

This is the second high-profile campaign for Lucky Ant, which is based on the Lower East Side, and went live in January. In May, it helped the Living Theatre raise $25,000 to keep it from being evicted from its Clinton Street home. Overall, Lucky Ant has raised $70,000, and is working to raise money for 20 small businesses around the city, with profit coming from commissions on the funds raised.