By Karlin Lillington,
Through its powerful ability to remove intermediaries from transactions, the internet excels at making once-bizarre ideas the norm.
Buy things directly from total strangers, send them your money and actually expect the items to arrive at your door, rather than have the seller abscond on a Caribbean holiday? Well, hello eBay.
Give money to someone online that you’ve never heard of because they want to make something that intrigues, form a company or borrow some cash?
That is the rapidly developing world of internet crowd funding, a market worth about $8 billion annually.
As unlikely as the idea initially seemed to many, it has turned out that there were – and are – millions of people willing to give money to people whom they have never met. That notion immediately intrigued an Israeli finance graduate student named Dan Marom.
In 2009, Marom was looking for a subject for his dissertation, just as the crowdfunding phenomenon began to take off. A former entrepreneur with experience in research and development, Marom began to gather datasets, look more closely at the idea and think about where crowdfunding was likely to go.
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