Innovation That Matters

In Belgium & France, fans buy shares to fund comic books

Publishing & Media

Belgian comic book publisher Sandawe relies on crowdfunding to fund and select new titles. In most countries, comic books are published for a (dedicated) niche audience. Not so in France and French-speaking Belgium, where the ‘bande dessinée’, or BD, is decidely mainstream. Still, it isn’t easy for fledging writers to get their graphic albums published, and 80% of the market is controlled by large publishing houses. Which is why Patrick Pinchart—former editor in chief of a Belgian comic magazine—decided to involve the crowds, launching Sandawe late last year. Like other crowdfunding concepts we’ve covered, participants present themselves and their projects to potential investors, who commit to buying one or more shares. On Sandawe, authors display artwork and reveal plot summaries, hoping to excite the interest of ‘édinautes’—fans willing to pledge EUR 10 or more. Besides being able to gage the potential popularity of their BD before they create it, authors can also benefit from the promotional clout of fans who are happy to promote albums they backed. Earlier this week, ‘Il Pennello’ became the first project to reach its target investment of EUR 36.000, after five months of pitching to the comic-loving crowds. (Related: Crowdfunding for creative endeavoursMusic crowdfunding pops up in FranceSustainable forest supported through crowdfundingCrowdfunding software projects.) Spotted by: RK



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