Creativity 50 2011: Perry Chen

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Kickstarter and its co-founder and CEO, Perry Chen, are giving Mark Cuban a run for his money. The outlet recently celebrated its second birthday with funding markers that promise a rise beyond the $7 million in total dollars pledged in March.

Mr. Chen is one of the brains behind this platform, which enables crowd-sourcing for funding projects related to categories such as art, design, technology and film, which is leading the pack with collections of more than $20 million as of April. For any amount of money, members must get creative in offering customized incentives to backers, be them services, tools or product. Approximately 43% of Kickstarter projects are successfully funded, and over the past two years, successful projects account for the $40 million in collections.

Having been a waiter, an audio engineer and musician, a writer, an art gallery co-founder and a daytrader, it's not surprising that Mr. Chen himself is a backer of creativity on the site. Since launch, he has helped fund 112 people to: turn oil paintings into video games; laser cut vinyl records into miniature monster sculptures; create a searchable rap almanac; and produce aerial images of the effects of oil spills on the Gulf using cameras attached to balloons and kites.

He not only gets his fill watching projects flourish, especially those he funds, but he also spends his time thinking about ways to market the brand. Consider this tweet: @perrychen lots of thinking about kickstarter product this week/weekend. gonna kick it into a new gear.

Whatever he does, it can't be more creative than the idea for Kickstarter in the first place. But it will likely boost the site's 591,773 backers and 79,658 repeat backers (reported by Kickstarter in April) and only perpetuate the flow of creativity through new projects and ideas.

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