Crowd funding is a new and innovative mechanism to finance your new business or grow your existing one.  SCORE counselors are assisting clients who have chosen this new path.  Laurie Christiansen from the Haverhill SCORE branch and Bahar Thompson from the Newburyport SCORE branch are working with new clients from Newburyport, MA: Andrew Mungo and Nancy Langsam, owners of The Screening Room, a small local arts theater in the historic downtown area of Newburyport. 

The Screening Room has been in business since 1982 in Newburyport.  They currently find themselves in the position of being required to update their projection equipment to the new digital formatfrom the current 35mm reel film method.  New film releases on 35MM filmwill not longer be produced by the end of this year, so it means investing in the new equipment or going out of business. 

Although this creates a challenge to smaller theaters, the change is a very positive one.  The digital technology makes all movie theaters greener: much greener.  The 35 mm film filled up land fills from the beginning of movies with reels and reels of celluloid from every movie ever made from every theater that ever showed it.  The equipment may be nostalgic but is not maintainable.  Andrew and Nancy were at a crossroads in their business due to the modernization of movie technology.

They determined the best way to raise funds for this costly investment in their business’s future is to use crowd funding, specifically the new internet fundraising platform called Kickstarter.  Their goal is to raise $60,000 between September 4th and October 16th (the duration of their crowd funding project) which will cover the cost and installation of the new equipment.  Once the conversion is completed, the new equipment will provide their customers museum quality projection of films with a clearer and crisper sound system. 

The Screening Room is a beloved icon in Newburyport with loyal and dedicated moviegoers.  This situation fits perfectly into the crowd funding model which suggests the highest level of success when a business has a passionate, dedicated and longtime customer base. 

To find out more about their crowd funding project simply log onto the Screening Room’s website

To make your own donation visit their project page on Kickstarter. The link will be available only from September 4th – October 16th, the length of the fundraising project.

Andrew and Nancy are very excited about the project and SCORE’s help and contribution:  “Our experience with SCORE was invaluable. SCORE provides a depth of experience not easily available to a business. Their expertise was offered generously and without recompense. We deeply appreciate our SCORE conference.”

We look forward to Andrew and Nancy achieving their goal in this project and are here to lend support and help along the way.  Other local businesses have found success using this new and innovative process. SCORE is gearing up to help clients for whom this as an alternative to traditional bank funding.