The site, which claims a 55% success rate in funding projects, says that it began accepting bitcoin following demand from its users.
“Bitcoin has been making buzz around the internet for quite a bit of time, I don’t think anyone working in the field can avoid that. I think it is a very exciting concept, we are curious and want to play with it,” said co-founder Rick Chen.
The site, which already accepts fiat currency, lets users send bitcoin funds using whatever wallet system they like, but it recommends CoinJar, another Australian firm.
Funds are sent to Pozible, which then forwards them to a project holder’s account when they reach their goal. If the goal isn’t reached, the funds are refunded.
Pozible has a range of features, including a forthcoming subscription crowdfunding campaign feature, in which regular payments can be made.
However, that will be a problem for bitcoin funding, as the protocol doesn’t support recurring payments. Chen said:
“Our subscription crowdfunding is still in beta, the initial release might not allow bitcoin to be used for pledging, unfortunately, but we will be keeping an eye on the development and hopefully allow that in the near future.”
Life isn’t easy for bitcoin crowdfunding sites, though. Emails for Coinfunder, which CoinDesk covered in June, are bouncing, and the site seems to be posting few new projects.
Another site, Bitcoinstarter, is slowly ramping up as bitcoin is getting more widespread.
“Right now the major challenges still tend to be the quality of the projects and reaching the proper audience to fund projects,” says Matt Allen, founder of Bitcoinstarter, which opened in April. “Bitcoin itself is still niche, so the projects tend to be the same also.”
The firm is hoping to get its application on Hive, the OSX bitcoin client that includes a section for compatible online bitcoin applications, and it is developing an API so that it can bring its Crowdfunding Reddit Tipbot online.
Bitcoinstarter has funded 11 projects in total since CoinDesk covered it in June, and has sent 67.6 BTC in total.
“We figured at first smaller projects would be the major driver to start and we’ve been in talks with bigger projects ($100,000+),” says Allen. “But it’s a matter of trust at the moment dealing with these size projects. It will come.”
One of the problems with bitcoin-only projects is that the user base is relatively small.
Pozible might find it easier to curry favour from bitcoin users, because it started out with fiat currency. Bitcoin will simply appear as an option, meaning that projects can take funding in either. That is likely to give a project a greater chance of success.