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Kickstarter was founded in April 2009 by Perry Chen, Yancey Strickler, and Charles Adler. The company's headquarters are based in Greenfield, Brooklyn in New York, but the website boasts a global presence. The platform is open to backers from anywhere in the world and to creators from the US, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, The Netherlands, Denmark, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, Spain, France, Germany, Austria, Italy, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland and Mexico. Kickstarter has reportedly received more than $1.9 billion in pledges from 9.4 million backers to fund 257,000 creative projects.

Campaigns are designated into one of the following categories: Art, Comics, Dance, Design, Fashion, Film and Video, Food, Games, Music, Photography, Publishing, Technology and Theater. Several creative works have gone on to receive critical acclaim and accolades after being funded on Kickstarter, some of which are Pebble Time, Coolest Cooler, Kingdom Death, and the Exploding Kittens game.  People who back Kickstarter projects are offered tangible rewards or experiences in exchange for their pledges.