Ram Malasani, CEO and founder of the 22-person company Securifi, isn’t the typical newbie entrepreneur you’d expect to find on Kickstarter, a wildly popular website where people can pitch projects and receive small pledges of financial support from anyone (see “10 Breakthrough Technologies, 2012: Crowdfunding”). But with weeks still left to go on its campaign for the Almond+, a reimagined Wi-Fi router that can also control connected home systems like a thermostat or lighting, Securifi has raised more than $340,000—far more than the original goal.
Malasani’s company wasn’t exactly starving for funds. Almond+ is a sequel to Securifi’s first Almond product, a smartly designed router that has already sold tens of thousands of units on Amazon since it launched at the Consumer Electronics Show a year ago. Fund-raising is “definitely the secondary reason” for his company to use Kickstarter, he says.