Indiegogo this morning announced that it has appointed Becky Center as CEO. The new chief exec joins the crowdfunding platform following a stint as VP at healthcare app Healthjoy and eight years in various roles at Groupon.
She'll take over for Andy Yang, who moved over to Meta late last year after two years in the position. His role came during an especially tumultuous time for the site, when then-CEO David Mandelbrot resigned over “personal reasons” amid wider staff layoffs.
"I'm thrilled to join Indiegogo at such a critical time in the evolution of crowdfunding," Center said in a release. "Now more than ever we see the importance of connected communities and what can be achieved when individuals unite to back a shared vision."
It’s undoutedly a transitional period for Indiegogo. The platform has seemingly come to terms with its long-standing position as second-fiddle to Kickstarter. Of course, that service, too, has had its own issues in recent years. Kickstarter CEO Aziz Hasan left his role earlier this month. For its part, Indiegogo has pushed to regain user trust after years of burnout from campaigns that failed to deliver. In February, the service introduced a “Trust-Proven" feature designed to curate legit campaigns.
As Yang told me in an interview last summer:
We’ve had our number of failures on our site, of campaigns that haven’t fulfilled or just, the campaigns have ghosted their backers, and we own up to that. Over the last two years, that’s been a major focus for us, of what can we do from a trust and safety perspective. It starts with education, making sure that the backers understand that crowdfunding is not shopping.
Center’s role will no doubt involve helping usher in some of these sorts of improvements, along with features like “Discussion Threads,” which the service introduced early this month in a bid to increase engagement. In a press release announcing the new CEO, Indiegogo notes:
For the last few years, the Indiegogo team has been laser-focused on product and platform innovation and improving the trust and safety of its users. Center will continue to drive these initiatives while optimizing all aspects of Indiegogo's business to capture growth and find new opportunities for the company to take bolder bets across more categories like the creator economy. Additionally, Center will look to expand Indiegogo's support of entrepreneurs' business lifecycle, where Indiegogo has already pioneered innovative collaborations with the likes of BRANDED and Clearco to help entrepreneurs accelerate their growth beyond the crowdfunding campaign.
Given the current state of crowdfunding, all of that will be no small task for Center and her team. It’s a pivotal moment for both Indiegogo and the category generally.
"We're proud that Indiegogo's leadership team is two-thirds female and that 47% of successful campaigns on Indiegogo are run by women," investor IVP’s Jules Maltz notes in a release. "Becky is an experienced leader with a fresh perspective, and we're excited for the future of Indiegogo."