Indiegogo deal helps crowdfunders make their gadgets

It's working with Arrow to help design and manufacture projects.

Indiegogo has made some effort to help get crowdfunded projects off the ground, but it has mostly focused on big companies so far. What about startups still grappling with the basics of making devices? Don't worry: they're getting some help now, too. Indiegogo has formed a partnership with Arrow Electronics to help crowdfunders produce their inventions. If Arrow thinks a project is both feasible and important, it'll offer direct access to design, manufacturing support and supply chain services (including engineers) worth as much as $500,000. The recipients also get discounts on parts and software, and there's a badge to show Arrow's approval on campaign pages.

It's too soon to say how well this team-up will fare, but it could be crucial in the long run. While most crowdfunding efforts succeed, a sizeable number of them don't -- this increases the odds that the money you pledge will lead to a shipping product. In a sense, it's a seal of approval for cautious backers who only want to support campaigns that are likely to deliver. And it's particularly important for Indiegogo, which is still trying to mend its reputation for hosting the occasional less-than-realistic project. Arrow's help might persuade you to fund Indiegogo projects when you'd otherwise see what Kickstarter has to offer.