We just got 150k from Kickstarter and need real financial advice.
September 7, 2014 3:19 PM   Subscribe

My business partners and I just closed a Kickstarter for around 150k! Awesome! But, for the first time, we have real money and now we need real advice.

We're a fully incorporated LLC that just received a nice chunk of funding from a Kickstarter campaign. We really want to keep our books in order and we need every penny of that, so contacting a serious financial person makes sense.

The question is: Can we contact any ol' accountant? Do some accountants specialize in LLC/business taxes? Do they have a special name? We're all Turbo Tax/E-File tax folks who have never made a serious dime and so this whole area feels a little mysterious.

To Recap: Our LLC just pulled in 150k from Kickstarter. We're located in California. We need an accountant- Suggestions/things to know? We have a clear budget and expenses (We know our burn rate and reward production costs), we really just need clarity on taxes.
posted by anonymous to Work & Money (6 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Here is a guy who documented what he did for his kickstarter, and the problem when ending the campaign close to the end of the tax year. He does have an accountant recommendation. Also here is another similar story.
posted by Sophont at 3:32 PM on September 7, 2014

EVERY accountant handles LLCs, small corrporations, and business taxes. It is their bread and butter business.
posted by yclipse at 4:48 PM on September 7, 2014 [1 favorite]

You may not need a special *type* of accountant, but you do need an *awesome* accountant who will be happy to handle your type of business (employees? Health insurance expenses? long-term or short-term? revenue going out all at once or gradually over a period of years? Non-profit/for-profit?).

I found a tax accountant recommended in my area through a Metafilter question, and he was great.
posted by amtho at 6:25 PM on September 7, 2014

Hey anon, get the mods to post an email address for tips. I have a buddy who did a successful Kickstarter for a media project, and I can put y'all in touch.
posted by infinitewindow at 9:20 PM on September 7, 2014


Funded by Kickstarter or anyone else, look for an accountant that has had success working with funded startups in the past.

And who better to know than other startups who have grown successfully and the people who helped them to it?

This is a simple question, but treat it like a mini-marketing campaign to create some buzz and build your network of contacts.

1) This is also a great excuse to reach out and start relationships with business angels and other people who might be interested in investing in your next funding round. It's always easier to break the ice with a legitimate question than a request for cash. AngelList (https://angel.co/) is your friend, but so is LinkedIn.

2) Contact other companies who were funded by Kickstarter, especially if they're physically near and not competitors, to have a joint meeting of minds with the accounting just one thing to discuss. There are certainly things you can give them feedback about too.

3) Check Meetup.com for startup-oriented events in your area both upcoming and recent. Post your accountant recommendation question in the comments beneath the event description.

In every case, mention that you were just funded as in Subject: 'Just funded, have a question'. There are few emails that get opened faster than those from people with money.
posted by jshare at 9:55 PM on September 7, 2014

You need an accountant who is very familiar with the new, and in some cases quite unsettled, tax and accounting issues of Kickstarter (type) fund-raisings.

The tax and accounting rules typically assume that start-up capital is in the form of equity or loans from the founders or investors. Most kickstarter fundings are by definition pre-sales of goods and services.

Be sure to discuss whether you should be opting to be taxed as a partnership or a corporation, among other things.

Do NOT neglect financial (as opposed to tax) accounting. Start-ups need good clean books to get credit, rent real estate, and often to sell to major merchants that want to be sure they're not dealing with a fly-by-night.
posted by MattD at 1:37 PM on September 8, 2014

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