Ever since it was founded, crowdfunding platform Patreon has charged its creators 5% of the revenues they make from their fans (or ‘patrons’). Now the company is upping its share on some campaigns, with a new tiered system.
A basic ‘Lite’ tier will still have a 5% revenue share for Patreon, but people who want more features (including the ability to offer their own different levels of membership; get analytics and insights; and priority customer support) will need to choose the ‘Pro’ tier, for which Patreon will take an 8% cut. Meanwhile, the new ‘Premium’ top tier will offer features like merchandise, team accounts and a dedicated partner manager to liaise with, for a 12% cut.
To stave off unrest among its community, existing Patreon creators will be able to use the Pro tier while sticking to a 5% fee for Patreon, or upgrade to the Premium tier but only pay 9% of their revenues rather than 12%.
The change comes as Patreon claims that it will generate more than $500m of payouts in 2019, with a community of more than three million patrons funding 100,000 creators.
Patreon is pitching the change as a move towards securing its long-term future – at a time when another crowdfunding platform, PledgeMusic, is enduring well-publicised financial troubles. “With this change, Patreon is a long-term independent company that doesn’t need anyone else. That’s the move we’re making here,” SVP of product Wyatt Jenkins told TechCrunch.