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Why Kickstarter is Not in India: Unveiling the Challenges

Kickstarter, the world-renowned crowdfunding platform, has empowered millions of creators to bring their innovative ideas to life. However, one of the world's fastest-growing economies, India, is noticeably missing from the list of countries where Kickstarter is available. In this post, we delve into the reasons why Kickstarter is not in India and explore the factors at play.

Regulatory Obstacles

One of the major challenges facing Kickstarter in India is the country's strict regulatory environment. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) imposes stringent guidelines on financial transactions, particularly when it comes to cross-border fund transfers. These regulations were designed to protect the nation's financial ecosystem and prevent money laundering. However, they create a complex and challenging landscape for foreign platforms like Kickstarter to navigate.

Kickstarter Taxation and Legal Issues

The Indian taxation system also poses challenges for Kickstarter. Crowdfunding platforms have to deal with service taxes, value-added taxes (VAT), and other levies. Additionally, India's legal framework is complex, and the country is notorious for its bureaucratic red tape. Establishing a local entity for Kickstarter would require overcoming numerous legal and regulatory hurdles, making the expansion into India a time-consuming and costly endeavor.

Competition from Local Crowdfunding Platforms

While Kickstarter is not available in India, local crowdfunding platforms have emerged to fill the void. Platforms like Ketto, Wishberry, and Milaap have established a strong presence in the Indian market, catering to the unique needs of Indian creators and backers. These homegrown platforms have the advantage of being familiar with the local regulatory environment and better understanding the cultural nuances of the Indian audience.

Currency Exchange and Payment Gateway Issues

Another challenge for Kickstarter in India is the matter of currency exchange and payment gateway integration. With the Indian rupee being a non-convertible currency, processing payments through international platforms can be complicated. Additionally, integrating Indian payment gateways with a foreign platform like Kickstarter may not be straightforward, adding another layer of complexity to the platform's expansion plans.


While the Indian market offers vast opportunities for crowdfunding platforms, the combination of regulatory obstacles, taxation and legal issues, competition from local platforms, and currency exchange and payment gateway challenges have kept Kickstarter from entering India. However, with the continued growth of India's economy and the increasing demand for crowdfunding, it remains to be seen whether Kickstarter will eventually overcome these hurdles and make its presence felt in the Indian market.

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