Crowdfunding is acclaimed as financial innovation, a FinTech, and one of the fastest-growing industries in the financial sector. In Financial Inclusion context, crowdfunding relates to a market-based financing method where assets are raised from huge numbers of individuals in limited quantities/amounts, bypassing conventional monetary intermediaries, and utilizing on the internet platforms to associate with borrowers, regardless of whether to finance a business, a particular task, or different requirements. It is a type of crowdsourcing. The reception of crowdfunding for subsidizing various kinds of ventures is far-reaching, but in developing countries, its awareness and hence investment volume & pattern is either non-existent or lacks substantiality. This study aims to serve as the initial insights into the crowdfunding intention of investors through exploring motivational factors such as Commitment, Perceived Benefits & Product Innovation and provide valuable understanding of the interaction of multiple factors that play an important role in investment decisions. Hence, Social Exchange Theory (SET) & Consumer Value Proposition (CVP) have been used as theoretical bases in this research. The collated data was analyzed using partial least squares structural equation modeling (PLS-SEM). Findings indicate that Commitment has a significant impact on crowdfunding intention and perceived risk has a negligible impact on crowdfunding intention. The aim of this study is to provide information and references to assist decision-makers in Pakistan in understanding how funds can be gathered to support urgent needs for SMEs and startups through this viable medium which can potentially enhance financial inclusion. Furthermore, this study contributes a fair amount of research for policymakers/project proponents/crowdfunding platforms in attaining cognizance of the motivating factors behind funders’ behavior and investment decision.
Keywords: Crowdfunding, Finclusion, Alternative Finance, Innovation, Fintech, Social Exchange Theory, Consumer Value Proposition, Crowdfunding intentions, Commitment, Perceived Risk, Perceived Benefits, Perceived Trust.