Crowdfunding / Food and drink / Hardware

This is what it’s like to be 24 and raise $250,000 on Kickstarter in one day

On Sunday, Josh Moses wondered if $30,000 was too much. Today his knife company's campaign has over $315,000 in pledges.

Josh Moses, of Misen, shows off his knife prototypes. (Photo by Tyler Woods)
When I met Josh Moses over coffee this past Sunday, he was thinking over whether to make his Kickstarter have a $30,000 goal or a $25,000 goal.

He needed to make sure he had enough to at least do a first run of the product. The overseas factory he’s working with needed to make a certain amount of knives to make it worth their while.

“One of the main reasons we want to do Kickstarter is to build a community,” he said at the time. “We also need the money to do the production. Getting the mold made for these is a very expensive piece of equipment.”

The 24-year-old recent pre-med graduate launched his Kickstarter campaign on Tuesday morning. As of press time Thursday, he’d received $315,546.
His company, Misen, plans to make one painstakingly-designed knife and sell it for less than traditional retailers would.
“The last two days have been humbling, sleepless, and incredibly exciting,” Moses said by email Wednesday. “We knew we were making a great knife, but we’re completely bowled over by the amount of support we’ve received to make this happen. There’s no way we could have expected such an incredible, thrilling run.”

Slices, dices. (GIF via Kickstarter)

The success of the campaign comes not exclusively from Misen’s coverage here in Technical.ly Brooklyn (hi!), but also from a major shoutout from J. Kenji López-Alt, author of the wildly popular book The Food Lab and managing director of the well-read cooking website Serious Eats. This is what he had to say:

A few days ago, I got a knife in the mail. This, in itself, is nothing unusual. People send me new products to test all the time. Most of them go into the giveaway box that I empty out to friends and neighbors every once in a while. Some of them go into the “I’d rather not inflict this upon my friends even for the reasonable price of completely free” box. This time, the knife is going into my drawer to stay—when it’s not in my hand or on my cutting board, that is…
Ladies and gentlemen, I am going to call it: This is the holy grail of inexpensive chef’s knives. Incredible quality and design, high-end materials, perfect balance, and a razor-sharp edge.

The review got picked up by Bro Bible and other publications. The 100 knives Misen offered at the discount price of $45 on the Kickstarter page sold out quickly. Luckily, they bumped it up and made another option: a $55 contribution, for which you receive the knife. So far, that has 2,928 backers.

Series: Brooklyn

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