Business Models for Open Hardware

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= report/overview by Massimo Menichinelli



"Platoniq commissioned me a report about business models for Open Hardware, DIY Craft and Fab Labs, for their crowdfunding project Goteo."


From the conclusion: A lesson from Open Hardware: expanding microcredit certificates

"All the previous cases can be seen as the state of the art for business models related to Open Hardware projects. They can be taken as example as they are, or expanded further; anyway there is one aspect that can be stressed out and I think it can be important for managing such open projects: let’s consider how a community could self-fund its projects through microcredit as a license.

Even without considering radical projects like all the Open Money and Metacurrency initiatives that proposes new forms of currencies, we can think more about further joining existing currencies with microcredit certificates like the Open Source Hardware Reserve Bank ones. There is the need of accurate, portable and shareable tools of reputation ranking, able to interconnect different local contexts and attached to existing currencies. The Open Hardware still needs proper open-content licenses, since with current licenses we can protect the design but not the manufactured product or forks. And Open Hardware projects will have the need of warranties and conformance marks about the proper function of the manufactured product. Why don’t we use the microcredit certificates for these tasks as well? We could design microcredit certificates to act as a conformance mark, warranty and license certificates as well: only the community can issue them and use them for its own self-organization." (

More Information

See Open Hardware Business Models, which includes quotes from this report