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Paulo Balzano

Discussion in 'FEEDBACK: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly!' started by Heineken, May 16, 2017.

  1. jbmonkey

    jbmonkey Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Jun 9, 2011
  2. Mo2


    Apr 8, 2016
    i dunno who he is. flipping funny tho.
    jbmonkey likes this.
  3. ncrockclimb


    Nov 20, 2014
    Like most folks, I am shocked that Balzano was able to get so many people to give him money. Then again, Koster (a maker with a history of telling blatant lies, taking peoples money and never sending knives) recently did a kickstart and it is doing exactly what Balzano is doing. He is VERY behind schedule and refuses to communicate with his customers.

    So many people seem more than willing to give their money to people with VERY tainted professional histories. I am sure that there are legitimate businesses getting funding on Kickstart, but it seems that there are a LOT of scams there too.
  4. Heineken


    Mar 23, 2012
    Looks like the "Mars" project has been delayed another year. Has anyone asked for a refund?
  5. adamlau


    Oct 13, 2002
    But I liked his color choices of Sasha Gray and Sasha Gray Pink :oops:
  6. P-Blade


    Apr 5, 2016
    I thought those were stripper names:D
    neal70 and jbmonkey like this.
  7. Mitchell Knives

    Mitchell Knives Knifemaker Moderator

    May 21, 2000
    Most people start Kickstarter projects because they are unable to obtain funding through traditional, honest means.

    That alone should tell you a lot about the kind of person they are, and the likelihood of you actually getting what you paid for.

    These people typically have terrible credit, and a history of criminal activity.

    If someone can't afford the upfront cost of the materials and equipment needed to make a knife, do you really think they are capable or turning out a reasonable knife promptly?

    The Facebook/Instagram culture has cultivated the idea of people with more money than sense buying garbage trinkets from shady sources as some sort of aspiration.
    HWF, sharp_edge and Kevin Wilkins like this.
  8. Alpha Knife Supply

    Alpha Knife Supply Always Innovating Dealer / Materials Provider

    Oct 14, 1998
    Do you personally know anyone who has run a KickStarter campaign? I know a few people who have. The people I know are honest and have the means to fund their projects. They use Kick Starter to show their new ideas to a large audience.

    Your comment is a bad mischaracterization.

  9. Mitchell Knives

    Mitchell Knives Knifemaker Moderator

    May 21, 2000
    I don't know anyone who has run a KickStarter project, and I do realize that not everyone who does matches the description I provided. Perhaps my comments are overly pessimistic.

    I have several friends who have contributed thousands of dollars to various KickStarter projects (technology products, not knives) and never received a thing in return. Hearing of these experiences and countless other online, has soured me to the whole idea of KickStarter.

    The very premise of KickStarter is foreign to me. You are paying up front for a product that doesn't exist (typically), and you have very limited recourse if the project fails.

    I suppose it's great for all involved if the project goes well. If it doesn't, there isn't much the empty handed contributors can do about it.
    Kevin Wilkins, palonej and JohnWE like this.
  10. Drew Riley

    Drew Riley

    Oct 17, 2007
    I'll second this. While I don't know the stats, I'm willing to bet that funded projects gone south are a rare exception, relative to those that make good on their funding.
  11. brancron


    Dec 14, 2011
    Balzano has given no substantive updates on his Mars Kickstarter knives in several months, and has refused to show any progress pictures when asked. The only thing he has shared recently is this instagram video indicating that the knives are scheduled to ship by July 31st: https://www.instagram.com/p/BVp5xEZBBZj/?taken-by=paulo_balzano

    I guess we'll see!
  12. Thomas Linton

    Thomas Linton

    Jun 16, 2003
    In the telephone industry, we have some notion of the odds of a new business succeeding. We know, becasue they have their service cut off and default on their final bill(s). Over 90% of all new businesses fail in 18 months. This is not a matter of dishonest behavior but just a result of how hard it is to succeed. 5% last as long as five years.
  13. looseyfur


    Aug 4, 2006
    Balzy has a long history of dishonest behavior.. it's not simple startup failure math.

    No excuse for dishonesty, especially in such a forgiving industry where tons of folks who don't even deserve second chances, get one.
    Etablinsky likes this.
  14. Drew Riley

    Drew Riley

    Oct 17, 2007
    With respect, I would think that succeeding as a business and running a successful kickstarter campaign, are two entirely different animals.
    At any rate, since the question was raised, I did look into how many funded kickstarters fail to deliver goods as promised. Looks like less than 10% fail to deliver aftr funding, on average, across all categories.


    Not a great number, but really not a bad one either.

    Regardless, I hope Balzano fulfills his obligations, and the the end products are everything his backers expected them to be.
  15. Thomas Linton

    Thomas Linton

    Jun 16, 2003
    It was my impression that the objective of a Kickstarter campaign was to start a business or a line of business. I now see that the business is to be "creative." I gather that would exclude all the gift shops and restaurants that go under.

    According to Kickstarter ( https://www.kickstarter.com/help/stats ) 128,537 campaigns reached their fundraising goal. 230,212 failed to reach their fundraising goal.

    What happens if the fundraising goal is met but the project fails? This suggests only partial refunds at best: "If there’s money left over, offer to return any remaining funds to backers who have not received their reward, or explain how those funds will be used to complete the project in some alternate form." I gather those donating are aware of the risk.

    Delivery on promises is not necessarily related to business success. Kickstarter: "If a creator is absolutely unable to complete the project and fulfill rewards, they must make every reasonable effort to find another way of bringing the project to a satisfying conclusion for their backers."

    There is a difference between failure to deliver and delivery on time or to the extent promised, as the study cited notes.

    Thank you for your post. I have more to learn.



  16. brancron


    Dec 14, 2011
    Today is Balzano's big day, the moment of truth:


    I wonder what sort of "dog ate my Mars folders" excuse he's gonna come up with this time around. I wouldn't actually be surprised if he just completely ignored the whole thing and acted like there never was a Kickstarter and he never took anyone's money. He has already completely abandoned the actual backers (hasn't given them the courtesy of an update since May 4th). He refuses to show any progress pictures at all. This instagram post above is the only update he's given in many, many months, and it's literally just dry erase ink on a whiteboard.
    LCKT707 likes this.
  17. Marko3


    Dec 12, 2010
    I just cringe when a small businessman just plain acts unprofessional. Like was posted above many startups have failed .. but I don't think kickstarters should fail at all . Look at it this way , you have the customer in advance and if your even considering a kisckstart you ideally have a shop and tools to complete project and the biggest part of this whole thing is you have the money .

    So you have the customer the means and the money . To me that is a favorable position for the savvy businesses and I personally would bend over backwards to accomplish this task .
    KELAMA likes this.
  18. P-Blade


    Apr 5, 2016
    So......did he deliver? :D
    palonej and Mo2 like this.
  19. palonej

    palonej Platinum Member Platinum Member

    Aug 5, 2015
    How blown away would we be if the answer to Pablo's question was a resounding YES???

    P-Blade likes this.
  20. Mo2


    Apr 8, 2016
    When you get your packages, expect to see rocks in side. Surprise

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