While many entrepreneurs struggle to meet their crowdfunding goals—only 4 in 10 Kickstarter projects succeed—Alex Andon, dubbed the “Jellyfish Entrepreneur”, has blown past his goals twice. 

The Duke University graduate successfully raised about $98,000 in his recent campaign for the Chargerito, arguably the world’s smallest phone charger at 2.1″ x 1.3″, and raised well into six figures in his Kickstarter campaign for a desktop jellyfish tank three years ago. 
Andon became an entrepreneur after he was laid off from his job at a biotech company during the 2008-09 recession. Having observed how public aquariums visitors were captivated by the rhythmic pulsating of jellyfish in the exhibits, he decided to explore the possibility of a market for jellyfish as pets. He started with a $100 Google Adwords advertising campaign, which led to his first sale to a Vietnamese restaurant in Seattle. 
And that’s how Jellyfish Art, a company that initially built custom jellyfish aquariums that cost up to $25,000 each, was born. But business was slow and did not scale well. Andon knew he needed a more affordable product, so he retrofitted another company’s tank to make it jellyfish compatible, and sold those for about $500 each. Sales took off.