Kegan and Roberto, the duo behind the Nomad, say in the pitch video on their Kickstarter page that having bought unofficial Lightning connectors and having them not work inspired them to buy their connectors directly from Apple-certified manufacturers. Recently, there have been a number of unofficial lightning cables springing up.
The prototypes were built by a Chinese manufacturer that produces iPhone accessories, according to the Kickstarter page. The duo will choose one of three Chinese manufacturers to produce the final products once funding is complete.
The project is about $16,000 away from its $29,000 goal with about 20 days to go to become a reality. Kegan and Roberto are taking pledges starting at $1 for the project. Backers who pledge $5 or more receive a Nomad, although the lower-end pledge tiers are sold out ($5, $9, $10 and $15 tiers at the time of this writing). Pledging support for the Kickstarter project is more like an investment and does not always mean that you'll receive the final product, as there's no guarantee that the project succeeds and becomes a reality. Pledges aren't charged unless they hit their target goal.
More details on how Kickstarter works can be found in its Frequently Asked Questions.