Tech startup launches philanthropy platform to help employees donate to charity
[May 26, 2021: Miranda Perez]
Americans donated $450 billion to charity in 2019, and donations from individuals accounted for 69% of total giving that year — the fourth time in the last five years that charitable giving by individuals over corporations has grown.
A Boston-based corporate-philanthropy technology company is looking to fuel that trend further by making it even easier for people to give back.
Givinga has launched Philantech cloud technology, a set of custom software tools to enable businesses to integrate and manage charitable-giving capabilities at the individual level. Typically Givinga offers API solutions for enterprise-level corporate partners to facilitate workplace giving, startup’s diving into charitable giving and financial services companies offering social impact charitable investment funds.
“This is a launch with active relationships behind it, but we're super excited about bringing it to the market, because it's an extremely differentiated product from what's out there right now,” CEO Joe Phoenix said.
To Phoenix, Givinga’s technology facilitates so-called "one-dimensional giving" to charities — from one person to a charity, or from a group of people to a charity.
The business model is to offer the software as a service. Givinga licenses its technology to clients, who then implement it into their offerings to enable employees or consumers to send money to charities of their choice.
“There are a lot of giving platforms out there. But there is no platform that use technology to focus on allowing individuals no matter how large they are, or how small they are to give,” Phoenix said.
Prior to becoming CEO at Givinga, he served as head of global investments at global financial management firm Putnam Investments.
“I spent 25 years at the same firm. I turned 50 in my 25th year and woke up one day feeling that there was more that I needed to do in the giving-back category,” Phoenix said.
With the help of family-and-friends funding, Givinga’s seed stage round closed at $2 million last November, with additional funds coming from institutional investors in Boston. Phoenix declined to name the investors.
As Givinga grows, Phoenix acknowledges that in this day and age, companies are being asked by their employees and customers to show, not just say, how they're making a meaningful impact on society.
“We think that this platform is an excellent way to, you know, incorporate not only what the company's doing, but what the employees of the company, and what these platforms are doing,” Phoenix said.
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