FIVE SCOOP: Bright Funds is Improving the Experience of Charitable Giving.

A great business idea is one that comes along at the right time, and delivers the right product to a generation who is ready to use it.

Bright Funds is a great business idea.

Targeting a generation of Millennials who expect great online experiences; and want to embrace social good in their daily lives; Bright Funds has created a modern platform for charitable giving.

Frustrated by outdated and unimpressive online charitable giving platforms, Bright Funds founders Ty Walrod and Rutul Davè wanted to tap into the $300 billion charitable giving industry in the U.S., and its over 900,000 registered nonprofits; to deliver a product that the 85 million members of Generation Y would embrace and want to use. 

“We always came across giving sites that were outdated, paid little attention to the user experience, and failed to appeal to donors on both an emotional and rational level,” say the founders. As professionals with backgrounds in technology, finance, and marketing, they had came to expect a lot from online experiences, and were disappointed by what they saw in the nonprofit world.

With Bright Funds, consumers can manage their charitable investments just as they might manage an online financial portfolio. The experience caters to consumer’s needs as donors and is not just a fundraising platform for nonprofits. 

The Founders say they built Bright Funds to make the act of giving to causes we cared about agreeable and empowering—not just about entering credit card information in response to a flood of donation solicitations. To do this, they focused on the user experience and the interface.

They see Bright Funds as a way to modernize an outdated and frustrating charitable giving process. “We’ve researched how best to address each issue and invited a handful of highly effective nonprofits to be a part of Bright Funds,” say of the company that launched in 2012 with 100 invite-only nonprofits including the Knowledge is Power Program and charity: water. “Our members create a portfolio of the causes they care about and direct their giving to these effective organizations in a way that is similar to investing in securities.”

The simple online experience is designed to give consumers a way to identify and make impactful donations to the nonprofits that best fit the causes they care most about.

In fact, the product was built with the donor in mind, “We really tried to listen to what people want and incorporate their feedback into the platform to make the experience as intuitive and rewarding as possible,” say the Founders.

“Our goal is to make it as easy as possible for people to make highly impactful donations. Too many choices can confuse and overwhelm the donor-- It complicates the whole giving experience. Giving should be a satisfying act.”

Bright Funds is for individual giving, but they have a cloud-based “corporate giving” platform as well—built so employees can easily donate through payroll and take advantage of gift matching programs. 

Bright Funds is harnessing the power of technology and innovation for doing good, and creating real and meaningful change in the world.  And they’re delivering exactly what a generation of Millennials is looking for—great online experience, choice, and the empowering them—in a simple way, to have impact in the world of social good. 

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