When you think of finance, charity probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. Greed and excess usually top the list. We’ve all seen Wolf of Wall Street. We picture people that left their moral compass marooned on their forgotten and discarded private island never to be found again. Luckily for us (and the planet), there is a core group of social entrepreneurs disrupting the finance world and working to earn the industry of excess a new reputation.
The social fintech space is booming right now and this list could be a long one, but I thought I’d share three of my favorite companies giving finance a good name.
Bstow automates your generosity by putting your spare change to good use. When you make a purchase with a credit or debit card, Bstow rounds up the spare change to the nearest dollar and donates it to a charity of your choice.
Why I love it: It’s a great way to incorporate giving into your daily routine. Too often we don’t think about the purchases we make or where our money is actually going. Bstow asks us to take a step back and be mindful of our purchases. Also, it’s way easier to justify treating yourself when you are helping someone or some cause in need at the same time.
Aspiration is an online bank and investment service that puts “your conscience and the planet first.” It’s hard to find a company more committed to serving people and giving back than Aspiration. You set your own fee for your bank or investment account. Aspiration lets you decide what is fair. There are no ATM fees anywhere in the world and they give 10% of revenue (not profit, REVENUE!) to charity.
Why I love it: All of the reasons. There is literally nothing I don’t love about Aspiration. It’s the epitome of a values driven company that is doing right by their customers and the world.
Full disclosure: In Lieu Of uses Aspiration as it’s bank. We specifically chose them because of their commitment to doing good. They also have a referral program. When you create an Aspiration account through this link, they will donate $25 to a cause of your choice and $25 to a cause of our choice. That’s $50 to charity!
Charity Charge’s slogan is “support a cause with every swipe” and that about sums it up! It’s a credit card that donates 1% cashback on everyday purchases. Sixteen billion dollars in credit card points expire every year. That is $16 billion that could have gone to charity! Charity Charge is on a mission to make that a reality.
Why I love it: I am one of over 30% of people that lets their credit card rewards points expire. Admit it, you’ve done it, too. Racking up miles is all well and good, but if you never use them, you should put them to work for good. Charity Charge makes that a snap.
Looking for another way to put your good karma on autopilot? Join the ILO Club. In lieu of buying ridiculously expensive coffee, donate $5 per week to a new nonprofit making the world a better place. It’s good karma on autopilot. To join the club, click here.