eSolidar, which launched a crowdfunding campaign on Seedrs on 27 June, has already raised over 50 per cent of its GBP200,000 target and is currently the most successful live foreign campaign on Seedrs.
Portuguese venture capital firm Portugal Ventures has now committed a minimum of EUR50,000 to the company. eSolidar’s founder Marco Barbosa says he is confident of reaching the GBP200,000 target by the end of August.
eSolidar.com is a global giving marketplace, used by Elton John and Katy Perry among 100 other celebrities and brands, that allows people to shop, sell and donate to their favourite charitable causes. It enables charities to diversify their fundraising base and reach new audiences through online charity shops, donations and special charity auctions.
Over the past two months eSolidar has seen 49 per cent growth in the amount of money it has raised for charity.
eSolidar was launched in Portugal in 2014 raising over EUR100,000 through BusyAngels. In 2014 eSolidar was named by EYA (European Young Award) "One of the most outstanding digital initiatives for social good” and “Best Business Potential”. In 2015 the company secured EUR500,000 of investment.
eSolidar expanded to the UK in 2015. The platform has achieved over 120 per cent growth in the past six months, and in 2016 Barbosa was selected for the Forbes “30 under 30 Europe for Social Entrepreneurship in 2016” category.
“This investment from Portugal Ventures shows the trust that they have in eSolidar and means we can continue to grow and help many more charities over the coming months. We would love it if more of our users can own a part of the company and benefit, not only from the ability to raise money for their favourite charities, but also from the growth of the company,” says Barbosa.
eSolidar will use the money raised to grow its UK market and improve its revenue model by enhancing the user experience further, developing mobile native iOS and Android apps and developing key partnerships in the UK. In addition, eSolidar will be creating an employee engagement tool for the corporate sector and providing extra value services for charities to manage donors, access data analysis and raise resources/awareness.
“The consensus tends to be that a company should either support causes or make money, there is no in-between. We believe that you can have both. We are contributing to changing mindsets, where we can have profit and social impact. In fact, isn’t it perverse to believe that non-impact driven companies are legitimately making profit, while not allowing impact driven ones to do so?” asks Barbosa.