idea #037: Acorns for Charity
Round up spare change for social impact.
If you haven't heard of Acorns, it is an automated savings app that helps people store away extra cash in a simple, passive manner. The basic concept, is every purchase you make through an account that is linked to Acorns, the purchase amount is rounded up to the nearest dollar and the differential is deposited in your Acorns investment account. Pretty nice idea, and helps address the problem many Americans have with not only saving in general, but also planning for retirement.
As an Acorns user, you can select what type of basic portfolio of ETFs your money gets invested into - conservative, moderate, aggressive. Very similar to many other robo-advisor services.
So the idea here is to do the same thing, but instead of rounding up your change into a personal investment account, it is contributed as a tax-deductible charitable donation to a social fund of your choosing.
The product could also work for businesses, where the concept carries into accounts payable and receivable. Every purchase or payment then produces a fractional donation, giving companies an easy way to pay it forward.
It's almost like the scheme from Office Space if it were used for a more socially conscious purpose!
As for the operations, this would obviously be a non-profit play. I believe you could play on the investing metaphor and create bundled and thematic funds for users to pick from, e.g environmental, poverty, research, healthcare, developing countries etc.,.
For those interested in trying Acorns, you can sign up in a minute here.
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