FAQs

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MAKING YOUR PLEDGE

Explore some of the details of the pledge itself.
  • Who can make a Founders Pledge?

    You can make a Founders Pledge if you hold equity in a company. This includes founders, investors, and institutional investors.

  • How much does it cost to participate in Founders Pledge?

    Nothing beyond the pledge donation itself! We provide our services free of charge.

  • Wait, you mean it's completely free?! There's no cost at all?

    Correct. We operate a 100% model with no commission, transaction fees or hidden costs.

  • How do you fund yourself?

    We currently rely on a small group of donors that provide monetary and in-kind support. Also, if you like what we’re doing, you can always donate a small portion of your pledge to us directly. No pressure of course!

  • Is Founders Pledge legally binding?

    Yes. We’re not about empty promises - or “philanthroPR”, as we call it.

  • Can I change my mind?

    You can always choose different charities and change them as many times as you’d like. The pledge itself, though, is binding.

  • Do I need board or investor approval?

    Nope! That’s the beauty of it. Founders Pledge is a personal commitment made on an individual basis. Your donation comes out of the personal proceeds you make upon your own exit.

  • Is Founders Pledge on the cap table?

    No. Because our pledge is based on your personal proceeds from an exit, you remain the owner of the equity, not us. This is one of the (many) reasons it’s so simple.

  • What happens if I never exit?

    If you don't exit, you don't transfer any funds. It's that simple.

  • What happens if the business fails?

    If an exit never occurs, your pledge has no value, so you're off the hook. No harm done.

  • Is there a minimum pledge percentage?

    Yes. We start the pledge at 2%, but the average is around 4%. We can even help you optimise the amount for the best tax break!

  • Do I need to select the charities today?

    No. You can select your charities at any point and change your mind as many times as you like before your donation is deployed.

  • Can I select ANY charity I want?

    Almost. The only restrictions are that the charity can’t be political or involved in missionary work.

  • What if it’s not a 501c3 or otherwise registered charity?

    You're free to donate to any not-for-profit (NFP) organisation, whether registered or not. However, we are obligated to vet any unregistered NFP’s to ensure their purposes are charitable.

  • I already have a charity I support, can I still make Founders Pledge?

    Of course! You would just indicate that charity on your pledge.

  • I have some unique views on charity. How do I know Founders Pledge is right for me?

    We understand that giving to charity is a deeply personal act. The beauty of Founders Pledge is its flexibility to fit your needs. Get in touch - we’d love to discuss.

  • How does my money get to the charity?

    We operate a Donor Advised Fund (based in either the UK or Luxembourg, depending on your tax jurisdiction), which is one of the most common ways people give to charity today.

  • What’s a Donor Advised Fund?

    A Donor Advised Fund (DAF) is like a charitable savings account. When you have an exit event, you transfer your donation to us and we move the funds into our DAF under your name. You can then dictate how the money is deployed.

  • Why would I want to donate through a Donor Advised Fund?

    Simplicity really. A DAF has all the benefits of having your own foundation, but without the administrative burden. We are one of the very few organisations in the world that provides this service for free.

  • I want to start my own charity/foundation at some point, can I still pledge?

    Yes, of course! Founders Pledge gives you ultimate control over where your donation goes. When you set up your own charity or foundation and want to designate it as the recipient of your pledge, that’s no problem.

  • I know I want to help, but I just don’t know yet and haven’t thought about it at all…

    We’re not asking you to change how you give, we’re just asking you to institutionalise your commitment. If you're planning to donate to charity on exit anyway you have lots to gain and nothing to lose. Let's talk.

THE BENEFITS

Check out why it's worth making a pledge.
  • Why don’t I just donate on my own?

    You could go it alone, certainly, but there are several major benefits to joining our community:

    First, we are providing you with the mechanism (through our Donor Advised Fund) to do strategic philanthropy.

    Second, we’re providing you with the knowledge (through our resources and programming) to ensure that your donation has maximum impact. All for zero cost.

  • What tax benefit do I get through Founders Pledge?

    We're a charity, so your transfer to Founders Pledge counts against your taxes as a charitable gift. You only have to worry about a single transaction and we handle the rest. Less headache for you, and you still control where the money goes in the end.

  • What happens if I pay taxes in more than one country?

    We deal with dual taxation as needed to find the best solution for the individual.

  • What kind of programming are you talking about?

    Members have the opportunity to participate in our larger forums several times each year, our smaller dinners hosted by one of our partners every other month, or a variety of less formal meet-ups scattered throughout the year.

  • What happens at a forum?

    Founders Pledge forums are wider in scope than our other events. They are a full day of workshops and presentations designed to engage larger groups of people.

  • What happens at one of the hosted dinners?

    Limited in size, usually around 20 people or so, the dinners create an opportunity to speak more intimately about a specific topic. This allows us to directly connect our members to some of the most important people doing charity work in the world today. We regularly feature eminent academics and leaders in the development and NGO sectors as guest speakers.

  • What happens at one of the meetups?

    Whatever you’d like! Because these are a bit more ad lib, we don’t have a set format. If we’re travelling, we may invite members in the area out for pizza and beer. These can be a great way for members to bring along a friend to see what it’s all about.

  • Do you offer anything besides events?

    Yes! Sometimes showing up in person is out of the question, so we’re building our digital content to make up for it. You’ll be able to take as hands-on of an approach as you’d like. Not only do the partnerships we’ve cultivated give you access to an enormous wealth of knowledge, but Founders Pledge helps show you how it can all be connected and integrated into your own life and business. We also produce in-house research on major cause areas and bespoke philanthropic advisory services.

AFTER AN EXIT

Eventually we'll have to give your money away.
  • What happens once I exit?

    If we hear that you are close to exit, we’ll keep an eye out and then contact you once it’s official.

  • Are there any deadlines?

    While our pledge indicates some specific timelines for letting us know, we are generally flexible and proactive about reaching out.

  • How do I decide on a charity if I haven’t yet?

    Good question! This is one of the biggest advantages of being a part of our community. We work with you to figure out what your interests are and then search out which charity is doing the best work in that field.

  • Why does the contract say that Founders Pledge has the final say on my charities?

    This is a fail-safe in the event that something goes wrong with the charity you’ve already selected. For instance, if they’re no longer charitable, or are engaging in illegal activity, we can’t donate your money to them. Our primary mission is to get you interested and engaged with your philanthropy, and we’d be shooting ourselves in the foot if we didn’t listen to and respect your wishes.

  • Can I change the percentage that I’ve pledged?

    As long as it’s still above the minimum two percent. In fact, we can even help you determine what your optimal percentage would be for tax reasons.

  • What happens if I forget to tell Founders Pledge I exited?

    Our goal is to set our system up so that this won’t happen. While an exit can be a hectic time, we know that our members are more interested in giving to those in need than the average founder.

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