"I’m excited to be able to contribute to a community of founders who are thinking critically about their giving. Together I believe we can achieve a huge amount of good."
Niklas co-founded unicorn payment company Klarna 2005, backed by investors such as Sequoia, Atomico and General Atlantic. More than 10 years later he quit his operational role as deputy CEO to found tech-for-good Norrsken Foundation. Norrsken invests in entrepreneurs such as Welcome Movement, Doctrine and Karma that tackles the biggest problems in society. In addition to investments, Norrsken last year opened the largest co-working space in Europe for people that tries to improve the world with over 350 members.
"Founder’s Pledge is not just about giving back but ensuring that as a community, we support those in need in the most effective way we can."
Andrew joined Shazam in 2005 as Chief Executive Officer before becoming Executive Chairman in 2013. Andrew is also a Non Executive Director of Marks and Spencer plc and a Non Executive Director of MoneySupermarket Group plc.
Over the past 20 years, Andrew has led the successful growth of a number of technology focused enterprises. He founded and was Managing Director of TDLI.com which was acquired by InfoSpace Inc and previously participated in a management buyout of Thomson Directories.
Andrew was awarded an O.B.E. for services to the UK digital economy in 2016.
Co-founder and CEO
"If you're in the right place at the right time in the tech industry, you can have a huge windfall. To even entertain the idea that you've earned and deserve to keep all of the wealth from a big exit is a shameful intellectual and moral failure."
Kris was an early employee at Yammer and is most recently a co-founder at Clover Health.
"I made the Founders Pledge because I believe it is the right thing to do. We are fortunate to be in this dynamic sector, and have a responsibility to give back. The pledge allows the founder community to leverage the expertise of both Founders Forum For Good and Pictet to do just that, amplifying the impact we can have together."
Brent Hoberman is co-founder of Made.com and SmartUp.io, a direct-from-factory consumer crowd-sourced homewares retailer in the UK and business in gamified mobile learning aimed at entrepreneurs.
Brent is a serial entrepreneur, having also previously co-founded lastminute.com in 1998, taking the company to profit and gross bookings of over $2bn. Lastminute.com was sold to Sabre for $1.1bn in 2005. He also co-founded Founders Forum in 2006, a series global events in London, LA, NYC, Istanbul, Hong Kong and Shanghai for leading tech entrepreneurs.
Brent also sits on the advisory board for the UK Government Digital Advisory Board, is Non-Executive Board Director of Guardian Media Group, TalkTalk PLC & Shazam and acts as the Prime Minister’s Business Trade Ambassador. Brent was awarded a CBE in 2015.
Founder & CEO of Farfetch
"Founders Pledge is a revolutionary approach to early stage philanthropy that allows founders of tech companies to “give back” at a point where they may be worth a lot on paper but very little (if anything!) in cash. Hopefully, the pledge will send a message to the global tech community that tech businesses may not be the biggest contributors to not-for-profit organisations and NGOs today, but they will be in the future and that we are materially committed to the values of corporate social responsibility."
José Neves is founder and CEO of Farfetch, a global community of over 300 fashion boutiques offering an inspirational shopping experience to fashion-forward consumers.
In creating Farfetch, José brought together his interests and experience in fashion, technology, design, wholesale and retail to create a business that gives boutiques the opportunity to compete with the leaders of fashion e-commerce. Farfetch now features more that 300 boutiques, has customers in over 180 countries and receives an average of 9 million hits monthly.
José has received numerous accolades, including The Business of Fashion’s 500 People Shaping the Fashion Industry in 2013, Ernst & Young’s 2013 Entrepreneur of the Year and Vogue’s DirectorsOf.COM Top Entrepreneur in 2011.
Founders Pledge is a revolutionary approach to early stage philanthropy.
José Neves, Founder & CEO of Farfetch
Founder of Sunrise
Pierre is the Co-founder and CEO of Sunrise, the successful calendar app set to reinvent the way you manage your time. Sunrise was used by millions of people and in 2015 was acquired by Microsoft for $100M. Passionate about building great products with an amazing team, Pierre now resides in NYC.
Founder & President of Tripping
Jen founded Tripping.com and helped grow it into the world's largest site for vacation homes with over 12 million properties in 150,000 destinations worldwide. Prior to founding Tripping, Jen helped build venture-backed companies in Silicon Valley, Central America, and London. She was also one of the first employees of the ticket marketplace company StubHub, where she developed their brand and marketing group before its $285 million acquisition by eBay.
Jen spends her free time exploring new places, mentoring entrepreneurs, and commiserating over Cal’s NCAA rankings. She's excited to be part of FP since it's a chance for her to give back and create a positive impact on the world outside of her office.
Founder and CEO
"It is my privilege to be committing a share of my exit proceeds to causes that I feel strongly about. My current focus is on building MOVE Guides - helping 21st century organisations move people talent worldwide to solve global challenges - and creating value for our employees and shareholders. I am grateful that the Founders Pledge provides a platform to give back at exit, so I can now focus on leading MOVE Guides to success, and then contributing to the development and success of others through charitable donations."
Brynne Herbert is the founder & CEO of MOVE Guides. Under her leadership, MOVE Guides has grown from an idea to an award winning start-up working with the world’s largest companies & supporting moves across 6 continents. Brynne is part of London’s Tech City Insider 100 & the SV2UK 100 (CEOs of 100 top UK tech companies), & was nominated to the 2015 Google Award for Women in Digital. She is also a recognized subject matter expert on talent mobility, entrepreneurship & gender equality, & a registered Global Mobility Specialist with Worldwide ERC. Brynne has lived in the US, EMEA & APAC, & speaks 5 languages. Prior to starting MOVE Guides she worked as an investment banker at Lehman Brothers & Standard Chartered.
Founder and CEO
Miguel directs all architecture, design, and construction activities at WeWork. Previously, he created the design framework and led the national retail roll-out for American Apparel and was involved in the early-stage development of several companies. He earned his BA from the University of Oregon.
Ali is the founder of Tulip Retail and formerly the CEO and founder of Well.ca, Canada's largest online health, baby and beauty store.
Ali spends most of his time planning for growth, managing staff, and developing technologies. Prior to founding Well.ca, Ali worked at Research In Motion (RIM) where he independently developed BrickBreaker, the most popular Blackberry game that is now on more than 15 million devices worldwide. In 2005, Ali was RIM's youngest patent recipient. Prior to RIM, Ali worked in Microsoft's Redmond office on the Office 2007 User Interface Team.
"I don't see the Founders Pledge as a tick box on my conscience, but rather a vehicle to start making a difference with early on in my life. Usually the focus in any pledge is how much people are giving, where with the Founders Pledge the focus is on causes and what social good you as a pledgor -- and as part of a community of pledgors -- can drive. This new approach to giving back has been very refreshing indeed."
Ambarish Mitra is one of the pioneers of augmented reality. Rish started his tech career in 1997 as a high school drop-out entrepreneur on a noble topic of Women Empowerment in India, which successfully IPO'd in 2000. Today Rish is the CEO & co-founder of Blippar, the leading visual browser & fastest growing augmented reality player. Under his direction, Blippar has grown from groundbreaking idea to an industry leader with 250+ employees, 10 offices & 50million+ users. With a vision to create the ultimate physical world browser, Ambarish, has been widely recognized for his unconventional business thinking & people-driven philosophical approach to management.
"I joined Founders Pledge as it's a great way for entrepreneurs to give back and have a positive impact on society. For me, it's the right thing to do. "
Dan Macklin is a Co-Founder at SoFi, a new kind of finance company taking a radical approach to lending and wealth management. To date, SoFi has lent more than $16 billion in mortgages, personal loans and student loan refinancing. In September 2015, SoFi announced a $1 billion Series E funding round led by SoftBank. Prior to SoFi, Dan spent twelve years at Standard Chartered Bank across London, Singapore and Shanghai. Dan is a graduate of the University of Durham in England and the Stanford Graduate School of Business and has been interviewed by publications including Bloomberg, CNBC, Financial Times, Forbes, Reuters and Wall Street Journal. Dan was named as one of the 25 Inspiring Entrepreneurs to Watch in 2017 by Inc and, much to the amusement of his kids, was selected as one of the 40 Coolest People Under 40 in Silicon Valley by Business Insider. @macklindan
Founders Pledge is a great way for entrepreneurs to give back and have a positive impact on society.
Dan Macklin, Founder, SoFi
Co-founder of Blockchain
"Talent is distributed equally but opportunity is not. I've been the very fortunate recipient of thoughtful guidance, wisdom, and support through my life -- and it is my hope to provide enduring contributions to communities with a giving focus on education and entrepreneurship. We must re-imagine our world and build a better future. Founders Pledge aligns with my core values and I'm proud to make a public pledge of support for important causes. "
Nicolas has a love for the outdoors and traveling; he attributes much of his entrepreneurial insight to his personal journeys around the world. He holds degrees in Business with an emphasis in Leadership Studies and International Political Economy. He’s taught English and conducted poverty reduction assessments in rural India prior to spending the past decade growing startups.
A life long technologist and serial entrepreneur, he’s trilingual, and has a deep passion for positive digital disruption. He was the Second Employee and Partner at PipelineDeals where he focused on product development and management. In 2013 he co-founded Blockchain. Winner of the 2015 European Digital Leader award for his inspiring and innovative contribution to initiate progress in the digital world, Nicolas accumulated over 350K miles last year doing FinTech advocacy, keynoting conferences, and attending grass roots meet ups across the Europe and around the world. His media appearances include the NYT, NPR, WSJ, Financial Times, Wired, Forbes, Entrepreneur, CNN, CNBC, TechCrunch, CNET, ZDNET, Marketwatch and many more. Follow Nicolas on Twitter at @niccary.
"Entrepreneurship is about looking to the future and building things that other people can't imagine to be possible. For many people being an entrepreneur seems like an impossibility; the Founders Pledge helps me remember that I was lucky enough to have a chance that some people don't have. I want to do everything I can to make sure everyone has the opportunity to look to the future and make their vision a reality."
Nick is the founder & CEO of Nutmeg, the world's first online investment management company that offers complete transparency to all its customers. Following a degree at the University of Exeter, Nick worked at Barclays & Brewin Dolphin as a divisional director & investment manager. Nick's industry & investment views are respected globally & he frequently appears on Bloomberg, CNBC & BBC. He has also been a guest lecturer at academic institutions including Harvard & has represented UKTI around the world, promoting the benefits of doing business in Britain. Nutmeg's vision of empowering a nation of investors allows Nick to combine his love for education & entrepreneurship. Nick has an MBA from Stanford University.
Co-founder of Fanduel
Tom in the co-founder and former CPO at FanDuel, the world's largest daily fantasy sports site. Tom also co-founded two previous startups: Groopit (a group social networking site) and Insight Studios (a web design agency) and is working on a new venture at the intersection of AI and workplace learning.
Prior to that Tom was a PhD student at the University of Edinburgh in Machine Learning and Computer Vision, but left to start Groopit.
Tom is passionate about creating products that are fun and exciting to use, and applying game mechanics in ways they haven't been previously.
"After talking to David (Goldberg) about Founders Pledge, I came away thinking just one thing: why would anyone not do this? It's kind of a no-brainer."
David Klein is CEO and Co-Founder of CommonBond, a leading fintech company that uses data and technology to lower the cost of student loans. Since launching in 2012, CommonBond has raised over $1 billion across equity and debt, and is the first and only company in finance with a 1-for-1 social mission: for every loan funded on CommonBond's platform, the company funds the education of a student in need in partnership with Pencils of Promise. A recognized authority on fintech and student debt, David's perspectives have been featured in The Wall Street Journal, Forbes, CNBC, TechCrunch, Inc. and more. He was featured on the Crain's New York 40 Under 40 list in 2016.
Before starting CommonBond, David worked in consumer finance at American Express, where he led a $250M annual business. He started his professional career at McKinsey & Company, where he advised clients in the financial services industry. David graduated from Brandeis University with a B.A. in Politics, Economics and International Business, and attended the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. David is also a former Board Member of the Bronx Charter School for the Arts in New York.
Founder and CEO
Uma is laser focused on advancing the commercial viability of real meat farmed directly from animal cells (sometimes called clean or cultured meat). A cardiologist by training, he believes that meat should not only be safe and sustainable but also good for the body and the soul. He has extensive experience in entrepreneurship and business and has invested in a variety of food, medical and tech companies. Uma is an advisory board member at The Good Food Institute, a former Board member of New Harvest and is a leader in the clean meat movement. In addition to his many contributions in the health sciences, he wants his biggest contribution to be leading the development of a profitable and a world positive future food system. Fun fact: Uma has rescued several people in cardiac arrest.
Founder and Chairman
Bibop G. Gresta is a leader in finance, transportation, media and startups. He is a world-renowned speaker focused on transportation and human mobility.
At age 15, Gresta was Software Development Director at Alpha Center Int., creating a super-learning system successfully implemented in several countries. He founded Bibop S.p.a, a digital content firm; he sold 40% to Telecom Italia for 11bln Italian Lira, creating one of the earliest successes of the Italian New Economy.
In 2003, he founded the Digital Magics Group, a digital media incubator, and guided the startup of more than 70 new companies.
As Chairman of HTT, he coordinates the largest global team of professional collaborators ever assembled.
Founder, Hampton Creek
"Founders Pledge is based around using capitalism to make things a bit better. The idea that I could use whatever personal wealth that I might accrue from this to also do good is what I want to do with my life."
Josh Tetrick is the Founder and CEO of Hampton Creek. Josh founded Hampton Creek in 2011 and has built the company around this question: "What would it look like if we started over in food?" Best known as the maker of Just Mayo, Hampton Creek is innovating to bring healthy, sustainable, and affordable food to everyone, everywhere. Josh's company was selected by Bill Gates as one of three companies shaping the future of food. Josh led Hampton Creek to be named to CNBC’s Disruptor 50 List for 2015, to Fast Company’s lists for most the innovative companies in food and social good for 2015, and to the 2015 TIME 100 New Scientific Discoveries. The World Economic Forum announced Hampton Creek as a top Technology Pioneer in 2015. Josh was named one of Inc. Magazine’s top 35 Under 35 entrepreneurs and Fortune Magazine’s 40 Under 40. Prior to founding Hampton Creek, Josh led a United Nations business initiative in Kenya, worked for both former President Clinton and the President of Liberia, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, and taught street children as a Fulbright Scholar in Nigeria and South Africa.
Founder at Planet
Will Marshall is the Co-Founder and CEO of Planet. He leads the overall company strategy and direction. Prior to Planet, Will was a Scientist at NASA/USRA where he was a systems engineer on lunar orbiter mission “LADEE”, a member of the science team for the lunar impactor mission “LCROSS”, served as Co-Principal Investigator on PhoneSat, and was the technical lead on research projects in space debris remediation. Will received his Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Oxford and his Masters in Physics with Space Science and Technology from the University of Leicester. Will was a Postdoctoral Fellow at George Washington University and Harvard
"I am extremely grateful to the Founders Pledge for making it so incredibly seamless to pay it forward as a business founder. I have received a huge amount of help over the past two years, and this goes a small way to repay some that where most needed. The collective good that can be achieved is colossal!"
Physicist - Bicyclist - Designer - Entrepreneur. Emily began reading Physics at Oxford University, but left to study Product Design in Brighton and Milan before an entrepreneurial scholarship in America. At university Emily created a radical innovation to save cyclists' lives and started Blaze, to make it a reality. The company is only 2 years old, but after running one of the first successful Kickstarter campaigns in the UK, it has gone on to raise over £1.5M investment from the likes of Index Ventures, Pembroke VCT and the Branson Family. Their flagship product, the Laserlight, is shipping to 51 countries around the world and is the first in a range of products for urban cyclists. Blaze recently secured a contract with Transport for London to trial its Laserlights on 200 Santander Cycles with a view to extending to the entire fleet.
"It's a real privilege to be participating in an initiative that focuses founders' minds on giving back and is helping to grow a culture of philanthropy in the UK's tech ecosystem."
Sarah is the co-founder and COO of video ad tech company Unruly, named as the UK’s #2 Fastest Growing Tech Company (Deloitte, 2012), where she ensures the company delivers the most awesome social video campaigns on the planet.
Unruly is the leading programmatic platform for social video advertising, powered by UnrulyX, the first supply side platform (SSP) for mobile video to offer scaled delivery of native ad formats. Unruly has 15 offices, employs 200 people and is backed by Amadeus Capital Partners, Van den Ende & Deitmers and Business Growth Fund.
Sarah was voted one of 15 Women to Watch in Tech by Inc., one of Europe’s Inspiring Fifty, #4 in Digital Spy's Top 10 Women in Tech, and one of 10 London-Based Entrepreneurs to Watch by Forbes. She is an associate lecturer at the University of Cambridge, where she teaches a course in Mash-Ups, Memes and LOLitics: Online Video Culture and the Screen Media Revolution.
Founder & CEO
Kathryn is the Muse's CEO and number one swashbuckler. Kathryn has spoken at MIT and Harvard, appeared on The TODAY Show and CNN, and contributes on career and entrepreneurship to the Wall Street Journal and Harvard Business Review. She was named to Forbes’ 30 Under 30 in Media and Inc.’s 15 Women to Watch in Tech. Before founding The Muse, Kathryn worked on vaccines in Rwanda and Malawi with the Clinton Health Access Initiative and was previously at McKinsey. Say hi on Twitter @KMin.
Founder and CEO
JB founded Criteo in 2005 and has driven its growth into a truly global organization with technology as its heart beat and its clients as its focus. Having transitioned his role from CEO to Executive Chairman in 2016, JB returned to the role of CEO in April 2018. A serial entrepreneur, in addition to a number of start-ups, JB also founded The Galion Project, a non-profit think tank that helps other entrepreneurs to grow faster.
Co-founder & CTO of Swiftkey
"I made my Founder's Pledge because I want to help promote awareness of the responsibility of founders and entrepreneurs to give where there is need, recognising the tremendous opportunities given to us."
As co-founder and CTO of SwiftKey, Ben Medlock invented the intelligent keyboard for smartphones and tablets that has transformed typing on touchscreens. The company’s mission is to make it easy for everyone to create and communicate on mobile.
SwiftKey is best known for its smart typing technology which learns from each user to accurately autocorrect and predict their most-likely next word, and features on more than 250 million devices to date. SwiftKey Keyboard for Android is used by millions around the world and recently went free on Google Play after two years as the global best-selling paid app. SwiftKey Keyboard for iPhone and iPad launched in September 2014, following the success of iOS note-taking app SwiftKey Note.
SwiftKey has been named the No 1 hottest startup in London by Wired magazine, ranked top 5 in Fast Company’s list of the most innovative productivity companies in the world and has won a clutch of awards for its innovative products and workplace.
Ben has a First Class degree in Computer Science from Durham University and a PhD in Natural Language and Information Processing from the University of Cambridge.
Engaging in philanthropy following a successful exit is one way a founder can recognise the good fortune inherent in success and 'give something back'.
I learned about Founders Pledge a year or so before my own exit, and quickly saw the value in both encouraging founders to commit to giving, and also providing a framework to facilitate the effective use of donations.
BEN MEDLOCK – CO-FOUNDER, SWIFTKEY
Engaging in philanthropy following a successful exit is one way a founder can recognise the good fortune inherent in success and “give something back”. I learned about Founders Pledge a year or so before my own exit, and quickly saw the value in both encouraging founders to commit to giving, and also providing a framework to facilitate the effective use of donations.
Following the exit, Founders Pledge helped me to think through where I should donate to maximise impact and to explore some of the more challenging questions around my motivation for giving. The process was efficient and painless, and I’m looking forward to working further with the team in future.
Altruism is always a combination of emotional and rational motivations, and it gives our lives a purpose.
Seeing Founders Pledge apply data-science to charitable giving was fascinating and really reaffirmed that this initiative was the one for me.
SARAH WOOD – FOUNDER, UNRULY
What I really like about Founders Pledge is that I feel like part of a movement. It is also very true to our mission at Unruly, measuring impact and sharing a message. Altruism is always a combination of emotional and rational motivations, and it gives our lives a purpose. Seeing Founders Pledge apply data-science to charitable giving was fascinating and really reaffirmed that this initiative was the one for me.
What I most liked about the process was that I was locked in. Sounds daft or even slightly scary, I know, but how many times do you think ‘oh I am totally going to do that’ and then it somehow falls down your priority list and you never get around to it.
I know if I hadn’t signed a Founders Pledge, that would have been me too.
ALEX DEPLEDGE – FOUNDER AND CEO, HASSLE.com
Hand on heart, I had never thought about exiting Hassle.com – of course I made up some companies that might buy us for my pitch deck, but I hadn’t actually ever thought I would exit or what that meant. So when I did, I actually found it quite traumatic. Oh, I know... first world problems and all that, but here I was - suddenly wealthy - and all I felt was guilt that I didn’t deserve it. Founders Pledge was a balm to that. A strange kind of therapy.
Signing up to Founders Pledge was very real for me because I was negotiating our sale at the same time. It wasn’t some far off event. I gave it very detailed thought and, quite frankly, it turned out to be a no brainer.
What I most liked about the process was I was locked in. Sounds daft or even slightly scary, I know, but how many times do you think ‘oh I am totally going to do that’ and then it somehow falls down your priority list and you never get around to it. I know if I hadn’t signed a Founders Pledge, that would have been me too.
What I was most surprised about is the level of support I received. The deployment team listened to what I was most passionate about (Mental Health and Sex Slavery of Women), went away, and then came back with a comprehensive research report that highlighted the best way I could support those charities. They identified the best charities in terms of outcomes, data-driven giving and transparency. I now know that the money I’ve donated will actually help to free women from sexual slavery. That means a lot to me. I know the outcome and the impact I have had. My giving was effective.
What I have been most impressed with is the connection to like-minded, off-the-chart empathetic, thoughtful and in some cases mind-blowingly bright people. The Founders Pledge dinners host fascinating speakers that have really opened my eyes to how much good and impact even small efforts can have. At Founders Pledge Forum I left with my intellect slightly bruised, but walking taller and more full of hope than I had been in years.
What I am most in love with is David Goldberg. He’s not only wicked smart, so I know my giving is in safe hands, but he has assembled a world-class team around him. He has started a movement - one I am very proud to be a part of!