Coinbase Giving: how we are operationalizing our commitment to Pledge 1%
Prior to our recent direct listing, in April 2020, we partnered with Pledge 1% to build a corporate giving program that would commit 1% of Coinbase profits, equity, and employee time toward charitable activities that leverage the power of crypto to help people around the world.
We partnered with Pledge 1% because realize that our vision of creating economic freedom for every person and business in the world is ambitious. We also know that for it to become a reality, we’ll need to not only build the products and services that our customers want, but to also think creatively about how we can ensure that crypto gets into the hands of those who need it most.
We are calling our Pledge 1% program Coinbase Giving. It will be a charitable program within Coinbase, focused on a common goal of increasing economic freedom for every person and business in the world. One of the limitations of traditional corporate philanthropy is that most companies don’t have the resources or the expertise to manage their philanthropic programs, instead they rely on funding charitable organizations to achieve their public-spirited goals. Coinbase Giving is taking a different approach: a hybrid model following the path forged by other tech leaders. Coinbase Giving will not only support charities that share our mission and values, but we’ll also manage our own programs from start to finish.
The charities that we will support and programs that we will drive will fall into three broad categories:
Increasing education around, and access to, cryptoAccelerating the development of crypto protocols that underpin the cryptoeconomyFostering the next generation of crypto talent, no matter where they are located
Our three initial areas of focus
1. Bringing GiveCrypto into the Coinbase family as a Coinbase 501(c)(3) foundation. GiveCrypto was founded in 2018 with a mission to financially empower people by distributing cryptocurrency globally. We’ve long had a relationship with GiveCrypto, but by transitioning its efforts into a private foundation of Coinbase we can substantially increase funding, and offer Coinbase customers the opportunity to give directly to the programs that they want to support.
The new foundation will focus its efforts on supporting and directly managing programs that seek to equalize access to financial services around the globe; use direct crypto contributions to alleviate financial hardship and unsafe situations; and encourage crypto entrepreneurship to create economic freedom.
That reach can be truly life-changing.
2. Expanding the Crypto Community Fund. We believe helping to connect and grow the cryptoeconomy is essential to creating economic equality. Our Crypto Community Fund aims to grow and improve the entire crypto industry, while making it simpler to use and more secure for everyone.
We piloted the Crypto Community Fund in October 2020 to help accelerate research and open-source projects. We have funded $200K to date — $100K to Stanford Cryptography and $100K to a Bitcoin Core development developer. In 2021 we expect to fund $2M to expand this program, and we know much more is possible.
3. Launching Coinbase’s partnership with Base 11 to develop the next generation of (diverse) crypto talent. We’re also announcing today our commitment to be a 3-year “Game Changer” partner of Base 11, a nonprofit STEM workforce and entrepreneur development organization that empowers women and underrepresented minorities with the access, awareness and belief needed to succeed in Next Frontier Industries of the 21st century.
As part of this partnership, we will be developing a Crypto Innovation Challenge program that will be unveiled later this year, to help cement crypto as a frontier industry and unlock its future talent. We’re proud to partner with Base 11 as they empower the next generation of crypto entrepreneurs and users.
Employee match program
In addition to the initiatives outlined above, beginning in June, we will begin matching on a one-for-one basis any employee donation to a qualified 501(c)(3) (or international equivalent) up to $500. As we pilot this program this year, we’re excited to support our team and the causes and organizations they are passionate about.
We believe strongly in the power of crypto to address any number of the inequities of the current financial system. But we also recognize that there is a lot to be done when it comes to creating economic freedom for every person and business in the world. As Coinbase and the cryptoeconomy grow, we’re committed to doing our part to ensure that we never stray far from crypto’s original promise of an open financial system.
We’re just at the beginning — but we’re here for the long term.
About Pledge 1%
Pledge 1% is a global movement that inspires, educates, and empowers every entrepreneur, company, and employee to be a force for good. Over 12,000 members in 100 countries around the world have used Pledge 1%’s flexible framework to ignite billions of dollars and hundreds of thousands of volunteer hours in new philanthropy. To learn more about Pledge 1%, and how your company can get involved, visit pledge1percent.org.
Let’s get more people into the cryptoeconomy — An update to corporate giving at Coinbase was originally published in The Coinbase Blog on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.