Hyderabad-based online donation platform Donatekart has raised $360,000 (Rs 2.55 crore) seed funding from a group of investors led by LetsVenture. Shanti Mohan, Founder of LetsVenture has joined the board of Donatekart as part of the round. Investors in this round also include M S Unnikrishnan (MD, CEO of Thermax), Pravin Gandhi (Founding Partner of Seedfund), Arun Diaz (Advisor of Avishkaar), Pradeep Nair (Regional Director of Ford Foundation) and a few others. Donatekart is currently incubated in T-Hub, Hyderabad was previously a part of Zone Startups India Accelerator.
Donatekart was founded in 2016 by NIT Nagpur Alumni Anil Kumar Reddy and Sandeep Sharma. It is a social enterprise, which gives social organizations an online platform to easily procure products they require. People in India are usually hesitant to donate money to charities because theyâ€™re worried if their hard-earned money will be put to good use. Donatekart claims to eliminate this worry as the donors directly donate products, thus creating complete transparency. The donors are provided with timely updates of how their products are being used to ensure transparency. Donatekart provides its services for free, which it says makes sure all the money donated go to the end beneficiary.
In the 20 months since it launched, Donatekart claims to have helped 450+ NGOs all over India raise close to Rs 5 crore worth products. Over 30,000 unique donors have used its platform to channelize donation to charities of their choice.
â€śIndians traditionally prefer giving in kind than money to charities and we are making the whole giving experience seamless & efficient using a technology platform. With the vision to create a better tomorrow, Donatekart is making sure that Doing Good is easy and convenient for everyone,â€ť Anil Kumar Reddy, Co-Founder and CEO of Donatekart said.
The capital raised will enable Donatekart to strengthen its technology, scale the team and launch new products like Recurring giving, Employee giving and Corporate CSR giving etc. They also have plans to take this platform to other developed markets like US, UK and raise at least Rs 100 crore worth of donations in the next 3 years.
â€śDonatekart addresses the concern many donors have around % of donation which would actually go into a cause and transparency around this. With Donatekart, 100% of the donations goes to the beneficiaries and Donors are completely aware on how their donations are utilised. This puts Donatekart in a unique position to be the go-to online donation marketplace. I am also excited about the team and their commitment to build a marketplace that can create larger impact for donors and for nonprofits,â€ť Shanti Mohan, CEO and Founder of Letsventure said in a statement.
In the last 20 months since launch, Donatekart has assisted 450+ NGOs all over India to raise 5 Crore worth of products from 35,000+ Donors.
Pradeep Nair, Regional Director of Ford Foundation said â€śCharitable giving in India is just 0.2% of GDP compared to 2% of GDP in US. I am really excited about Donatekart and itâ€™s potential to change the giving landscape in India using their in-kind donation model.â€ť
Donatekart has worked with corporates such as HDFC Bank, Yes Bank and enabled their employees and customers give using their platform. They have won many awards like Nasscom Social Innovation Award, The New Indian Express 40 Under 40 etc., for their unique model which enables donors to directly donate products to NGOs/Charities online instead of money.
During the Kerala Floods too, more than 200 tonnes of relief material worth Rs 2 crore was raised through Donatekart in a weekâ€™s time thus helping 50,000 families.