Currys, JD Sports and Shepherds Neame pubs all shared examples of how they use Pennies to allow consumers to donate 25p or more to their chosen charities simply by clicking an option at the Point of Sale (PoS).
Many are planning online services in the future as well, such as Currys and JD Sports, as they seek to deepen their relationship, and take advantage of Pennies’ ideas to expand their capabilities. “There is a lot more we can do,” added Hutchinson, during the RTS ESG debate.
“Pennies provide a very good application programming interface (API) that is easy to implement in order to offer customers an easy seamless way to donate,” said fellow panellist, Jonathon Swaine, MD of Pubs, Shepherds Neame.
He has used Pennies at previous companies where he has worked and is a strong advocate for the way co-operating with them and involving teams in selecting charities “binds people together.”
“Pennies have enabled us to let one million plus customers per year to make a small donation,” explained Ed Connolly, Group Commercial Officer at Currys.
The Digital Poverty Alliance is one of Currys nominated charities. It supports the 2.5 million people without access to the internet and provided laptops to kids as well during the Covid-19 pandemic, so that they could still do their homework.
“This aligns with some of Curry’s many ESG goals,” said Connolly, such as:
· Eradicating digital poverty (and associated social marginalisation)
· And keeping tin in the group (another one of Curry’s ESG aims via their support for tech recycling charities).
JD Sports is using Pennies across its 800-store estate and allows its employees at each unit to decide what charity gets the low-value PoS donations, enabled by Pennies systems. They also have a JD Sports Foundation to further support their wider ESG Social programme.
“ESG matters because the younger generation are far more socially aware,” said Daniel McGrath, Group Customer Operations Manager, JD Sports, while extolling the social benefits in Pennies recipients in and of itself, alongside any bottom line benefits.
Hutchinson thanked all of the retailers using the organisation’s API and revealed that “every second in the UK there is a charitable click” via the Pennies system.
“Volumes went up 17% last year,” she said, and so far during the first quarter “this year has seen a 40% uptick in volume.”
“With the cost-of-living crisis now people cannot necessarily afford a regular charitable direct debit (DD) monthly payment anymore. But micro-donations are possible,” said Hutchinson. “People want to click and make a difference.”
About Neil Ainger
Neil is a hugely experienced freelance business and technology journalist. Further details here.