Wednesday, June 10, 2009

What Do James Taylor, the Boston Red Sox and Cold Play Have To Do With a Business Charity?

Ever wonder what would happen if the money consumers pour into the entertainment business went to charity instead? Jord Poster, founder and Chief Executive of Charity Partners, did more than just think about it-he acted on it. As a co-founder of the successful travel company, Inc, Poster started a fundraising platform where goods and services are bought and sold at the same or better price as elsewhere but with a percentage going to charity. For two years, Charity Partners has successfully generated millions of dollars for over 30 nationwide charity groups. They run Tickets-for-Charity using this model.

The concept is similar to that of an online ticket vendor like, but with a greater message to send. Charity Partners works directly with artists, different venues, management, and promoters to receive in-demand tickets to popular events. These tickets are paid for at face value as established by the venue. The ticket price is decided by this original face value with an additional pre-determined donation amount added. Both prices are explained clearly on their website,, to show customers where their money is going. These two amounts also show up separately on the customer’s credit card receipts to allow for tax deductions for the donation part of the purchase. Charity Partners earns its money again in similar ways to, by charging a small service fee to the total ticket sale.

Tickets available for purchase range from James Taylor’s show at the Mountain Winery in Saratoga, CA to Boston Red Sox games. Premium seats to the Coldplay concert in Los Angeles sold out for $212.50, with face value of $112.50 and a donation amount of $100. These tickets sold for up to $293 on and were long sold out at the venue. Charity Partners is not an auction, so customers pay the price listed on the website on a first-come first-serve basis.

Poster started this company with the intention of increasing much need financial support many charities are lacking in today’s economy. Jord Poster was quoted saying, “If you can capture even a small portion of the billions of dollars worth of inventory trapped in the hands of resellers and divert it to charity, that would be a big win.”

Charity Partners works with over 30 well-known, nation wide charities such as Autism Speaks, Habitat for Humanity, Boys & Girls Clubs of America, Feeding America, and Natural Resources Defense Council. For each event, Charity Partners works directly with artists to select a specific charity to receive the money from the donation portion of the ticket. Tickets sold from the recent James Taylor concert went to Natural Resources Defense Council, of which Taylor has been a long-time supporter. More than $78,000 has been generated so far for this non-profit organization alone.

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