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Brad Caruso (00:00):
Welcome to civic warriors brought to you by Withum on this podcast, we bring the conversation to you. Sharing, engaging stories that motivate and build consensus in the nonprofit community. This podcast is about the innovators, the leaders in the frontline of adversity, guiding lights in the nonprofit industry affecting change and through their stories, we can all join forces to become civic warriors. Hey warriors, welcome to today’s episode of with civic warriors. We have a very special guest today. This is your host, Brad Caruso, the leader of Withum’s not-for-profit practice. Our podcast today is driven to find innovative leaders in the industry and help bring their voices to the table. Recently, just in our practice, we’ve been hearing a lot and seeing a lot and getting questions constantly on cryptocurrency it’s impact on not-for-profits. And, and to be honest, the most common question we’re getting today is how do I receive cryptocurrency?
Brad Caruso (00:48):
You know, what is it, what do I do with it? Should I hold it? Should I sell it? How does that work? Are there ramifications to that? And so we’re here today with a very special guest to find out with us. Today is Alex Wilson, the Co-Founder at The Giving Block. The Giving Block makes Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency fundraising easy for nonprofits. And they’ve created a real innovative and practical solution, which we’re gonna talk about a little bit today and also with us as Izzy Tannenbaum. Izzy is the leader of our not-for-profit tax practice over here at Withum. And we’re gonna share some insights, get some cool information out there, and hopefully we learn a little bit more about this, uh, wacky thing they call cryptocurrency. So welcome to the show, Alex, we appreciate having you here.
Alex Wilson (01:22):
Thanks for having me guys looking forward to the conversation.
Brad Caruso (01:25):
Awesome. So, so Alex, as, as one of the co-founders of The Giving Block, you know, what, what kind of drove you to start it? How did the idea come about and why did you see a need in this world?
Alex Wilson (01:34):
So my background before starting The Giving Block with Pat, my Co-Founder was kind of your more traditional management consulting path. It all was really interested in emerging technology and, you know, back in 2016 and especially going into 2017, just started to learn more and more about cryptocurrency, mostly on the nights and weekends at first. But by, by the end of 2017 was just like obsessed with crypto and was like, I wanna spend all of my time thinking about, and working on crypto. I’ve gotta find a way to work in this industry basically. And one of my college friends, Pat Duffy, at the time, um, we were both living in DC, still hung out in the same social circles, stuff like that. After college he was actually working in a nonprofit at the time and I dragged him into taking at least a look at crypto and eventually investing in trading in crypto, kind of kicking and screaming at first, he was kind of the guy talking people out of crypto originally actually until, you know, he eventually came around, um, and was excited about crypto, just like I was.
Alex Wilson (02:33):
And, you know, you know, over some drinks one night he had the idea of crypto is pretty cool. Nonprofit work is so important and so impactful, but they tend to be a bit behind sometimes when it comes to technology, like this is going to be really, really important for nonprofits. And it’s not just gonna be about accepting donations. This is really gonna be like a donor demographic because of how, like, there’s like a cultural phenomenon to it too, right? It’s not just adding a donate crypto button your site, but there’s like a true community around this new technology. And basically we saw some things that really motivated us to, to start this business. And one was, are you guys familiar with the pineapple fund? Yeah. So the pineapple fund, it’s a crazy story, but it happened at the end of 2017 and a person or a group of people, not sure they’re still totally anonymous, posted on Reddit and said, I made a ton of money investing in Bitcoin.
Alex Wilson (03:24):
And now I want to give that all away to nonprofits like, hey, nonprofits kind of like basically apply below in the comments essentially. And you can imagine how people were pretty skeptical of that, right? But they came through and they donated $56 million worth of it to 60 different nonprofits at the end of 2017 and going into early 2018. And for a lot of those nonprofits, this was a totally new concept to them. Right. And even if they did figure out a way to accept the donation, they had a lot of trouble with things like liquidating it, where to store it, how to convert it. Like we, we heard all these horror stories and realized there wasn’t a good solution for nonprofits in the space, right? Like anyone can set up a payment processor, but that’s a bit different than what a nonprofit is looking for when they want to fundraise donations. So in 2018, we started talking to all these nonprofits that got pineapple fund donations and kind of learning what they were looking for in a solution and built it around that. And in 2018, you know, formally started the company. But as you can imagine, first couple years, pretty slow in terms of traction. Most of those pineapple funds clients though, or recipients became clients, but it was, it was quite the uphill battle, convincing nonprofits to, to take a look at crypto in the early days.
Brad Caruso (04:33):
Totally. And I mean, even today, if there’s so much more buzz about it, I think it’s, you know, it’s a little bit more mainstream. There’s probably a little, you know, a few more solutions that help people understand it better. I bought my Bitcoin for dummies book not that long ago and tried to really understand it and, and get a feel for what was going on there. But yeah, that that’s really cool about the pineapple fund. I’m gonna have to check that out a little more and I love that just concept and, and, and that’s how a lot of ideas out here that we see start it’s someone who is wealthy. It’s someone who is like, I wanna have my money do good for me. And they gave away 56 million and they probably had a lot more than 56 million over and above that.
Alex Wilson (05:04):
Yeah. Yeah. And then we’ll probably see like, uh, you know, an equivalent of the pineapple fund again one day on Reddit. Right.
Brad Caruso (05:10):
I hope so. Yeah. Yeah, no, I really hope so. And you know, you’ll see one day there’s gonna be a, not-for-profit blockchain and all these investors are gonna come together on this platform to then it’s gonna be their own. They’re gonna create the, not-for-profit token at some point.
Izzy Tannenbaum (05:21):
That’s a great point it’s pretty much just the tip of the iceberg really. And 2017 was really the tip of the tip of the iceberg. So that’s great. But I think just in terms of how this is exploding, it’s probably already exploding in terms of your experience and not-for-profits coming and approaching and looking for solutions for this type of stuff. I know, even anecdotally we’re seeing that. So I can only imagine, but I think again, it’s only the beginning and I think over the next couple years, we’re gonna see a massive expansion of that. And to your point earlier, I think it is a new demographic and crypto is really what’s driving this new generation of wealth in many instances and people in terms of even tax planning or looking at what to do with their crypto, a good chunk of them will wanna fund different philanthropic organizations and need that mechanism to do that. So I think that’s only gonna continue to grow and it’s just great that there’s gonna be a company like yours that can facilitate that.
Alex Wilson (06:14):
Yeah. And to your point, when we talked to nonprofits about this, right, they’re already thinking about how do we tap into the next generation of wealth, right? So many of their donors are on the older side and, and still mailing them checks and things like that, right? They’re like, how do we connect with people in their twenties and their thirties, you know, basically millennials and gen Zs. And they don’t necessarily always connect the dots that wow, so many of them own crypto and as more and more of that wealth gets shifted from boomers and other older generations to millennials and gen Zs. So much of that money is going to go into crypto. Most, um, I can’t remember the exact number, I think it was a CNBC article, but some high percentage of millennial millionaires have a huge portion of their wealth stored in crypto. That’s just where they put their money. They prefer crypto to stocks or other types of more traditional investments. That’s just where the money’s gonna go. And that’s gonna be for the foreseeable future, their most tax efficient way to support nonprofits. So it’s been exciting for the nonprofits to start building these relationships with younger donors and be able to look forward to, you know, will have a relationship with this donor for 50 years instead of getting connected with them when they retired or something like that.
Brad Caruso (07:20):
It’s a long term game. Definitely. And there’s gonna be a lot of innovation in this space. Right now, you hear a lot of buzz about it, or at least I hear a lot of buzz about, you know, different tokens, starting different ideas. And a lot of people are just getting involved to get involved. They don’t even know what they’re buying. I know with myself, I’m, you know, I’m sitting there buying Bitcoin. I’m like, this seems like a scam to me, it seems like a place to just illegally park money.
Alex Wilson (07:42):
You definitely have to be careful. And we, we kind of play that advisory role with the nonprofits we work with too, to help them vet opportunities or partnerships, things like that. Right. And we, we talk to the nonprofits, it’s very much like a crawl, walk, run type of scenario, right? Like don’t try to do everything all at once start with the basics, with education and get set up to accept crypto, then you start fundraising it. And then you can start looking at these other use cases that are a bit more complex, but like, let’s not get ahead of ourselves. Like we have nonprofits all the time who come to us and they’re not even accepting crypto yet. And they wanna start their own token. And its like, all right, baby steps here, right. First like slow down a little bit. So we actually have to talk them out of some of these ideas sometimes because they get too excited about crypto and wanna take it almost too far in the, in the short term.
Brad Caruso (08:27):
Yeah. So Alex, can you share a little bit maybe, uh, just on that topic, maybe some basic education on how do you personally view cryptocurrency itself? Like how do you define a cryptocurrency and what are some of the things that you’re seeing out there in that market? I mean, obviously there’s a big uptick, but from your perspective, maybe provide a little education on the crypto side itself. Like people hear Bitcoin, they know what Bitcoin is, but Bitcoin is just one example of a cryptocurrency. So how, how do you view that? Just if someone says, what is cryptocurrency, how, how do you respond to that?
Alex Wilson (08:56):
Well, I actually think for the sake of kind of responding to it and explaining it, Bitcoin is the best example to use, but for everyone who’s listening, like for context, right, Bitcoin was the first cryptocurrency and now there’s thousands of cryptocurrencies out there, but a lot of them just aren’t gonna work out just like most startups and businesses don’t work out. There’s a lot of experimentation going on in the space. A lot of learning, a lot of really interesting things going on. And I think you’re gonna see a lot of them not work out, but you’re gonna see a lot of really cool things get developed over the next couple of years. And then for now Bitcoin is essentially still king and driving, you know, among Bitcoin and Ethereum. That’s where we’re seeing the majority of donation volume still. Of course, since they have pretty dominant market positions, but when it comes to actually thinking about all right, what is Bitcoin, just for the sake of an example, I would say the things that are most important for people to understand.
Alex Wilson (09:45):
And it’s kind of in the context of like, why is Bitcoin popular, right? Like what are the features or what’s the functionality that’s getting people excited about it. And I would say the biggest one is the realization that there’s only ever gonna be 21 million Bitcoin that’s so often the aha moment that there is this fixed supply. And I think especially relevant right over these last two years, as people have started to think Bitcoin is like a digital gold, uh, store value or like inflation hedge, like that sort of thinking and people are thinking like, well, the government’s spending a lot of money. They’re printing a lot of money in essence too. Right. And starting to get more and more worried about inflation. So you’re seeing people buy Bitcoin instead of gold, for example. So that’s an easy way to kind of compare it to something that people might be more comfortable with, like a digital gold.
Alex Wilson (10:29):
And then the other piece that I think is really appealing to people is, you know, some people see this as a, a downside. Some people see it as an upside. I, I certainly see it as a positive thing, but that it’s not backed by any individual country or company that it’s truly decentralized and essentially owned by the, the user base in the community. Like anyone can use it. There’s no, you know, borders to it, which has made it popular of course, for things like remittances and, and sending money internationally and you know, you don’t have to wait for the bank to open at 8:00 AM on Monday to make a, a wire transfer, right. It’s 24/7. So I guess all that to say, think about this as like a, a digital cash that anyone can use at any time to send money around the world. Essentially.
Brad Caruso (11:16):
That’s a great primer into it. And just understanding, you know, the, the, my Bitcoin for dummies book that I’ve been reading, it talks a lot about the, this concept of how does the banking system work now it’s a centralized system, it’s a central banking system versus something that’s on a blockchain, which is a decentralized, no one owns it, no one regulates it. It has its own rules built into it. I think that’s the part where I get lost a little bit is how do the rules work? But certainly I, I think that context is good of people just understanding that it’s an alternative asset or it’s another type of asset class. It has utility in a different way. Like you don’t have to worry about these crazy wire fees when you’re going through a bank and wait two days until someone can get it. And then they have to go to a Western Union to accept their money.
Brad Caruso (11:55):
If you have a smartphone, I can transfer Bitcoin from me to you. It seems like that’s one of the main benefits of it is that less cost structure and less red tape to go through to be able to get an asset from A to B or, or currency from A to B. So maybe Alex, maybe talk a little bit about what are some of the challenges and opportunities you’re seeing that not-for-profits are approaching you with, you’re probably getting questions left and right. You’re, you’re probably just on the phone constantly with issues, things that are coming up, what are some of the common things that are coming up to you and how are you then helping not-for-profits solve that, whether it’s through your platform or just through your knowledge in this space. Cause obviously you’re very knowledgeable in the space.
Alex Wilson (12:31):
Yeah. I mean, I guess lucky for us in a sense that we’ve been doing this for longer than pretty much anyone else, even though that’s only been since 2018, right? So we’ve answered more questions on all things crypto and nonprofits than anyone else in the world, probably. So we’ve kind of heard it all at this point. And the kinds of questions we get certainly are changing over time, like early days, a lot more hesitation, a lot more skepticism against crypto in general. And I think now it’s more, is crypto a priority for us not is crypto a legitimate thing? I think that’s how the conversation is shifting. And I think part of that too, is we work with about 1500 nonprofits now or getting close to that. And that sounds like a lot to me at least. But you know, in the grand scheme of things, it’s not that many nonprofits accepting crypto yet.
Alex Wilson (13:18):
So it’s not like everyone’s doing it yet. So there’s still some hesitation since it’s not totally mainstream yet, but we’ve gotten to the point where we’ve got a lot of the more like blue chip nonprofit names on board, like a St Jude or a Save the Children, a United Way, American Cancer, which I think has built a lot of trust and kind confidence with other nonprofits that look up to them. So we’ve gotten over some of those hurdles, but some of it is simply like we’re worried that we don’t have anyone in our audience that’s gonna have crypto and wanna donate crypto. They’re worried their donor base is too old and things like that. That’s probably one of the most common concerns or just no one’s ever reached out offering it. And you know, actually that a case for most of our clients, it’s almost all net new donors and net new dollars that are coming in from crypto, because most of these crypto donors, if they don’t see crypto on your website, they’re probably not gonna email you and try to convince you to accept crypto.
Alex Wilson (14:09):
They’re gonna go somewhere that already accepts it for a lot of these people. When we talk to donors, they’re actually only donating crypto. That’s the only way they give because that’s where all their appreciated assets are. So they don’t ever plan to make a credit card donation or write a check or bank transfer, whatever, this is their only way to give. And the only way they plan on giving at least for now. So they’re really just missing out if they’re not even on the menu of what donors are looking at for options for. So they’re usually pleasantly surprised by how many donations they get once they start accepting crypto, because then they’re actually on the menu.
Izzy Tannenbaum (14:43):
It’s funny, cuz this reminds me so much of when the internet first came out and organizations were having the same struggle with, should I have a website? Do I need a website? Do I need to be able to accept donations through a website? And then you started seeing the bigger ones do that and adopt that and how well they were doing with it. And then suddenly it kind of had a trickle down effect where everyone started doing that. So I think you’re seeing the same thing here. And I think to that point, like I said earlier, that is gonna be this next big boom in a sense, it’s gonna be the crypto boom. And that’s what’s creating the most wealth now. And I think, you know, just the application of it, it’s funny cuz I think where a lot of people get lost as you start with what is cryptocurrency and suddenly you end up in the metaverse.
Izzy Tannenbaum (15:22):
So you know, you kind of can spiral out pretty far with this stuff, but sticking to keeping it simple, which is, I think is a great way to do it for nonprofit organizations because ultimately that’s what they’re looking for. That’s what they’re getting donations. But if that’s where the wealth is being created, then people are gonna look to do that even at a minimum, as a tax saving strategy. So I don’t have to pay gains on this and I can donate it to a great cause and get a tax deduction. So again, I think it’s just fantastic.
Brad Caruso (15:48):
Alex. So from your perspective, what are some of the things that you’re, that you’re helping with right now? You threw some concepts out there about, Hey, if you don’t have a crypto button on your website or you can’t accept it, you know, how do you go about that? I imagine that certainly in the wheelhouse of how you’ve been helping, can you maybe talk a little bit about why someone would go to a giving block as opposed to try to manage it on their own pros and cons of doing it on your own versus why you would go to a giving block?
Alex Wilson (16:11):
Really this all goes back to that earlier point of like this is a donor demographic, not just a donation method. So accepting crypto is only the first step, but in our opinion, you’re kind of wasting your time. If all you’re doing is putting up a way to accept crypto and then walking away. And what we’ve done is really built the most comprehensive support model around this. And when I talk about support, I mean everything from onboarding and, and getting you set up to accept crypto in a compliant way so you don’t make any mistakes along the way. We’ve seen all sorts of horror stories of people accidentally setting up personal accounts instead of nonprofit certified accounts and things like that. And then once you’re set up, how do you actually start fundraising? And we’ve got an entire client success team dedicated to just working with our clients on a daily basis on, okay, this is how you become good at crypto fundraising basically, right?
Alex Wilson (16:58):
These are the dos and don’ts we put together marketing toolkits for campaigns. We run like crypto giving Tuesday. We’ve got NF Tuesday now, even crypto giving pledge all these different initiatives, uh, to basically create a culture of giving in the crypto community and get in front of crypto owners and essentially funnel them to our crowdfunding platform. We have all the nonprofits we work with. So we’re the first ones to really bring these two communities together that wouldn’t typically connect with one another very often. And we’ve seen a lot of nonprofits kind of try to go at this on their own. Even some of our largest clients like Save the Children, United Way, American Cancer. They all tried to go kind of the more payment processing route and stopping there. And they didn’t see many results at all. And they switched to us and had huge fundraising outcomes now raising millions even in their first year of switching to us. So it does make a huge difference. And I would say, think about it like this nonprofits for credit card donations, they’re not building their own credit card processor. They’re going to a vendor, like let’s say a Blackboard classy or something like that, to help them with the fundraising component of this.
Brad Caruso (18:04):
Yeah you have to, you know, nonprofits need to focus on doing nonprofit things like mission related act, not how do I handle this?
Alex Wilson (18:10):
Exactly. They outsource it to us so they can focus their day to day on their mission. They shouldn’t have to become experts on all aspects of crypto just to be able to accept donations.
Brad Caruso (18:19):
See you mentioned something interesting there, and Izzy knows a lot more about this. Were you referring to NFTs when you said, uh, kind of getting, you know, people, not only cryptocurrency, but you’re, you know, you also have other digital asset class of NFTs. Is that something that you’re handling? Is that something you’re seeing activity in? I know nothing about NFTs. It seems like baseball card trading to me, you know, my kids playing with Pokemon cards right now and I’m like, that looks like an NFT.
Alex Wilson (18:43):
So yeah, it’s a good way of actually describing NFTs for people who don’t know about them. That’s how I always describe NFTs. And it stands for non fungible tokens. And you can really think about these like digital collectibles, like a digital version of a baseball card or a Pokemon card that people assign value to and, and want to collect and own. That’s essentially what NFTs are. They can be art, they can be music, they can be all sorts of different things, but ultimately it’s a, it’s a digital item that people assign value you to, right? And they’re being traded and bought and sold 24/7. And we’ve seen a growth in what we’ve been trying to foster and call NFT philanthropy as sort of a subset of crypto philanthropy. And last year alone, we raised over $12 million just related to NFTs. And what’s happening is of course at as NFTs.
Alex Wilson (19:31):
Boom, just like when crypto booms people are making a lot of money and now they have a lot of taxes they owe and because most NFTs are being sold for crypto. It makes sense that if they want to donate after selling NFT, they’re gonna donate the crypto and use that as a way to offset. And in some cases we’re even seeing more unique use cases where people are selling an NFT and sort of more programmatically automatically having, let’s say 20% of the auction proceeds, donated to the nonprofits crypto wallet, which is really cool to really build it in to the selling price where it’s totally automated and just goes directly to them afterwards.
Izzy Tannenbaum (20:09):
Yeah. And I, I think that as that develops as a technology, you’re gonna see so many applications of it where things can be left to charity almost now what people use, you know, they set up a trust. It’s almost completely replaceable by a smart contract that ultimately pops a piece over to charity. So it’s really exciting just to see as this stuff unfolds. And it’s great that a company like yours is actually being so forward thinking because I feel like for so many organizations they’d otherwise be, you know, picking up on this a few years from now at the tail end when it, the market was really so saturated. So to have a place to go is just gonna be really helpful in helping get all this wealth over to the charitable organizations.
Alex Wilson (20:47):
And one thing we talk a lot about with nonprofits too, is there’s a huge first mover advantage. It’s so much less competitive for them to fundraise crypto than pretty much anything else. There’s one point what 4 or 5 million nonprofits in the country. And, you know, a couple thousand of them are accepting crypto and there’s 300 million crypto users. I mean, that’s a lot of crypto users for every nonprofit accepting crypto. You have the opportunity to start essentially the equivalent of carving out market share with those donors really early on. Before it’s something that everyone’s doing.
Brad Caruso (21:20):
Yeah. You took the words outta my mouth, but there’s about 1.6 million registered nonprofits in the US. And you mentioned before I having about 1500 on the platform, there’s a big market out there. And you know, I have a couple hundred clients, he has a couple hundred clients and there’s not a meeting I don’t go to that I’m like, are you guys thinking about crypto? They’re like, we were gonna ask you about what does this even mean? How do we do it? And most of the time they’re like, should we accept? You know, someone wants to give us one Bitcoin, should we accept it? I’m like, absolutely not. I mean, yes, you want the money. And, but I think you should think about a strategy behind it, not just opening a wallet and then just accepting it. I feel like there’s a lot more considerations that organizations need to factor in. Izzy I guess, from your perspective, what are some of the things you’re seeing as far as things that nonprofit should be thinking about when someone approaches them to donate? What, what do you see?
Izzy Tannenbaum (22:04):
Yeah, I think, look like we like to say, there’s almost no such thing as a bad donation, right? This is money. This is value coming into the organization. That’s gonna go toward their programmatic needs, which is great. But at the same time organizations, I think too often are being faced with this and then scrambling to kind of catch up and get everything in place and accept this and really understand the ramifications of it. I think by being forward thinking and actually educating themselves on this and understanding the consequences of accepting it, the pitfalls pros and cons, all that type of stuff. I think that’s really where organizations need to kind of, um, step it up a little bit because I think based on all this discussion, you could just look at the numbers and you see we’re at the point already where this is essentially mainstream.
Izzy Tannenbaum (22:46):
This is how money’s gonna be transmitted from one person to another. And if organizations can’t do this, they’re just gonna be left behind. I think the key thing at least initially is to make sure you have the proper policies and procedures in place. People are not gonna know what to do. And in terms of how it accept this, if you don’t codify it, have a reference document where you say, okay, what’s our gift acceptance policy let’s update that for cryptocurrency. Do we accept it? What do we do with it? When we get it, all those types of things, as long as an organization puts the right foundation in place and allows themselves to work with an organization such as with Alex, I think that they’re gonna really set themselves up and be an early adopter in the most fascinating thing that we’ve seen in so long that’s really gonna be again, that’s the new way currency is gonna be transferred. So organizations are either gonna adapt to it or get left behind. And I think now is a perfect time to really get these things in place because we’re just gonna keep seeing this growth.
Brad Caruso (23:43):
Alex, what is the most interesting or comical digital asset that someone has tried to donate to a nonprofit? I feel like there has to be an interesting story.
Alex Wilson (23:51):
I’m trying to think of exact names, but there was always, you know, these people that approach the nonprofits with this, what seems like a made up project, right? And they’re like, no, trust us, this is gonna be you the next Bitcoin. Right? And it’s like, well, no, that’s what everyone says. And we, we really do have to be careful and, and we help our nonprofits get that, because there are people out there that try to take advantage of nonprofits, unfortunately, and they try to convince the nonprofit to accept a donation in some BS project, right. For the sake of gaining the legitimacy for people to invest and buy it and things like that. So that that’s certainly something to watch out for. We always tell our clients, like if you have someone reach out asking about something like this, please let us know. So we can take a look for you and make sure they’re not up to something bad.
Izzy Tannenbaum (24:40):
That’s a really big value add on your part. Because like you said, there are so many out there and constantly you keep hearing of new tokens. So for organizations to have to vet all these different types of tokens, that would be a big undertaking. So to have a resource such as you, who can help them with that.
Brad Caruso (24:55):
No doubt. So Alex, if someone wanted to find out more about you or they heard this conversation said, wow, that’s really interesting. Or I’m getting approached, what’s the right action step to either use your platform or get more inform, how can someone do that?
Alex Wilson (25:07):
So anyone listening can go to thegivingblock.com, you’ll see a button to be able to book a demo. Um, and if you book a demo, you’ll be able to meet with someone on our team who can kind of take you through some of the things we talked about in more detail, show you how the platform works. And if you do decide to move forward, you know, get that process started, but it’s very educational in nature.
Brad Caruso (25:28):
Yeah. And a key word there, which is education from our perspective, you know, with the client base, I just tell people, just educate yourself and use different resources to do that education. You’re not gonna learn this overnight. Especially the younger generation probably lives with it. And by younger generation, I’m not putting myself in that class, even though I’m probably close, you know, I didn’t grow up with cryptocurrency. I’m starting to get into it now just as I’m learning more about it. But you know, I put a lot of research and education into that. And I think just thinking about it, understanding what is your strategy with it as with anything, right? If you’re gonna have an investment portfolio at your not-for-profit, what do you do? You create an investment policy, you come up with a strategy, you determine how you’re gonna allocate your resources. And so I, I think it, it’s no different, it’s a similar methodology of learning.
Brad Caruso (26:09):
And before you dive in, you all wanna make sure to fully understand. And, you know, I appreciate that there’s organizations like the one you started that really just provides that education provides that resource. And I think you said it best, it’s not a processor. Your value proposition is not yeah, we process these donations. It’s everything that goes along with it. It’s the education component. It’s the ease of use. It’s the guidance, it’s the marketing that can help you. Yes. You’re gonna get one, but how do you get many, you know, how do you go from one to many? And I think that’s a, uh, what I’ve learned today or at least what I’ve heard, uh, which I think is just very valuable in understanding is that there are resources like yours that are out there helping clients and helping nonprofits in the world, just be more successful and come up with that strategy and come up with that. Why of, of why you’re gonna do it.
Alex Wilson (26:53):
And it might not be right for everyone’s organization and we’ll help make that decision for nonprofits. We actually turn down nonprofits. If we don’t think it’s a good fit, um, there are some nonprofits that it probably just isn’t a good fit for, or not the right time. And some of that could be either based on their size or maybe they don’t have a good online presence and they should be prioritizing, you know, better website first or, or getting their social media marketing in order. Not everyone has to start accepting crypto right now. And our team really prides itself on doing an evaluation, right? When we talk to a nonprofit and making sure this really is a right fit because we’re not in it just to try to make a, a quick buck and sign up as many nonprofits as possible, we really wanna make sure we’re onboarding the right type of nonprofit that fits the profile that we know is going to be successful with this.
Brad Caruso (27:39):
You know, Alex, thank you so much for spending the time with us sharing your message. Any, any final thoughts for us?
Alex Wilson (27:44):
I guess the last thing would just be, if you work with us or, or someone like us, it’s probably not as scary as you might think it is to get started. We and others have made it a whole lot easier to get started in a pretty short amount of time. You don’t have to actually know too much about crypto to get started. You just have to be willing to start learning and, and talking to people, right. So, you know, even if you’re not ready, just take a look at maybe even our blog or sign up for the newsletter or follow us on social media and just start seeing what other nonprofits are doing to get a feel for how it works, essentially. And then, you know, when you’re ready, you can always think about booking a demo or something like that.
Brad Caruso (28:18):
Yeah, definitely a lot of resources appreciate those comments. We value your time and help our clients understand it a little bit better. Keep up the great work. Thank you so much for being here today. It was wonderful. And Izzy, thanks for your comments. And, and, uh, looking forward to hearing more about what’s happening in the crypto world. Maybe I’ll get into NFT soon. I don’t know. Time will tell.
Alex Wilson (28:35):
Well, thanks for having me on.