Impact Makers’ tagline simply states: Better Business. BetterCommunity. It reflects the firm’s innovative social impact business model. The management and technology consulting firm is a benefit corporation and founding certified B Corp, inspiring a movement among entrepreneurs across the country who wish to live out their values and improve communities through their work. In many ways, Impact Makers raises the bar on “better.” Inspired by Newman’s Own, which is fully owned by a nonprofit foundation and returns all profits to charity, founder Michael Pirron’s business plan included a commitment to contribute all profits over the life of the company to its charitable community partners.
Starting with just $50, a laptop and a single contract in 2006, Michael has grown the company to $11.7 million in annual revenues and a full-time staff of 82. Year after year, Impact Makers is nationally acclaimed as best in business and “best in the world” for demonstrated social impact. This year, the firm celebrated an important milestone—$1 million in cumulative community impact, including direct financial contributions and pro bono consulting services to its charitable partners.
Current partners include Family Lifeline, Future Leaders in Project Management, Peter Paul Development Center and Rx Partnership. In an unprecedented move, Impact Makers further demonstrated leadership by gifting its entire equity ownership to The Community Foundation (70%) and Virginia Community Capital (30%). The board took this action to ensure that the company’s commitment to social good will continue far beyond the annual contributions it makes to community partners. The gift will enable TCF and VCC to support charities and invest in B Corps and other companies with a social mission far into the future.
Impact Makers has become a game changer. “You don’t have to be rich or have lots of capital to make this kind of commitment,” said Michael Pirron. “We hope our gift makes ripples to encourage others to follow.” Molly Dean Bittner, Senior Vice President for Philanthropic Services responded, “Impact Makers sets an example for Richmond-area businesses to do what companies in Silicon Valley, Austin and other entrepreneurial communities have done; that is, gift or pledge equity to a charitable fund that builds the community’s philanthropic base when there is a sale or acquisition.”
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