Al Lukies: microdonations’ time is now, and the paytech sector has big role to play

The UK’s payment technology industry has a large part to play in the fast-growing microdonations movement with the “climate right for the payments industry to be a big player in improving lives”, said Al Lukies CBE, The Prime Minister’s fintech Business Ambassador.

Lukies was speaking at an event of retail, hospitality and payment technology leaders, hosted by the fintech charity Pennies, the digital charity box on 4 September 2018.

Lukies said, “Consumers are demanding more, they are more aspiring and hopeful – and the retail industry is using the technology created by payments, and movements like Pennies’, to create a myriad of opportunities to improve the world a little.

The lightning speed growth of Pennies demonstrates a burning public desire to contribute, but the key players of paytech and retail need to embrace the moment and unlock the clearly huge potential.

Pennies is the digital upgrade of the traditional charity box, which enables customers to anonymously donate a few pence to charity at the point of sale when paying by card or mobile wallet; in-store, online and in-app. No customer data is collected or stored.

Pennies CEO, Alison Hutchinson CBE added, “Consumers are strongly embracing data-free digital giving. Pennies has seen over 50% higher donation levels than this time last year, and this momentum has enabled over 60M microdonations – and counting – in total; as fewer of us use or carry cash but still want to give a little back.

Recent research commissioned by Pennies* revealed over a third of the UK public said they leave the house “frequently” with no cash on them, yet the propensity to give remains high. 87% of the public said they give to charity, but as we edge further into a ‘less cash’ society these opportunities need to include digital. Pennies’ poll indicates a willing consumer base with 64% stating they would use Pennies’ way of digitally giving if offered.

Hutchinson continued, “Retail customer giving is a growth success story at a time we know is challenging for the sector. But we are only at the tip of the iceberg; if every card holder in the UK gave just 30p a day, £190M could be annually raised for the UK charity sector. We need more payments firms to help retailers offer multichannel microgiving as standard.

Pennies’ roster of high street brands includes Domino’s Pizza, Topps Tiles, The Entertainer, Screwfix, Hobbycraft, Zizzi and Ask restaurants, and continues to grow in every UK retail sector.

Author: Yash Hirani

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