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Handprint

Impact as a Service

Singapore
Market: Internet and IT, Information and media, Other, Blockchain
Stage of the project: Operating business

Date of last change: 26.04.2021
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Idea

Handprint is on a mission to integrate positive impact into every company's North Star Metric. We curate high quality impact projects, and integrate contributions to these projects into clients' KPIs. We have built tools to make eCarts green in a few clicks and are expanding our portfolio to in-app integrations (ride-hailing), websites & EDMs (unique visitors / readers), streaming (hours viewed), and impressions (ads in digital marketing). All these activities can become climate positive and regenerative in just a few clicks.

Current Status

Numerous Shopify clients
We onboarded SaladStop! in Singapore and have developed a bespoke integration with their online platform and app to empower their customers to become climate positive.
SMU and INSEAD professors are involved in field experiments to test the best messages that motivate customers to contribute to regeneration. This collaboration involves deployment of Handprint APIs to track and display impact.
Ongoing conversations with companies across industries (hotels, banks, fashion brands, alcohol, ride-hailing, financial services, data servies,...) to use Handprint as an entry point into the regenerative economy [all under NDA].
Onboarded impact partners that are active in reforestation (Indonesia and Myanmar), ocean clean-ups (Indonesia), potable water for disadvantaged communities (Cambodia), sustainability education (India), coral reef reconstruction (Malaysia) and in conversations with many more in mainly Latin-America, USA, and Southreast Asia.
Partnership with AtlasGo to work on employee engagement projects.
Partnerships with Les Causantes (France) and LifeGate (Italy) to resell Handprint’s technology

Market

Market sizing for platforms that are at the vanguard of a new type of economy is more art than science. Right now, our scalable market size is 1.5 million WooCommerce merchants, 1 million Shopify merchants, and 250,000 Magento merchants.
Assuming we can in 2 years convince 1/1,000 to join Handprint that will give us 2,750 clients that will contribute anywhere between 100 to 100,000 USD per month for regeneration. For simplicity we will assume a steady state equilibrium where after 3 years the number of clients leaving equals the number of new clients. If we assume a left-skewed distributed mean of 700 USD / month, that gives us just over 23 million in impact per year.

That's a start. But we think bigger. Our future plans are not public information but can be disclosed to interested investors.

UNPRI predicted that the market for nature-based solutions (focusing specifically on carbon sequestration) would be worth 800 billion per year by 2050. If we add other NBS and SDGs the market will easily supersede 2 trillion. We want to have 5% of that market. That's 40 billion per year.

Problem or Opportunity

Consumers increasingly demand that companies tackle sustainability issues. Companies that heed that message grow three times faster than their competitors, a trend that has gained steam during the pandemic. Yet, becoming sustainable is complex and daunting as companies do not know where to start, who to trust, or how to make the biggest impact under budget constraints. With businesses overwhelmed, their sustainability initiatives are ultimately rendered haphazard, directionless, and disconnected fr om their business and marketing strategies, and often lack a clear view of the true measurable impact of their activities.
A primary focus of corporate sustainability is climate change, which puts reducing a company’s carbon footprint through technological innovation and efficiency gains high on the agenda. In addition, voluntary carbon markets enable companies to neutralize remaining emissions through the purchase of carbon credits. But those markets have shown numerous limitations:
On the supply side, due to prohibitive entry barrier costs (pre-funding and verification costs), small-scale nature-based solutions (like reforestation projects) are de factor excluded.
On the demand side, small and medium companies lack the knowledge and resources to engage in this market
The market structure itself is opaque and inefficient. Intermediaries and expensive consultants syphon off up to 80% of money spent on carbon credits which creates a massive impact deficit.
For more details on this topic, please see a report commissioned by UN, SDFA, and DBS Bank in Singapore that we wrote (these have been discussed in some detail in our work on sustainable digital finance (https://www.dbs.com/iwov-resources/images/sustainability/reports/Sustainable%20Digital%20Finance%20in%20Asia_FINAL_22.pdf).
Given the current urgency of tackling climate change and the increasing attention of consumers and governments globally, an enterprise-ready platform for businesses to decarbonize their business model is needed. Such a platform should be open, transparent, cost-efficient, trustworthy, and easy to integrate into a company’s processes. That’s wh ere Handprint comes in. While a footprint captures all the negative impact you have on the world, Handprint is the sum of all the positive impact you choose to make.
In short, we need to empower every single company on earth to become part of a restorative and regenerative economy. Handprint is a big step in this direction as we simplify sustainability.

Solution (product or service)

Handprint delivers Impact as a Service. As a double-sided market, Handprint connects companies to causes they and their consumers care about. Once a project is selected, companies can make each sale greener through plug-ins (e.g. for e-commerce platforms like Shopify and WooCommerce) that communicate the company’s sustainability pledge and action at a critical juncture of the consumer journey, the moment of payment. In e-commerce, about 80% of ‘purchases’ are abandoned in the cart. While there are competitors in the impact integration space, we are unique in the following dimensions:
Direct impact. We curate highly effective impact projects around the world, digitize their service offerings, and make those services available to our clients. This direct connection between company and cause leads to significant cost reductions and hence an impact premium.
SDG scope: Most competitors resell off the shelf accredited carbon sequestration projects at a premium. Our projects range from forestry, to coral reef reconstruction, breeding programs, plastic removal, to targeted education and disaster relief. This facilitates strategic alignment with companies’ purpose and identity.
Socio-technological trust: Handprint runs on a smart contract architecture that makes transactions cost-efficient, traceable, and immutable. Remote sensing, machine learning, and simple interfaces are used to track, monitor, and report impact performance in a low-cost, high fidelity manner. All of this is fully automated. We absorb the complexity so that our clients can focus on their business.
Credible communication. Our clients have access to impact stories (photos, videos, tweets) that are directly uploaded by project managers through our “Impacter app”. We also create APIs for our impact metrics (e.g. trees planted, projected carbon absorption, biodiversity support, economic value, gender equality...) enabling clients to integrate those into their digital assets. The Handprint logo on the data visualization ensures stakeholders that the underlying data are truthful.
Amazingly, most features are free!

Competitors

Very broadly speaking, we are in the space of Corporate Social Responsibility in which loads of large listed companies are active. For those companies, we can be a great partner. We have a growing list of now 42 competitors that we follow (can be obtained upon request). Given the scope of our activities, we see our competitors in the following areas

- Impact integration: Many organizations have built plug-ins for various e-commerce platforms. Most of them are enabling companies or individuals to offset carbon emissions associated with the transportation of the product. They typically rely on off the shelf carbon credit projects, we create direct impact. They assume companies and individuals only care about carbon, we give choice. They presume companies want to go carbon neutral, we empower clients to go further. The most salient ones here are the ones that are directly linked to big e-com platforms or payment provides. Stripe, Shopify, and PayPal for instance have all developed such tools. We are in conversations with each of them.
- Consumer apps like Nori, Project Wren, treedom.it, and Klima: Some have bespoke projects while others use off the shelf projects. They sell at an impact premium, we do not. The onus is entirely on the individual, we link with consumer behavior and empower companies and individuals to make impact together
- Technology companies like Pachama and Kumi Analytics: advanced machine learning for forest state change. We work with Kumi and are developing technologies that go beyond forestry
- Impact platforms like Carbonclick and Cloverly: Similar to us but exclusively focused on carbon.
- NGOs like EcoMatcher and WeForest: Possible partners of Handprint that currently approach clients directly but could offer added value through our intermediation.

You can find our competitor analysis here: https://bit.ly/3tew0mh (please do not share beyond this competition).

Advantages or differentiators

Handprint has created a flexible impact engine that integrates with different types of KPIs. Happy to discuss with investors in detail how this works and what the future holds.

Finance

Handprint does not make money on positive impact. We are FREE for people, and FREEMIUM for corporates. Corporate clients can integrate our widget or APIs and pay a monthly subscription fee for this service as well as a surplus that is dependent on their traffic (API calls and financial transactions).

Our key costs are development and salaries for the CEO, Chief Impact Officer, CTO, and Head of Marketing. Next, we have a marketing budget and are in conversations with AWS to finalize our cloud costs.
Our key metrics are the SAAS Magic number (below 4.7x), Bessemer's CAC ratio (max 4.6x) and the CLV / CAC (max 5.1x). These are estimates based on our cash plan.

Business model

Handprint is a B2B2C Saas platform that delivers Interactive Impact as a Service. We connect high-quality NGO projects to companies who want to support specific good causes (aligned with their purpose) but lack the internal resources and time to orchestrate these processes themselves. We take the guesswork out of CSR activities and optimize their impact by curating high impact, high quality, and low cost projects globally.
We build a sales funnel through direct and inbound marketing and have built a low-touch, highly scalable platform.
We follow a product-led growth strategy by speaking to both employees and companies and help them achieve their sustainability goals together.
Our key touch points are the e-commerce widgets we are creating and the API integrations (powered by HandprintTM) we enable.
Our key metrics are cost of client acquisition, cost of customer acquisition, total positive impact enabled, monthly app downloads, number of e-commerce transactions contributing to positive impact and number of customer amplifications

Money will be spent on

We will expand our development team so that we can scale the variety of use cases we are developing with our clients faster. Under the "customer segments" section we briefly introduced a variety of use cases that we are exploring. All of those rely on the integration of Handprint's impact engine into different business transactions or KPIs. With Singaporean Zig (Comfort Delgro), we are discussing how to make ride-hailing positive for the planet. We are launching a collaboration with Mutt Motorcycles to become the first mangrove planting bikes in the world. Our discussions with Johnnie Walker look at developing QR codes that are integrated in the packaging of their iconic bottles and lead to a digital consumer experience around impact, giving the customer power of purse. We are exploring a similar idea with a large hotel chain that is interested in integrating QR codes into their rooms, empowering guests to allocate a daily reward budget to impact projects the hotel supports. This personalizes the sustainability efforts of the company.
With a large French bank, we are starting to plant mangroves and are exploring opportunities to link such planting to employee engagement and to "cloud cleanups".

Next, we are working on the integration of Handprint into digital marketing by connecting our Impact Engine to impression counters so that digital ad campaigns can become genuinely good.

All of these use cases require additional development and have a high potential for appealing to multiple clients. Together with the organizers, we would like to prioritize which of these use cases could be used by Battle Startup Network as well so that we can develop something that truly leads makes this Network regenerative. We have proposed something similar to Cisco: Let's make WebEx meetings plant corals. For this network, let's connect every new startup to planting a tree, and let's celebrate your organization for doing that.

Concretely, 70% development, design, and user research, 20% sales, 10% marketing

Offer for investor

Negotiable.
We are willing to sell up to 20% of our business in the next 8 months. Our first "round" was raised by SAFE note.

Team or Management

Risks

There are millions of risks. That's presumably true for every entrepreneurial venture. The key ones we are actively mitigating include the following:

Payment services: Handprint will at some point have to either outsource all payment services to a third party or become licensed under Singapore's new Payments Services law that went into effect in Jan 2021. Getting licensed is a long and arduous process, which may distract us from our core activities.

Impact non-performance: Despite careful curation of impact partners and projects, there is a risk that some impact projects will fail due to human error or force majeure. We are setting up an impact board to assess our impact partner onboarding and are working with universities to advise on how to monitor impacts and how to make diverse impacts more comparable. We are also talking with parametric insurance company Arbol to insure against this risk

Impact recognition of various governments needs to be negotiated on a case by case basis until a framework is in place.

Incubation/Acceleration programs accomplishment

Semi finalist in the Cisco Global Problem Solver Challenge. Submitting to become a finalist today!

Won the competition and other awards

Our previous start-up Global Mangrove Trust was chosen as the most innovative climate startup in the world by the Global Policy Initiative India Chapter.
We have also been a finalist in the Singapore Fintech Festival.
This recognition matters because our technology stack is in part inherited from this previous venture.

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Idea
Current Status
Market
Problem or Opportunity
Solution (product or service)
Competitors
Advantages or differentiators
Finance
Invested in previous rounds, $
Business model
Money will be spent on
Offer for investor
Team or Management
Mentors & Advisors
Lead investor
Risks
Incubation/Acceleration programs accomplishment
Won the competition and other awards
Invention/Patent
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