Verlinvest leads USD41.5m Investment in Who Gives A Crap

Who Gives A Crap raises AUD41.5 million, in a funding round led by Verlinvest, to accelerate its mission to help two billion people around the world access clean toilets and safe water.

The company donates 50 per cent of all profits to the cause, and has donated over USD10 million to impact partners around the globe that work with local communities to build sustainable sanitation solutions.

However there’s still billions of dollars required to meet its mission. It’s for this reason that Who Gives A Crap decided to take on its first ever capital, from a hand-picked group of like-minded investors, after being bootstrapped for nine years.

Now selling in just under 40 countries and with 135 employees across seven countries, Who Gives A Crap is plastic-free, provides carbon-neutral shipping and is continuously optimising its products and supply chain to reduce its environmental impact, while making a real societal impact.

The capital will help unlock new ways of scaling the business to accelerate towards the goal of providing access to clean, safe water and toilets to everyone in the world.

Who Gives A Crap is working with carefully selected investors who each bring world-class experience and expertise in helping purpose-led companies grow sustainably, including Verlinvest (whose Executive Director, Raphael Thiolon, will be joining the Who Gives A Crap Board), Grok Ventures, Craftory, JamJar Investments, Airtree Ventures,  and Giant Leap. Joining them is an array of strategic investors who will help drive the company’s mission of doing good, including former Unilever CEO Paul Polman (via Manatu Partners) and founders from Adore Beauty (Kate Morris and James Height), Culture Amp (Didier Elinga and Doug English) and Canva (Cameron Adams). The round was also supported by a handful of Australia’s best athletes via Athletic ventures from Basketball, Cricket, AFL and Soccer, including Matthew Dellavedova, Mitchell Starc, Alyssa Healy, Nat Fyfe, Josh Kelly, Matt de Boer and Stefan Mauk.

The investment was led by Verlinvest, a family-owned investment group focused on driving growth for purpose-led brands including Oatly, Tony’s Chocolonely and more. Ben Black of VerlInvest, says: “We invest behind global brands and entrepreneurs driving long-term shifts in consumer behaviour, and believe that enterprise should be a force for good, playing a role in shaping society. Who Gives A Crap’s ethos and model is exactly what excites us about building a more sustainable business ecosystem. Simon and his team have developed a profitable, consumer-centric business model enabling growth at scale, intrinsic to which is driving a mission to give everyone access to clean water and sanitation – whilst leading the shift away from deforesting virgin paper products. We’re excited to support the Who Gives A Crap’s team in accelerating internationally, and setting an example for other disrupting brands to offer consumers ethical solutions to today’s most significant problems.”

Mike Cannon-Brookes, on behalf of Grok Ventures — the private investment firm focused on solving the world’s biggest problems — says: “Who Gives A Crap is an impressive Aussie underdog story. Simon and his team have taken something so simple – toilet paper – and turned it into an impactful business, both socially and environmentally. I hope other entrepreneurs are inspired by their story of building a profitable, fast growing business that is also environmentally sustainable.”

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