Co-founders of Pledge 1%, Atlassian has partnered with leading financial services organisations to create a Deed of Equity Gift. 

Atlassian creates Deed of Equity GiftAustralia’s tech start-up darling, Atlassian, has further delivered on their commitment to give back but creating a Deed of Equity Gift.  

The Deed provides a legal roadmap for start-up founders who are keen to pledge 1% of equity to their chosen charities or nonprofits under the Pledge 1% campaign. 

Pledge 1%, co-founded by Atlassian, helps businesses embed philanthropy into their entire business model by pledging to donate 1% of equity, profit, product, time, or a combination of all four. Pledging equity has always been less straight forward than some of the other methods of giving back, however, it’s an attractive option for start-ups who are keen to do their bit but may have low or even no profit.  

For charities, equity pledges could take years for funds to be released or distributed, or changing circumstances could mean that pledges never translate into funding.  

Last year, F&P covered the first instance of an ASX-listed company donating 1% to equity to a nonprofit, Starlight Foundation. 

The Deed of Equity, created thanks to pro bono work from PwC Australia, Herbert Smith Freehills and Australian Philanthropic Services, will help founders to formalise their equity pledge, confirm their tax position and support the work of nonprofits. 

“We’re delighted to have played a role in addressing some of the potential challenges in the tax system when founders take the step of formalising their pledge. Would-be philanthropists are looking to give back, but don’t want to be caught up in tax complications that create uncertainty and restrict the ability to make an impact,” says PwC’s Tax Partner, Jonathan Malone. 

Data analytics and artificial intelligence startup, Cangler, has been the first company to execute the Deed of Equity Gift. 

“It was always my desire for Cangler to be a profitable social-impact corporation which balances purpose and profit by making the community a key shareholder in the business,” Herbert says. 

“We initially took the pledge in February 2019, since we always wanted to engrain social impact and giving as part of our company DNA. We decided to execute the deed to make that promise legally enforceable. We’ve worked closely with the Atlassian Foundation, PwC, and Australian Philanthropic Services to execute the Deed of Equity Gift, which I hope will encourage other founders and organisations to follow suit.” 

We’re looking forward to seeing how this Deed of Equity Gift gives more businesses the confidence to pledge equity to their charities of choice. 

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