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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Omaze, a company that helps nonprofits fundraise by organizing sweepstakes, has raised $85 million in Series C funding led by Louis Bacon’s Moore Strategic Ventures.

Why it matters: While Omaze's customers are non-profits, the company is not only a for-profit, but also taking in venture dollars — a financing model that's often criticized for pushing companies to prioritize growth and shareholder returns over their impact on society.

The big picture: Omaze is, of course, far from the only for-profit company to serve non-profit customers or operate in an adjacent space.

  • GoFundMe, for example, has widely become the go-to destination for people trying to pay off medical bills, funeral costs and other tragedies.
  • In a similar spirit, companies are cropping up to help workers push back on their employers — essentially using capital to built tools to fight against capitalism.

What they're saying: "We chose to start this as a business because we saw that we could have more impact as a business than a nonprofit," co-founder and CEO Matt Pohlson tells Axios.

  • "It's really hard to fight some of the forces in our society, so how do you harness them?" Pohlson added.
  • Pohlson adds that Omaze not only helps non-profits spend less energy and time on fundraising, but also introduces them to new donors: 90% of a participating charity's donors via Omaze haven't donated to that organization before.

Details: Along with lead investor Moore Strategic Ventures, FirstMark Capital, Wndrco, Telstra Ventures, Causeway Media Partners, Mockingbird Ventures, BDMI, Pegasus Tech Ventures, Bono, Kerry Washington, Tom Brady and Alexis Ohanian also participated in the round.  

Editor's note: The story has been updated to correct the spelling of Moore Strategic Ventures and Pegasus Tech Ventures, and add a word ("hard") accidentally omitted in one of Pohlson's quotes.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Oct 6, 2021 - Energy & Environment

The latest VC money for cleaner concrete

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

CarbonBuilt, a Los Angeles startup with tech to embed CO2 in concrete, just raised $10 million in Series A funding.

Why it matters: It's among several startups attracting capital to make climate-friendly concrete and cut the massive emissions from the production of cement, a key concrete component.

White House unveils plan to "quickly" vaccinate kids ages 5-11

Charles Muro, 13, is inoculated at Hartford Healthcare's mass vaccination center at the Connecticut Convention Center in Hartford, Conn. Photo: Joseph Prezioso/AFP via Getty Images

The White House on Wednesday released its plan to vaccinate children between the ages of five and 11, pending authorization from the Food and Drug Administration of the first COVID-19 shot for that age group.

The big picture: The White House said it has secured enough vaccine supply to equip more than 25,000 pediatric and primary care offices, hundreds of school and community health clinics, as well as tens of thousands of pharmacies, to administer the shots.

1 hour ago - Sports

Where it stands: Weed policies by U.S. sports league

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

With public support for marijuana legalization nearing unanimity, and more athletes using cannabis to treat pain, the four major U.S. sports leagues continue to reduce restrictions and punishments.

Driving the news: NBA players won't be subject to random marijuana testing this season, an extension of an agreement between the league and its players' union that began ahead of the 2020 Orlando restart.