Innovative fundraiser raises $35 million for charity

Written by By Lauren Long-Bailey Edited by Kevin Dowd This post originally appeared on CNN.com United on Purpose’s inaugural fundraising event was a major success, raising more than $35 million for the WE Charity…

Innovative fundraiser raises $35 million for charity

Written by By Lauren Long-Bailey

Edited by Kevin Dowd

This post originally appeared on CNN.com

United on Purpose’s inaugural fundraising event was a major success, raising more than $35 million for the WE Charity and SEEK Canada, a homeless-service provider. As part of the fundraising campaign, WE engaged Toronto’s downtown community and the real estate world to build visibility.

A well-known restaurant group, managed some 14 properties, a luxury retailer, a high-end real estate developer and a number of other business partnerships. Over the course of 16 months, the team saw property prices rise or fall by about five percent, on average. For the top-quality residences, the value increased by more than 15 percent, and in some cases the properties lost money, according to the CEO of XYZ Canada, Amir Ruaika.

Tenants bought into the campaign through matching purchases to “prize” properties. Ruaika estimated that investors split the proceeds 50-50 with the charities, which meant they were partly offsetting the cost of the project. “This is the reason why a market doesn’t fall apart, because people buy in when the price goes up because they realize that it’s going to go up. However, if the price goes down, then they don’t invest because the risk is higher.”

At one of the participating properties, The Eaton Building, a record-breaking 31 offers were made for suites ranging from $1.2 million to $6.6 million, according to WE Charity. WE officials say the offers were mostly matched with investors.

The top three cash offers secured the three remaining two remaining available suites, and three offers were matched with the acquisition price of $6.5 million. As a result, a total of seven properties were bought out at or above acquisition price.

From left: Ryan Dewar, co-founder of We Charity; Ariel Morgan, We Charity CEO; WE Charity co-founder, Ariane Hart; Willem Westering, Senior Partner of the Canadian Business Development Bank of Canada; Brittany Bruce, co-founder of WE Charity; and Amir Ruaika, President and CEO of XYZ Canada

The properties were purchased for a total of $36 million. The results meant that WE Charity was $6 million short of its goal.

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