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Atlanta, GA (May 25, 2009) - Today Better World Books announced the creation of an Incentive Stock Option program for its non-profit literacy partners, an unprecedented financial innovation in social entrepreneurship. The program puts aside approximately 5% of the company for use in stock option grants to an initial group of five literacy partners with potential to add others in the future: Books for Africa, Room to Read, Worldfund, the Robinson Community Learning Center and the National Center for Family Literacy.
In keeping with the company's core values, Better World Books is implementing this program to ensure its literacy partners can share in its financial success. Working alongside its primary equity investor, Good Capital, the company carved out a 5% ownership stake for its key literacy partners.
"We worked closely with Good Capital to come up with a way to more closely link our social mission to our business model, ensuring the future success of Better World Books results in benefits to our non-profit literacy partners," said Better World Books CEO, David Murphy.
"We created Better World Books to show that it is possible to do good while at the same time run a successful company. Our literacy partners are essential to our mission, and we want them to flourish," said Better World Books co-founder Xavier Helgesen. "Today's announcement ensures that as our company grows, our partners will too."
Better World Books plans to supplement the initial round of stock options with subsequent rounds of performance based options, which reward its literacy partners for their successes in promoting and supporting literacy; for the synergies they create with Better World Books; and for their innovativeness in addressing literacy and education challenges in the United States and around the world. These stock option grants will be based upon the partners' ability to achieve their own internal metrics for delivering on specified goals and objectives as well as how effectively they promote the collection and sales of books collected in book drives that provide Better World Books with its inventory.
"One key to our approach in social entrepreneurship is establishing clear, quantifiable benchmarks for success for our partners-and rewarding them when they meet or exceed those goals," said Murphy.
Better World Books, winner of the 2009 Business Week Most Promising Social Entrepreneur Award and a founding B Corporation, is a fast-growing social enterprise that collects books and sells them online to fund literacy initiatives worldwide. Through partnerships with more than 1,800 college campuses and 1,500 libraries nationwide, Better World Books has generated over $6 million for its non-profit, library and college partners, donated 1.3 million books to literacy programs globally, and diverted over 22 million books from landfills.
ABOUT BETTER WORLD BOOKS
Better World Books (www.BetterWorldBooks.com) is a not-only-for-profit social enterprise that collects and sells books online with each sale generating funds for literacy initiatives in the U.S. and around the world. With more than three million new and used titles in stock, Better World Books is a self-sustaining company that balances the social, economic and environmental values of its stakeholders. Since its founding in 2003, the Mishawaka, Ind.-based company has raised $6 million for its non-profit literacy, library and college partners; diverted more than 25 million pounds of books from landfills; achieved over 8,000 tons of carbon offsets through carbon-neutral shipping, and created more than 200 full-time jobs with meaningful benefits.
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