Corporations have considerable weight and pull when it comes to their influence in their communities. They draw people into their stores, online or off, and generate large profits for their shareholders. What is sometimes less known is the fact that corporations also donate to charities. Donating is more than just a vehicle to reduce tax liability; it’s a way to create public good will and give a face to an otherwise faceless entity. Following are large corporations that give to charities while also offering coupons to help customers save money on the products they sell. They are not mutually exclusive, as corporations still give even when customers use coupons.
Saks Fifth Avenue
Image via Flickr by Nicholas Eckhart
Saks Fifth Avenue donates to hundreds of charities on an annual basis and through various means. Its primary way of donating to charities is through its store credit card. Cardholders are given the option to pick a charity from a list provided in their charge statement. From there, Saks gives 5 percent of the purchases from a given month to the selected charity.
Another way Saks helps charities is by selling items that directly benefit charities through their sale. The corporation stocks merchandise that’s associated with a charity. When the item sells, the vendor donates a set amount from the sale to the stated charity.
Saks itself works with one charity a year in order to focus its efforts. Currently the corporation is working with the Water charity. Water provides clean drinking water to communities without access to safe and clean drinking water. One-hundred percent of all donations from Saks go directly to the charity.
This famous women’s clothing line donates money to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF). In 2015, Ann Taylor raised $4.65 million for BCRF, and has donated over $26 million since 2005. The donated money goes directly to scientists who are actively engaged in research to fight breast cancer.
Ann Taylor raises money for the charity during annual donation drives through its Ann Taylor and LOVELOFT cards. The card costs $25 and gives the user 25 percent off their purchases for two months at Ann Taylor and LOFT stores. In turn, the corporation donates 90 percent of the purchase price to BCRF.
Williams-Sonoma is much more than a high-end cookware store. It gives back to the community through various charities that include St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, AIDS Walks in San Francisco, helping communities rebuild after a natural disaster, and through partnerships with its employees. Employees of Williams-Sonoma are encouraged to work with local charities. In turn, the corporation donates money to the local charities, directly affecting the community in a way that an overarching donation can’t. Williams-Sonoma feels strongly about corporate responsibility, and charity is just one of the ways it seeks to reach out to people from all walks of life.
These corporations focus on improving quality of life for individuals and communities around the world. They prove that they are more than just a profit center for shareholders by working on ways to help those who may have never heard of their brand.