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Hub SOMA-Based organization, Games that Give, Acquired by Vitrue

Wes Selke August 2, 2011

The impact investment space notched another win in the exit column when online gaming company, Games that Give (GtG), announced on July 19th that it was acquired by Vitrue, a leading social marketing platform.  Based at Hub Bay Area in the SOMA district of San Francisco, GtG offers many popular online games with the added benefit that gamers can generate cash for their favorite charities through the sharing of ad revenue from brand sponsors such as Pepsi and Domino’s.  To date, the company has raised over $100,000 for 15 non-profits including the Ronald McDonald House, American Heart Association, UNICEF, and St. Jude’s Hospital.  Co-founder and CEO, Adam Archer, said of the company, “We’ve created a powerful triangulation between brands, charities, and users where everyone benefits – big companies get cool branding opportunities, charities get more money, and users get a guiltless gaming experience.”  It’s worth pointing out that the $100,000 raised to date represents a new kind of giving that is expanding the giving pie, not taking from existing sources.
Vitrue, an Atlanta-based company that provides Fortune 1,000 companies with valuable social media tools, saw Games that Give as a key differentiator to add to its stable of social media offerings.  The fast-growing company recently raised $17 million and, according to Archer, was interested in GtG because the latter has begun to crack the code for providing big brands with cost effective solutions to leverage social gaming.  In addition to the business fit, Archer said there was a strong personal connection between him and Reggie Bradford, founder and CEO of Vitrue, that sealed the deal.  Both Archer and Bradford come from big families and were impacted by personal experiences that resulted in a shared passion for giving back.  Together they should be well positioned to execute on that shared value, as Vitrue plans to integrate GtG into its social marketing platform, meaning that every online game created for a Vitrue customer will eventually generate cash for charities.  Archer would not speculate on how much money the combined companies could raise for non-profits on an annual basis, but one could easily extrapolate to big dollar amounts given that Vitrue’s social media platform manages more than 600 million fans in 47 countries.
The terms of the transaction were not disclosed, but Archer indicated that Games that Give recently reached cash flow positive and that he was “very happy” with the outcome of the deal.  Chalk that up to a win-win-win for the impact investment space, charities, and the millions of gamers who can now feel a little better about all those hours they spend online.

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