3rd December, 2014
Kennewick, WA, USA
Start-Up Company Partners with Non-Profits; Launches Website and iPhone App to Sell Photos
For years Chris Barber of Kennewick, WA has participated in fund-raising 5k runs for charities, contributed time and finances to his church’s community programs, and even currently serves a local non-profit organization by sitting on the organization’s board of directors. Barber also has spent years admiring socially-conscience companies like Ben and Jerry’s, TOMs Shoes, and Starbucks. These companies are able to conduct profitable businesses, while also aggressively driving social justice programs as a component of their business model.
“TOMs Shoes is a great example of a profitable company that does great socially-responsible things in the world,” remarked Barber. “For every pair of shoes TOMs sells in the marketplace, they also donate a pair of shoes to an impoverished child somewhere in the world. It’s a simple idea, yet very effective in their mission to provide shoes for needy children worldwide; and the amazing thing is, TOMs continues to financially grow their company year after year.” This straightforward approach of a for-profit company driving social change inspired Barber to create his own socially-conscious company with two business partners.
Together with Kris Jonas of Boise, ID and Reed Smith of Lehi, UT, Barber embarked on creating PixCell8.
Jonas explains, “With the widespread use of smartphone cameras, our world has become increasingly image-driven. This has created a new marketplace where the average individual can sell their photos to companies in need of natural-looking images for their advertising and business needs. Through PixCell8 (www.PixCell8.com) or our iPhone app we are creating an online marketplace where users can upload images, sell them to any company, and receive an equal split of the sale price with PixCell8 from the sale of their photo.” Barber adds, “The neat thing about PixCell8 is that for every image that is sold 20% of the sale price goes to one of eight vetted non-profit organizations featured on our website. Like TOMs Shoes, it’s a very straightforward way to help social cause issues by the passive funding of non-profit organizations for each transaction PixCell8 conducts.”
Users join the site for free and upload images (either through the site or free iPhone app) for buyers to purchase stock images. The cost for a buyer to purchase one of the photos is $20, which is fairly low in the stock image industry. The money spent to buy the photo is split between the photographer and PixCell8 at $8 each, and a non-profit organization receives $4. Smith commented, “Companies of all sizes are increasingly in need of natural-looking stock images for their business needs that don’t cost hundreds of dollars in licensing fees, but also don’t violate copyright law.” Smith continued, “Copyright infringement of images is an ever-growing problem worldwide, and audiences today are savvy enough to notice an artificial-looking subject or models in stock images purchased from the large commercial stock photography sites.” “That’s where PixCell8 fills a need”, remarked Barber.
“PixCell8 will be a great alternative in that the images available reflect realistic-looking subjects, people, etc. in authentic settings at a very low price per image.” Jonas concluded, “Anyone with a digital or smartphone camera will be able to participate in the sale of the photos they capture in everyday life, regardless of age or professional training. If the photo looks good, then it has the potential to be sold on PixCell8 and help a non-profit organization.” Barber explains, “Right now we’re intensely concentrated on focusing our energies into building up PixCell8’s catalogue of photos. We are encouraging anyone with a smartphone to upload their photos.”
PixCell8 has already collected over 1000 uploaded images for sale as a result of their soft launch recently and has formed official partnerships with five non-profit organizations: The Wounded Warrior Project, charity: water, Kiva, a local chapter of Habitat for Humanity, and SOLD Experience. They are looking to form partnerships with three more non-profits, to round out their official list of eight organizations.