Online bank Aspiration, which has a socially conscious mission, recently announced it would give customers 3 to 5 percent back on purchases from socially conscious brands, according to a report by Bloomberg.
There are more than a dozen companies in the deal, including eyeglass brand Warby Parker and Brandless, a household goods retailer. Andrei Cherny, who co-founded the company in 2015, was a former speechwriter for Al Gore and Bill Clinton.
“It provides the encouragement people need to vote with their dollars,” Cherny said. “We want to find every way we can to help people line up their money with their morals.”
As opposed to the cultural method of boycotting brands that aren’t liked, Aspiration provides customers with an opportunity to support companies that they believe are doing good things for the world. The company is positioning itself to attract millennials, who have proven to be more socially and environmentally conscious than previous generations.
Customers who shop at Warby Parker, a brand that donates glasses to the needy, get 5 percent back, and a purchase with the dog-walking app Wag, a company that gives meals to animal shelters, gets 3 percent back. Aspiration said the retailers and the bank will jointly fund the rewards.
Based in Marina del Rey in California, Aspiration bills itself as a socially responsible bank. It has previously said it will never use customer savings to support fossil fuels. It also allows customers to track purchases made with sustainable brands.
Aspiration has received support from some famous places and names, including Academy Award-winning actor Leonardo DiCaprio, who joined the bank’s board of advisers earlier this year. The bank has upwards of two million customers, and it said it considered the companies chosen for the cashback programs as leaders in the sustainability space.