About Sumthing


How we fund our mission:
Purpose first, profit later

We make money. There, we said it. For every €6 you donate, we keep €1. We use this money, the Sumthing fee, to build and grow our platform to ensure nature receives even more donations. We use it for the technologies we use to externally validate donations and to visualise the results. And we ultimately even make profit. BOOM. We said it again.


Making profit is not a bad thing. It depends on what you do with it and who is entitled to it. And it should never become a goal in itself.

Guess what!

Every organisation, whether for-profit or non-profit, has to deal with certain costs they need to cover. They need to pay salaries, marketing or customer acquisition fees, and other costs essential to run the organisation.

Therefore, getting 100% of your donation to nature simply doesn’t exist. The ambition to keep your costs as low as possible does exist however. We think it's crucial to be upfront about where your money goes.

That’s why we are so open about the Sumthing fee. We use 17% of your donation for overhead. And if there’s sumthing left under the bottom line, it’s profit. 

Steward-Owned for Purpose

We all know for-profit and non-profit organisations. And then there's the ones in between, so called social enterprises, which we’re proudly part of.

At Sumthing, Profit does not have a seat at the table. Our Mission, however, she does. Because she is pretty. And way more important than Profit. That’s why we decided to become her caretaker. Her steward. And yes, we know, it’s one thing to say it, it’s another thing to actually put it in practice. We did the other thing. We became steward owned.

So, that steward owned thing.
What’s that about? 

Well, Steward Ownership is about two principles: self governance and mission driven profits. Let’s take a closer look at these two very eloquent terms.

Self governance

means that voting rights are held by stewards directly connected to our mission. These rights can't be sold, ensuring that every decision always benefits our mission.

Mission driven profits

means that founders and investors receive fair compensation, and that we use the rest of our profits to make our mission happy. Did we already mention how important (and pretty!) she is?

For Sumthing’s structure, this means the following:

Self governance

  • The Sumthing Foundation (the stewards) ensures Sumthing stays true to its purpose
  • The Golden Share Foundation, an independent organisation, safeguards the steward-owned structure of Sumthing (and other member companies)

The Sumthing Foundation makes decisions, while the Golden Share Foundation holds the veto right to any decision that concerns our steward-ownership structure or purpose.

Mission driven profits

There are two groups of shareholders that have (capped) economic rights: 

  • Investors, brought together in a STAK (Stichting Administratiekantoor), a foundation that holds the shares collectively
  • Founders, each in their personal holdings

At the end of each year, in case of a positive bottom line, the stewards determine what percentage of profits can be allocated to the shareholders. This is maximum 50% and it can never jeopardise Sumthing’s financial health. Once caps have been reached, the Sumthing Foundation receives all economic rights, and invests any remaining profit to further fund our mission outside of Sumthing.

Learn more?

We are very proud to join pioneering steward owned brands like Patagonia, Ecosia and Triodos, and if you let us, we won’t shut up talking about it.

Tell me more