Benevity’s founding CEO, Bryan de Lottinville, is stepping away from the leadership role – for the second time in less than a year.
de Lottinville is set to become executive chairperson of the Calgary-based corporate social responsibility software startup, with president and CFO Kelly Schmitt taking over as CEO. Candice Li will fill Schmitt’s role as CFO. Li previously served as Benevity’s executive vice president of finance. All transitions will take effect on February 1.
“My greatest concern and desire have been in finding the right stewardship for Benevity to realize its full potential.”
– Bryan de Lottinville
In May, BetaKit reported that de Lottinville was stepping down as CEO and becoming executive chairman. However, after his replacement, Andrew Huddart, had to depart “due to health reasons,” the founder stepped back into the role in July.
de Lottinville led Benevity through a recent deal with private equity firm Hg, which officially closed on January 15 and saw the firm taking a majority controlling stake in Benevity. The transaction reportedly brought Benevity’s valuation to more than $1 billion USD.
de Lottinville will now officially step back from day-to-day operations and focus on the strategic growth of Benevity, working closely with the board and new CEO.
Schmitt has been with Benevity for more than two years serving as CFO and president. The company noted that she has been instrumental in “stewarding” it through the COVID-19 crisis, “as well as the myriad of challenges in 2020.”
“This is an exciting time for me, both personally and professionally,” said de Lottinville. “As a founder, my greatest concern and desire have been in finding the right stewardship for Benevity to realize its full potential, for our people, our clients and the broader social impact landscape.”
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“With Hg as our new investor, a fantastic business partner in Kelly Schmitt, and the continued ascension of our very own talent to key leadership positions, I couldn’t ask for a better succession plan,” he added. “Kelly’s passion and dedication to Benevity has been nothing short of remarkable, especially as we pivoted to working from home in the face of the pandemic and responded swiftly to the needs of more businesses to act with purpose in times of crisis.”
Benevity is one of Calgary’s largest and most successful tech startups. It was founded in 2008 as a platform that enables companies to engage their employees and customers around social responsibility and community investment, hoping to create better business and social impacts. The startup employs more than 600 people, with a customer base of 650 clients spanning large, global enterprises like Microsoft, Coca-Cola, Google, and Honda. Since it was founded, Benevity claims to have processed almost $6 billion dollars in donations and 34 million volunteering hours.
“Over the past 12 years, Benevity has moved companies from traditional approaches to social responsibility to truly grassroots-driven impact that reflects the passion and purpose of their people,” said Schmitt. “I am looking forward to working with our team, our clients and causes to accelerate this momentum, help more companies engage more employees and customers to become their best selves through driving social impact, and continue to infuse a culture of Goodness into the world.”