Clear Conscience Pet has achieved its goal of being one of the first companies in the world to crowdfund a $25,000 loan on Kiva.org. Kiva is the first and largest global micro-crowdlending platform, and it has changed lives and helped small businesses by distributing over $1 billion in loans to 1.7 million borrowers in 82 countries since 2005. Clear Conscience Pet is the inventor of products that have won 21 awards since 2012 for its holistically formulated products including the SuperGravy line of instant holistic pet food topper gravy and broth mixes as well as the Airy Bark treats and Trachey Chewz beef and lamb dental chews.
Kiva,org loans previously were limited to $10,000, and Clear Conscience Pet was one of the first 10 companies in the world to be tapped for the $25,000 superloan pilot program. Founders Anthony Bennie, winner of Pet Age’s ICON Award, and Amanda Malone Bennie, a 2017 winner of Pet Age’s Women of Influence Award, were endorsed for the loan by Kiva Trustee Pennye Jones-Napier, co-owner of pioneering independent natural pet care retailer The Big Bad Woof in Washington, DC.
“We have known Anthony and Amanda for a decade and watched them take their vision for a sustainable and thoughtful line of treats and SuperGravy food toppers to a national brand,” Jones-Napier said. ͞”We were delighted to endorse this loan since Clear Conscience Pet makes exactly the type of clean label products that independent pet supply stores need to keep them competitive today.”
The crowd loan faced a steep challenge as one of only 10 such loans ever offered on the crowdlending platform. The pilot program was offered by Kiva.org invitation only, and the pilot program was strictly limited to companies with strong fundamental metrics of social media support, product integrity, and sustainable and responsible business ethics.
“We are so very grateful to the 183 lenders and 39 lending teams that supported our loan and to our dear friend Pennye of The Big Bad Woof,” Amanda Bennie said. “We had friends, family and colleagues backing the loan, but the biggest surprise was that so many of our customers actually contributed quite generously. That is so humbling and gratifying because I really don’t think that many brands have customers who believe in their products and philosophy so much that they would lend money interest-free to their companies.”
Founder and chief nutrition officer Anthony Bennie spoke about the impact of industry consolidation on smaller brands.
“As an independent company in an industry increasingly dominated by megabrands and supported by equity capital, Clear Conscience Pet has had to work harder than ever to keep growing. Independent manufacturers are under pressure, and this is bad for consumers and pets because it means more products but less true choice,” Bennie said. ͞”CCP has invested heavily to develop innovative products that bring healthy joy to animals and trusted value to consumers. We can’t even express how much it means to us financially and spiritually to receive this outpouring of support.”