Cathie Anderson

Insights into the people who shape Sacramento’s business landscape

Cathie Anderson

‘Little team in Sacramento’ that helps charities has reached $1 billion milestone

By Cathie Anderson

canderson@sacbee.com

May 23, 2017 06:00 AM

Sacramento’s Webconnex will announce today that its online fundraising and event platforms crossed a big milestone Thursday, processing $1 billion in sales transactions for charities, event organizers, companies and individuals.

“We’ve intentionally stayed small and under the radar,” said John Russell, who self-funded the company with Eric Knopf in Sacramento. “We’ve brought in more customers in the last year and a half than we have in the history of the company....It’s amazing to reach a point where a billion dollars (in sales) have flowed through our software from this little team in Sacramento.”

Russell and Knopf began developing Webconnex software in 2008, but it wasn’t until 2010 that the software really began firing on all cylinders. Locally, companies such as Fleet Feet Sports have adopted Webconnex’s Red Podium software to get athletes registered for runs, walks and other races.

Corporations such as BMW, Gap and Google employ RegFox to ticket employees for corporate vents. The American Cancer Society, Boys & Girls Club and other nonprofits raise money through the Giving Fuel program. Webconnex’ Ticket Spice platform allows concert and festival promoters to sell tickets. Russell and Knopf added a crowdfunding program called GroupRev in 2013.

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Webconnex clients opt for the company’s platforms over eventbrite.com and other industry heavyweights because Webconnex gives the organizers the rights to their end-user information and complete control over ticketing pages. Webconnex makes money from the subscriptions and fees it charges its customers.

“They control all the branding, all the look and feel,” Russell said. “Frankly, if we do our job properly, their customers won’t know we exist. We give them all the control to make it look and feel like them, and then we give them all the control to completely customize their registration or ticketing or donation experience....They can do almost anything within their registration page, including where they put the fields.”

Webconnex employs about 16 people now, Russell said, and it’s looking to add employees in customer support and software development.

Cathie Anderson: 916-321-1193, @CathieA_SacBee