The world’s first app which will donate all profits to charity has been announced – promising to give a bike to a child for every 387 downloads.
SideKick Cycle is a downhill biking app set to be a big hit for smartphone users when it goes on sale on the iTunes and Android stores worldwide in June.
Half the proceeds from the sale of every £0.69 app will go to World Bicycle Relief, which donate bikes to Third World children to help them get to school and have a better quality of life.
Elizabeth Sarquis, CEO of the Global Gaming Initiative, hopes SideKick Cycle will be the first of many more games that link directly with a specific charity.
She said: “The concept is simple – this initiative is about teaching a generation about the value of giving in a medium they understand – the smartphone game.
“At our core, we are a game publisher that creates compelling, fun mobile games that better our world.
“We try to deliver change in your pocket.”
World Bicycle Relief is a non-profit group which has provided more than 120,000 locally assembled, specialty bicycles to disaster victims, healthcare workers, students, and entrepreneurs across Africa since 2005.
Columbian-born Elizabeth, who lives in Minnesota, hopes her new app will kick-start a new era in socially-conscious gaming, where consumers realise they can make a positive impact to the lives of the less fortunate.
She said: “It’s a quite unique business model – we’re world-leaders because we want to give back exactly what we get from sales, to help less fortunate children.
“A bike can make a real difference in a child’s life, and while lots of people already donate to charity, many people would rather buy a game for their smartphone than give that cash to help others.
“The whole idea was conceptualised by my 14-year-old son who went to work for a non-profit organisation in Ecuador.
“He came home from that trip a different person, and he was particularly struck by one child, Xavier, who didn’t want to go to school because it was a six-hour walk there and back, and after school he still had to help out his family.
“Giving him a bike would help him get education, as well as help his family – that’s what we’re trying to do.”
From start to finish the game, which was developed by German-based studio It Matters, has taken two years.
The app is a downhill racing game, where users can do tricks and collect stars in a bid to get a high score on the global leaderboard rankings.
It also features a series of small, microtransactions that can boost not only the users’ bikes and performance, but also generates more revenue for the charity.