The Emeryville, Calif. company emphasizes small artisans in developing countries. In order to sell products on the World of Good website, you must be certified as meeting environmental and ethical standards by an independent “trust provider” such as Transfair USA, Co-op America, or Aid to Artisans. The products include everything from electronics to jewelery to fair-trade coffee.
World of Good launched its marketplace in September, the same month that ethical shopping site GoodGuide also launched; both companies have connections to the University of California, Berkeley (World of Good was founded by Berkeley business school grads). Despite the similarities, the startups offer different approaches to the same niche. Where GoodGuide focuses on providing a lot of data about common products in a narrow (if growing) range of industries, World of Good is about actually selling products that are certified as ethical and environmentally friendly.
The eBay partnership makes sense, and not just because it means World of Good doesn’t have to build its own store. EBay founder Pierre Omidyar’s Omidyar Network is an investor, and supposedly Robert Chatwani, the eBay executive who co-founded the online marketplace, had been pitching an ethically- and environmentally-focused eBay marketplace for a while.
In addition to the web market, the company also sells these goods directly to retailers like Whole Foods through its Original Good brand. World of Good previously raised $4 million from Draper Fisher Jurvetson and Omidyar Network in 2006. The new funding comes from DFJ.