How would you like to buy lunch with Will Kassoy, the new president of Omaze? I’m just kidding, but Kassoy has joined a company that makes such things possible. It’s an online fundraising platform that offers once-in-a-lifetime experiences to people who donate money for causes. You could, for instance, donate money to win the chance to celebrate Ringo Starr’s birthday with him.
Los Angeles-based Omaze has grown fast to nearly 100 employees, and Kassoy, the cofounder and former CEO of AdColony, has joined Omaze as its first president, reporting to CEO Matt Pohlson.
Omaze brought on Kassoy, a seasoned executive with proven public and private company experience, to focus on platform development, scaling operations, and driving revenue growth across Omaze’s unique offerings. In his new role, Kassoy will work closely with Pohlson. In addition to product development, he will oversee marketing, content, and sales.
With over 20 years of entertainment marketing and brand management, Kassoy was most recently was the CEO of AdColony, a mobile video advertising platform that reached over a billion consumers globally.
Kassoy guided the company from pre-revenue launch and scaled it globally, leading to a $350 million exit when the company was sold to Opera Software. In 2017, AdWeek named Kassoy one of its MarTech Superstars.
“Will’s unique track record for building businesses from early stage to global scale speaks for itself,” said Pohlson, in a statement. “He’s a brilliant marketing and product mind and an inspirational leader. We are thrilled to have him join our team as we build Omaze into the first for-profit company to give a billion dollars to charity in a single year.”
Omaze campaigns connect influencers, nonprofits, and donors, and have raised over $100 million to support the work of more than 350 charities. Omaze directs critical resources to trustworthy global nonprofits on the front lines of social change and empowerment. In turn, it provides a platform for people to dream big and do good at the same time.
“The opportunity to work with a forward-thinking company like Omaze is an honor,” said Kassoy. “I am excited to join Matt and his phenomenal team as we expand this innovative brand and scale the business globally.”
Omaze campaigns range from celebrity/influencer-based, to travel, cars, and more. One recent campaign: Win a one-of-a-kind Lamborghini blessed and signed by Pope Francis.
I asked why Kassoy was excited about Omaze. In an email, he replied, “I’ve always been passionate about digital marketing, entertainment/pop-culture and doing social good and Omaze delivers against all three. In addition, I’m proud of being part of the LA startup and technology ecosystem and love the diversity of companies, entrepreneurs and investors in Southern California.”
Kassoy left AdColony at the end of 2017. He became active in investing in startups in Los Angeles, and he met Pohlson last year and “fell in love with the opportunity at Omaze.”