Facebook Users Give up Profile Picture for Acción USA

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Micro-financing leader Acción USA looking for $1million investment from Sam's Club: digital agency VerticPortals creates Facebook application to help raise awareness.

At ACCION USA, we are committed to serving low- and moderate-income communities by providing access to business financing and counseling. To do so successfully we are constantly on the lookout for funding and investors. To win such an investment from Sam's Club would provide a massive step in making a massive impact for our clients.

Sam's Club - one of the leading chains of membership-only retail warehouse clubs - recently asked its members to play an important role in supporting their community by asking them to vote for youth education or entrepreneurship organizations that deserved a portion of a $4 million overall investment. The organization that receives the most votes wins a $1 million grant from Sam's Club.

Acción USA has launched a Facebook application that asks users to donate their Facebook profile picture in aid of raising awareness of their participation with Sam's Club and helping them win the $1 million donation.

The application asks users to give up their profile picture for one day. In its place are the Acción USA logo and an invitation to the voting site http://www.donateprofilepicture.org. The user's status update also prompts their friends to do the same in aid of Acción USA.

Speaking on behalf of Acción USA, Gina Harman, said "At ACCION USA, we are committed to serving low- and moderate-income communities by providing access to business financing and counseling. To do so successfully we are constantly on the lookout for funding and investors. To win such an investment from Sam's Club would provide a massive step in making a massive impact for our clients."

The application was created by digital agency VerticPortals. Its concept is based on empowering active Acción USA supporters to quickly and easily spread the word to their friends, whist also making these Facebook friends sit up and take notice of a significant profile change.

Sebastian Jespersen, CEO of VerticPortals, added "The Facebook profile picture has probably become one of the most personal items of the 21st Century. The pride and time people take in selecting the right photo, which will often be seen by hundreds of contacts every day, indicates that the profile picture is like a modern-day fashion accessory and a statement of who that individual is. Changing that profile picture, especially when combined with a status update, is impactful enough on the user's peer group that it too will convert for the right cause."

About Acción USA
ACCION USA is a nonprofit microfinance organization that provides access to capital and financial education to low- and moderate-income individuals, primarily minorities and women. A pioneer and recognized leader in U.S. microfinance,ACCION USA empowers individuals to create sustainable businesses, increase family incomes, and contribute to the economic development of cities across the U.S. Since inception in 1991, ACCION USA has provided over $115 million in small business loans ranging from $500 to $50,000, offered nationwide via the ACCION USA online lending platform.
To learn more, visit the http://www.accionusa.org

About VerticPortals
VerticPortals is a digital ad agency that provides comprehensive media solutions to some of the top companies in the world. VerticPortals' award winning solutions are based on their unique ability to blend the core competencies of strategy, story telling, creativity, interactive design and in-depth understanding of content creation in pursuit of tangible business results. Headquartered in Copenhagen, VerticPortals is also based in New York and Skopje and counts Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft, GlaxoSmithKline, Carlsberg and Nestle amongst their clients.
For more information, go to http://www.verticportals.com.

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Laurence Lipworth
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