Cryptocurrency startup Ripple donated $29 million of its own digital currency XRP to support U.S. public schools, the company announced Wednesday.
The donation, which Ripple said is the largest-ever cryptocurrency gift to a single charity, fulfilled thousands of requests from public school teachers on the crowdfunding site DonorsChoose.org. The money will be used to buy classroom materials for more than 28,000 public school teachers across all 50 states, the company said in a statement.
Charles Best, founder and CEO of DonorsChoose.org, said he approached Ripple based on CEO Brad Garlinghouse's previous involvement with the foundation. He sent Ripple executives an email laying out the possible impact of fulfilling the teachers' requests.
"To my own shock, they said yes," said Best, who founded the charity 18 years ago. "It was mind-blowing that it would be the largest donation of cryptocurrency."
Ripple is officially the name of a San Francisco-based company developing a network for faster global financial payments. XRP is the name of the digital token that financial institutions on the network can use to transact quickly.