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Monday, Jul 22, 2024

Goodwill Plots Next 10 Years

Goodwill of Orange County is at the start of a 10-year plan to double its retail footprint and workforce development outreach, being led in part by Chief Financial Officer Elizabeth Jensen.

With its current count of 24 stores for the Santa Ana-based nonprofit, Goodwill OC is looking to approach a 50-store count by 2033.

The first store toward this goal opened last September in Anaheim at 790 North Brookhurst St.

It is Goodwill OC’s largest store spanning 23,942 square feet.

A second store opened in Orange on Taft Street in October. Two more stores are expected to open this year, starting with a shop in Fountain Valley this month. Goodwill recently signed a lease for a new spot in Costa Mesa.

The organization is also opening a new Irvine donation center at Irvine United Congregational Church.

Jensen said with donations driving revenue, Goodwill is aiming to open more centers in cities without a store.

“With this growth, we create new jobs,” Jensen told the Business Journal. “That is the mission—creating a place where people can come work and build their careers.”

Jensen was honored in the nonprofit category at the Business Journal’s CFO of the Year Awards last May.

There’s significant demand in OC for additional Goodwill stores, based on the volume of donations and same-store metrics, according to Jensen.

The local organization, which launched in 1924, reported $169 million in local revenue for the 12 months ended June 2023.

Sales from its brick-and-mortar side are combined with Goodwill’s growing online shop, which can generate almost $270 million in sitewide sales, to fund the organization’s job coaching and career support services.

Online sales from ShopGoodwill.com, which is run out of Orange County, surpassed a cumulative $2 billion last year.

ShopGoodwill brings together items from 130 Goodwill organizations across the country. Revenue is then shared among the participating organizations, though the local chapter has managed the website since its inception in 1999.

The website has 3.4 million registered customers as of 2023.

The nonprofit integrated the secondary e-commerce site GoodwillBooks.com into the website in October to help expand offerings.

Goodwill served 23,110 individuals in its workforce development programs last year and met its fundraising goal.

Fundraising fills in the gaps of funding Goodwill’s programs that the retail stores cannot fully provide, Jensen said.

“We are responsible to ensure that we are good stewards of the funds that are entrusted to us,” Jensen added.

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