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Comic Relief



Comic Relief is a major charity based in the UK, with a vision of a just world, free from poverty.

Comic Relief wished to monetise a celebrity challenge that was essentially a way of promoting the Sport Relief campaign. Alan Shearer and Robbie Savage were racing to be the first to sit on half the seats in Wembley stadium.

The challenge for Capen was not only to create a dynamic looking competition site that was optimised for all devices and browsers, we also had pass extensive BBC due diligence on security and technical process and demonstrate an ability to handle peaks and sustained traffic. The BBC unit that engaged with Capen to complete due diligence is the Interactivity Technical Advice and Contracts Unit (ITACU).

ITACU review terms and conditions for competitions and

 voting; carry out tenders and award contracts for service providers and verify their processes; select and contracts third party verifiers; act as a repository for all relevant documentation associated with competitions, and facilitate regular audits of the BBC uses of all such interactivity. Sign off by ITACU is a mandatory part of any technical proposal to work on the Comic Relief Campaign.

The software was tested to 50,000 users per page and was functionally excellent. Payment volumes for such an established campaign with times of high peak activity needed to be excellent and we were able to run in excess of 50 transactions per second. To put this into context, Just Giving recently stated that during the Stephen Sutton fundraising campaign, they were called upon to process 18 transactions p/s at peak, which they described as beyond the capabilities of other fundraising platforms.

The software was also required to pass the BBC Information and Security Team. 

The BBC Information Security documentation was completed. The document is required to assess the adequacy of security controls for all systems/projects/services that host BBC data, prior to those systems going live. 

Normally this process takes an estimated six to nine weeks. Capen managed it in six days and were commended by the BBC team for the quality of its documentation, policies and knowledge.

At the time of writing, Comic Relief have formally green-lit a two-year agreement including Red Nose Day 2015 and Sport Relief 2016. The contract has provision for potential test activity in the US.

"Capen dealt with every challenge we threw at them to create a great looking website for Comic Relief 2015 within a really tight deadline"

Sarah Whitley/Comic Relief


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Working with us

We have already transacted over one million raffle and lottery entries. Scale your campaigns with confidence. Zaffo is tested to handle campaigns that require a minimum of 50 payments per second. We work with the UK's biggest brands and lots of the UK's smaller brands ….

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