Five Years of Substantial Growth from Incoming Contributions
Foundations have two primary sources of asset growth, 1) investment returns, and 2) new contributions. At FoundationAdvocate, we spend the lion’s share of out time focusing on investment returns, but we thought it would be interesting to understand a little more about the incoming contributions.
Private foundations are an increasingly important source of funding for charities overall, as foundation-giving now accounts for nearly 18% of total philanthropic support, up from 15% in 2003 (Giving USA Report).
Although foundations are required to pay out 5% of their assets each year in grants and operating expenses, many contribute more. In fact, aggregate disbursements have been about 8% of beginning total assets.
Who Has Been Giving To Foundations?
A lot of the new money flowing into foundations has come from technology entrepreneurs (i.e., 8 in the list below are from the Bay Area, plus Gates and Dell). These are in addition to other, familiar names in philanthropy (Walton, Bloomberg and Buffett to name a few)..
Biggest Inflows in the Past Thre Years
The combination of incoming contributions and investment performance pushed foundation assets to the $1 trillion mark in 2017.