Setting Up a New Philanthropic Foundation
Learn how BCG supported the setup of a new foundation, including defining the vision and mission.
KBZF is an initiative of the president of the United Arab Emirates, created to build upon the tradition of the humanitarian work of Abu Dhabi‘s Royal Family. Its goal is to increase its international philanthropic presence and to grow as a significant force in the global-development arena by creating a world-leading foundation.
The foundation has started small, with an initial staff of 20 people.
BCG was brought on board to develop an organizational structure and a strategy for KBZF. Namely, it was charged with helping the staff to refine the vision and mission of the new foundation. It was also asked to define, assess, and recommend strategic areas of focus and to develop an organizational structure for the foundation in line with its country’s national and global objectives.
To address these issues, the BCG team took a multi-pronged approach, which included:
A strategy audit involving both internal and stakeholder interviews to make an initial market assessment
A capabilities assessment
Market landscaping, including analysis of relative philanthropic topic areas like health, education, community, and economic development
Benchmarking of best practices within identified topic areas
Development of a strategy that included vision, mission, and objectives
Organizational design, including creation of an operations and delivery strategy
Our recommendations consisted of two major elements:
First, to develop a strategic vision for KBZF by identifying key areas of focus and types of projects to fund, and also by identifying key potential partners with similar areas of interest
Second, to develop an organizational structure in line with national and international goals, and, while continuing with its current programs, develop in preparation for future programs
The impact of these recommendations can already be seen. With a new organizational structure and strategy approved by its board—and with ongoing recruiting efforts supported by BCG—KBZF is implementing decisions that show a clear desire to create and manage programs in the areas of nutrition, vocational education, and water and sanitation.
Also, the foundation is in continued talks with other players to develop international partnerships.
Today, with a new focus on close collaboration on sustainable programs with long-term impacts, shorter, one-off projects are no longer given priority.