Phi Newsletter – November 2014

Welcome to the November 2014 issue of the Factary Phi Newsletter. We are very excited to announce that our new and improved version of Factary Phi has now been launched! You should already have been sent your updated login information for Phi, and to access it, please go straight to our website and use the link at the top of the page. We’d also love to hear what you think of new Phi, so please do get touch with any feedback on its new design.

Major Giving News

Children In Need to receive £1m

Scottish billionaire Sir Tom Hunter has donated £1m to Chris Evans’ Children In Need campaign.

Sir Tom, who first made his fortune from the sale of Sports Division to JJB Sports for £290m in 1998, is now a serial investor and helps a number of causes through the Tom Hunter Foundation.

Speaking on his decision to donate, the businessman quoted his father who said ‘The definition of real kindness is to help someone you’ll never meet.’

He also said he considered it a privilege to donate to Children in Need, but added that appearing on radio to announce his decision was ‘a little bit awkward’.

Deafblind charity nets £500,000

Philanthropist Gordon Neasham has left half a million pounds to Deafblind Scotland in his will.

He died in 2013, and had previously worked at Glasgow’s Western Infirmary. However, it was not until the charity’s 25th anniversary celebration in Glasgow that members and staff find learned of his donation.

Drena O’Malley, initiatives officer for the charity, said: ‘We cannot fully express our gratitude for Mr Neasham’s kindness.’

Citi donates £3m

The Garden Bridge Trust is set to receive a £3m donation from Citibank, who will become the Trust’s official banking partner.

The money will be used to support the running costs of the Trust, which will soon oversee the development of the UK’s first ever garden bridge, designed by Heatherwick Studio.

Its construction is planned for 2018, and Citi also intends to provide banking services and to help raise further substantial donations through its network of international corporate and private clients and staff fundraising activity.

James Bardrick, who is head of Citi in UK said: “From financing the first transatlantic telephone cable to the space shuttle, Citi has a 200 year history of working with individuals, institutions, and governments who have a vision of progress. We believe The Garden Bridge is a fantastic example of innovative city thinking that will help keep London at the forefront, enhancing quality of life and stimulating tourism and regeneration. It is a project that will make a meaningful difference to London and the UK and we’re proud to be playing our part in getting this wonderful bridge built.”

Next section: Report

Report: Coutts Million Pound Donor Report 2014

This month, we have included our summary of the Coutts Million Pound Donor Report 2014, conducted by Coutts Bank.


In 2013, the number of UK million pound donations rose by almost 50% when compared against the previous year. Notably however, there was only a very modest increase in donations in terms of their total value, increasing from £1.35b to £1.36b.

The reason for this relatively minor increase appears to be two-fold, the report states: there were a greater number of smaller donations in 2013 (£1m or just over), however unlike in previous years, there were no gifts of £100m or more.

Much of the major trends of previous years have continued, with universities remaining the most popular beneficiaries, and the overwhelming majority of million pound donors remain living in London. Despite this however, the largest gift in 2013 came from overseas (£75m), highlighting the role that international donors play in UK philanthropy.

This year, another notable difference was the more prominent role of corporations and corporate foundations. Their share of million pound donations rose dramatically in the year, while that of individual donors fell sharply.

Number and value

Overall, the number of million pound donations in the UK in 2013 continued the upward trend seen since the low point of the financial crisis in 2007.

In 2013, 166 donors made 292 charitable donations worth a million pounds or more, with a total value of £1.36b. This is significant, as it represents an almost 50% increase in the number of million pound donations compared with 2012, although there was only a 1% increase in total value compared with last year.

Average size

According to the report, the size of the average million pound donation in 2013 was lower than in previous years. This could be linked in an increase in the number of first-time donors, it is thought, as they are more than likely to give nearer to the lower end of the scale.

The mean value of donations was £4.6m and the median was £2m. The lack of any nine-figure donations brought down the 2013 average.

Almost 11% (31) of 2013’s donations were eight-figure sums (£10m or more), with the largest being £75m. However, the mean figure was notably lower than in 2012, as there was a larger than usual number that just qualified as million pound donations, 39 (13%) were exactly £1m.

Source of million pound donations

After a noticeable drop in 2012, donations from corporations appear to have recovered in 2013. In the previous year, and in every previous edition of this report (from 2008 to 2011) corporations accounted for roughly 10% of the total value, but in 2013, they hit a high of 15%. This is the result, the report states, of continued and strong philanthropic activity by established firms including British Gas, HSBC along with other multi-million donations by new organisation like Nominet UK, a domain name registry.

Compared with corporations, the percentage of gifts from individuals fell to 18% (£240m) in 2013, down from 32&#37 (£428m) in 2012. While this is a significant drop, it is thought that this is likely due to a shift in the method of giving rather than decline in the generosity of individuals. The vast majority of gifts categorised as individual donations are for less than £2m, but 21 of them were made through charitable trusts and foundations and these are of £10m or more, including three of more than £50m.

Location of million pound donations

As is to be expected, London has maintained its status as the centre of UK philanthropy, producing the majority of million pound donors (169). Including donors from the South East, they account for roughly three-quarters of the cumulative value of million pound donations last year. There is only one other region with a number £1m pound donations exceeded 10. This was the North West (16), which accounts for 6.5% of the total value.

Despite London’s position as the seat of philanthropy in the UK, it is worth noting that the largest single donation came from outside the UK, a £75m donation made to Oxford University from the McCall MacBain Foundation. Overall, there were 19 donations were made from nine countries outside of the UK, representing 14% of the total value.

Recipients of million pound donations

According to the research, million pound donations were well spread, with a total of 241 recipients receiving 292 donations. Of these, there were only 28 organisations that received more than one donation of £1m or more. Nineteen of these organisations got two each, and the remaining 9 were either universities or major brand charities.

Distribution of million pound donations

As was also the case in previous years, higher education and charitable trusts and foundations were the main destinations for million pound donations. Together these attracted 64% of the total overall value of these donations.

The largest share (41%) went towards higher education institutions (HEIs), which also received seven of the 10 largest donations, all of which were worth at least £30m. 33 Universities received seven-figure donations, and 11 of these saw more than one donation of this size. Oxford received 12 of these gifts and Cambridge was given seven, however nine non-Oxbridge HEIs accepted at least one eight-figure gift.

Foundations remained a popular choice, with 23% of donations either being used to set up, or to top up charitable trusts and foundations. However as is noted in previous reports, not all of this money is available immediately, as it is largely ‘banked’ for distribution over time. This allows for a continuous flow of funds from these into giving vehicles, which in turn helps to guarantee a future level of support for charitable organisations.

Clickhere for a full version of the report.

Next section: Phi Database Update

Phi in Numbers November 2014

(Some of) the challenges of Phi research

What is perhaps not immediately obvious when looking at the Phi database is the number of organisations researched where no donation history has been found in the public domain.

Our initial research amongst a sample of charities prior to launching ourselves on the project indicated that around 50% of charities would list their major donors in some form – be they individuals, foundations, companies or a combination of all three. As time has moved on, it has become clear that the chance of us finding donation history in the public domain is in fact somewhat lower than this initial estimate.

Which organisations have been researched?

The most commonly researched organisations have been universities and colleges (20% of those researched), followed by health (14% of the total) and arts & culture related organisations (9% of the total). The least represented organisations have been those caring for the elderly or those with mental health issues and those working in law/conflict related fields (all at 1% of the total).

This has, of course, been somewhat influenced by the fact that we have been able to research 100% of the universities and further education colleges in the UK whereas we have had to focus our efforts on the top 1,000 fundraising charities in other sectors.


The picture begins to change, however, when we look at the types of organisation for which donation history has been found.

The organisations at or close to our original 50% estimate in terms of how many show donation history in the public domain are heritage charities (55% likelihood of providing donation history), children/youth charities (52% likelihood), arts/culture charities (50% likelihood) and mental health charities (49% likelihood).

The types of charities least likely to publish donation history are those working in the religious sphere where the chance of finding information on strategic donors is a very low 4%.


It seems clear that there will be two main reasons behind a lack of availability of information – either the charity does not run a major donor programme (- this seems quite likely to be the case for religious organisations for example) or they have chosen not to publish the names of their major donors in the public domain.

Which of these is the case will clearly vary from organisation to organisation, and may not always be clear even from a close examination of financial data on funding sources, with major donor schemes sometimes being hidden within more general fundraising totals. Our experience also suggests that the decision to publish or not can vary from year to year, with some organisations varying in their policy on data publication over time.

What does this mean for Phi?

Combining numbers of organisations together with the likelihood of finding information gives us a rough proxy of how likely each type of organisation is to be represented on Phi. The table below therefore suggests that arts/culture organisations and universities are the most likely to have donation data on Phi.

Note that this does not, however, take account of the number of donors listed for each organisation – which can vary considerably from many hundreds to only a handful.


Methodological Notes:

  • Activity Types have been allocated based on what might be considered to be the main activity of each organisation. In many cases this will therefore ignore other activities which they also undertake
  • Probabilities of finding donation data for charities have been calculated based on the number of years for which data/no data have been found in each case – up to a maximum of six years per charity
  • Representation Ranking is based on the number of charities of each major Activity Type researched (largest number = largest score)
  • Data Availability Ranking is based on the data availability probabilities (highest probability = highest score)
  • Overall score = Representation Ranking x Data Availability Ranking
  • Note that grant-making trusts have also been researched as a source of donation information for Phi – they are not included within this analysis as the availability of specific donation information from these organisations is considerably higher
  • Next section: Profile

Profile: The Helen Hamlyn Trust

Founded in the year 1984, this is the personal foundation of Helen Hamlyn, a designer and philanthropist who is the widow of the late Paul Hamlyn, a German born British publisher.

Born in London in 1934, Helen completed her education at the Royal College of Arts and graduated as a fashion designer. At 21, she became head designer for Cresta Silks, a position she held for 15 years, and she was also a designer for department store Debenhams.

While still just 21 years old she met her first husband, an architect, and also began her career as an interior designer. She started by designing the couple’s own apartment and in her words ‘never really stopped’. Years later in 2006, she would go on to restore the 13th century Château de Bagnols, and was appointed as a Chevalier d’Ordre des Arts et Lettres by the French government for her work.

Her second husband, Paul Hamyln, was a successful businessman who founded two major UK publishing houses: the Paul Hamlyn Group and the Octopus Publishing Group. The Paul Hamlyn Group was sold in 1964 for £2.25m, and the Octopus Publishing Group was also sold in 1987 for £530m.

He also established his own charitable trust, The Paul Hamlyn Foundation in 1972, with the intention of supporting disabled and underprivileged people and the arts. The same year the Octopus Publishing Group was sold, He created the Helen Hamlyn Trust as a gift to Helen for her 50th birthday. He died in 2001.

Today, the trust sponsors numerous arts and education projects in Britain and abroad, as well as a centre for robotic surgery at Imperial College.

For the financial year ending 31st of March 2013, the trust reported an income of £4,395,942 and an expenditure of £3,937,388. Factary Phi holds 137 records of donations made to various organisations since 2006 worth a minimum of £11,578,770.

According to Phi, the average size of donations made by the trust is £107,210 and the largest proportion of these donations have been made to causes associated with Arts/Culture (52), followed by Education/Training (34), Health (13), Heritage (11), Children/Youth (6), Environment (5), Elderly (4), International Development and Welfare (2) and Sport, Disability, Rights/Law/Conflict and Religious Activities (1)

The Trustees

Professor Deborah Swallow

Professor Deborah Swallow has been a Director of the Courtauld Institute of Art since 2004. Before holding this position, she was firstly the keeper of the Asian department for the Cambridge University Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology and also as a director of collections at the Victoria and Albert Museum.

Brendan Cahill

Brendan Cahill is a Director of the Institute of International Humanitarian Affairs at Fordham University in Greater New York. He is an executive Director of the Center for International Humanitarian Cooperation. Before this, he was an editor of the Community Outlook and also Vice President of the William Doyle Galleries. He is also a Director of the KMC Foundation in New York.

Dr Kate Gavron

Dr Kate Gavron is an academic and publisher who is currently Chair of poetry publisher the Carcanet Press and on the board of Folio Holdings. She holds a PHD on the Bangladeshi community of East London. She has published a book on this subject called The New East End, and she is also a Trustee of Carcanet New Press Ltd.

Dr Shobita Punja

Dr Shobita Punja is an art historian and former Chief Executive Officer of the National Culture Fund. She is also a Trustee of the Sanskriti Foundation.

Margaret O’Rorke

Margaret O’Rorke is a potter and ceramic artist. She studied as a painter at Chelsea School of Art and also at the Camberwell College of Arts.

Next section: News

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.