Fondation Botnar was established in 2003 with a primary focus on furthering the Botnar family legacy through grants funding of multiple projects. This was solely managed by the board of trustees.
In 2017 the board appointed a CEO with the purpose of setting up a management team and defining a strategic focus. The aim was to move the foundation away from conventional grantmaking to focus on developing new enterprise-based models that help deliver lasting impact which is both sustainable and scalable.
From 2018, the foundation adopted a new ‘start-up’ entrepreneurial approach and strategy, which sets out a clear roadmap to achieve its vision. The foundation also remains true to its humble family roots by keeping the Botnar family name, maintaining the Botnar family’s philanthropic legacy and by continuing a number of targeted legacy investments.
The new strategic purpose allows the foundation to be truly focussed in investing for impact - aiming to be collaborative and innovative in how they seek to meet the most difficult challenges facing children. They will achieve this by putting research at the forefront of all their work, establishing learning hubs in key countries to test potential scalable solutions, and by funding research that puts digital innovation at the heart of improving children’s wellbeing in urban spaces. Learning and evaluation will underpin their ability to successfully contribute to their vision. As they learn from their research and implementation they can adapt their strategy to ensure maximum impact moving forward.
Since 2015 Fondation Botnar has benefited from a significant boost to its capital base resulting in greater funding potential. In 2016, the foundation board committed to building organisational capacity to support the implementation of its mandate, including appointing a CEO and a dedicated team to effectively manage the foundation’s future strategic direction.
The Fondation Botnar assets of CHF 3.3 billion (as of December 2018) are invested according to leading principles of sustainable institutional asset management.
Fondation Botnar is a member of SwissFoundations, the association of grant-making foundations in Switzerland. They commit to best practice governance in line with the principles and recommendations of the Swiss Foundation Code. Their accounting follows the guidelines of Swiss GAAP FER 21 for philanthropic social non-profit-organisations. Their activities are supervised by the Supervisory Authority for Foundations, Swiss Federal Department of Home Affairs.See more