GivingLarge Media Release

Australia’s top corporate donors named in new GivingLarge Report.

Australia’s most generous companies have been revealed in a new report. The inaugural GivingLarge Report has found a staggering $867 million was invested in community causes by 39 companies in the 2016/17 financial year.

The GivingLarge Report shines a light on Australia’s most philanthropic corporations. It is the first report of its kind, providing comprehensive analysis of community investments made by Australia’s top 50 publicly listed companies.

The report reveals Wesfarmers and CSL are leading the way with the highest investments, including cash donations, volunteering time and gifts in kind.

The GivingLarge Report analyses percentage contributions of company profits or earnings to rank organisations, noting the importance of comparing companies by how they report their income.

When ranking companies by their percentage contribution of pre-tax profit, Wesfarmers tops the list. The conglomerate behind Coles, Bunnings, Kmart and Target donating $72 million or 2.1 per cent of its pre-tax profit. The average corporate contribution is 0.59 per cent of pre-tax profit.

Most of Wesfarmer’s investments were funnelled towards medical research, Indigenous programs, education initiatives and arts programs.

Biotechnology giant CSL leads the pack when looking at the percentage of earnings with $52 million in donations globally, which equates to 1.7 per cent of its earnings. The average corporate contribution is 0.57% of earnings.

Most of these funds were directed to biomedical research, medical education and support groups, and emergency relief.

Top 10 corporate donors by per cent of pre-tax profit (Roll 3 year, from 26 companies):

  1. Wesfarmers
  2. CSL
  3. Woolworths
  4. IAG
  5. Stockland
  6. GPT Group
  7. Macquarie
  8. QBE Insurance
  9. Suncorp
  10. AMP

Top 10 corporate donors by earnings (EBITDA) (Roll 3 year, from 22 companies):

  1. CSL
  2. Wesfarmers
  3. Oil Search
  4. Rio Tinto
  5. South32
  6. BHP Billiton
  7. Woolworths
  8. Woodside
  9. Origin
  10. Orica

Top 10 corporate donors by $:

  1. Rio Tinto
  2. BHP Billiton
  3. Wesfarmers
  4. CSL
  5. CBA
  6. Westpac
  7. Woolworths
  8. NAB
  9. Woodside
  10. ANZ

Sector Leaders by %  contribution:

  1. Finance                             IAG
  2. Materials                          RIO TINTO
  3. Telecoms (n=1)                TELSTRA
  4. Industrial                          BRAMBLES
  5. Consumer                        WESFARMERS
  6. Health Care                      CSL
  7. Info Tech (n=1)                COMPUTERSHARE
  8. Real Estate                       STOCKLAND
  9. Energy                             OIL SEARCH
  10. Utilities (n=2)                  AGL

Further findings from the GivingLarge Report show:

  • The top nine companies contributed 74 per cent of the $867 million
  • Three sectors were responsible for the lion’s share of corporate giving. The materials, finance and consumer sectors made up 76 per cent of the total donation.
  • The materials sectors contributed the largest total figure at $359 million, representing 42 per cent of the total sum donated by the ASX50 companies.

The GivingLarge report is an initiative of Strive Philanthropy, a new organisation dedicated to highlighting the remarkable philanthropic efforts of corporate Australia within our community. By showcasing corporate generosity through focused research and public awareness efforts, Strive aims to drive valued social change and increased community contributions.

Strive Philanthropy founder Jarrod Miles said the yearly report will hopefully stimulate an environment of healthy philanthropic competition.

“From the boardroom to the battler, from the suits to the streets – there is a clear and growing need and responsibility for the companies around us to give back to the communities they operate in,” he says.

“Distinct from other corporate social rankings, the GivingLarge Report examines publicly available reports to ensure a robust sample not restricted by the need for a membership or survey completion. This approach creates a best practice environment that looks to not only increase corporate contributions, but also the public disclosure of those contributions.”

“Australia’s interest in corporate generosity is certainly on the rise, and if we are smart about it, our growing interest in this area may just help to drive up total giving to those who need it.”

Over time Strive Philanthropy hopes to expand its efforts to include a broader group of companies.

“The companies included in this report should be acknowledged, congratulated and encouraged to continue their giving and reporting”, says Sarah Davies, CEO of Philanthropy Australia.

“Everyone benefits. We know how influential responsible, community and social investment and partnership is on positive employee attraction and retention, social license to operate and on broader customer, market and supplier engagement.  The GivingLarge Report helps shine a light on good practice and inspires others to follow suit.”

The report collates the donation statistics of the ASX50 companies by sector and reviews key community investment parameters. It uses global standards developed by the London Benchmarking Group and the Global Reporting Initiative, also assessing adherence and assurance to these standards.

It does not take into account political donations, employee donations or commercial sponsorships.

View Full Report Here


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