Benefunder Launches Charitable Innovation Fund to Connect Donors With Top Researchers

New High-Impact Philanthropic Product Gives Savvy Advisors an ‘Edge’

The rising demand for high impact philanthropy is prompting many wealth management firms to look for new and innovative ways to engage donors.

Leading this trend is San Diego-based Benefunder, an organization that works with wealth management firms to connect donors with top researchers across the country. Benefunder has launched its one-of-a-kind Charitable Innovation Fund , which is a purpose-driven, hosted Donor Advised Fund or ‘DAF.’ This means that advisors can maintain and grow assets under management, while introducing a new value added service that allows their clients to have greater impact in their giving.

“Through Benefunder, donors become engaged philanthropists who are making personalized decisions in their charitable giving,” said Christian Braemer, Cofounder and CEO of Benefunder. “By directly funding researchers, donors are assured maximum impact for every dollar they give, instead of just writing a blank check to a charity and never knowing where that money is actually going.”

Benefunder’s Charitable Innovation Fund enables philanthropists to create and name a tax deductible fund, establish and implement a planned giving strategy, build a personalized portfolio of top researchers according to their profile, and track progress and milestones along the way. Through this unique fund, Benefunder facilitates a significantly lower overhead structure, greater access, and unparalleled transparency. Click here for a sample giving fund proposal.

The Benefunder DAF works for advisors to target clients with major wealth events as a means of engaging the next generation of wealth, and to attract new clients that are charitably inclined. The fund is a viable solution as a standalone charitable vehicle, as a cost effective giving arm for a private foundation, and is even ideal for companies looking to further their social responsibility interests in an effective way.

According to a U.S. Trust study, 98 percent of high net worth clients give, yet only 40 percent are happy with their giving. Consider this: In 2013, $93 billion in charitable donations left the top 10 wealth management firms, providing advisors an untapped opportunity to retain and grow new assets. In the meantime, DAF account contributions in 2013 reached an all-time high, totaling $17.28 billion. Meanwhile, research funding in the United States has decreased by as much as 20% over the past decade, during which time other countries like South Korea and China have significantly increased funding, up to 90 %, according to

Benefunder’s mission is to reduce the innovation deficit, which is centered around funding research and moving it to the market. The U.S. is an innovation driven economy; in fact, since WWII, academic research has accounted for roughly half of all new wealth creation. Inventions like internet protocol, MRI, countless drugs, touchscreens, genome mapping, to name a few, were born in this nation’s Ivory Towers. Philanthropists have a powerful opportunity to fund what matters to them while helping to push novel innovations like these to the masses.

“Now is the time for goals-driven philanthropy to incorporate diversification, asset allocation, and planned giving, creating a new and much needed dynamic in this space.” Braemer said. “Research needs to be in everyone’s funding portfolio because it affects every possible philanthropic cause. Our philanthropic platform enables new ways for advisors to engage donors by allowing them to effect positive, social change, while keeping assets under their management.”


About Benefunder

Benefunder is a unique hybrid organization -- part foundation and part tech startup -- that has created a new funding channel for research and innovation while providing philanthropists with a smarter and more meaningful way to give. Through our Charitable Innovation Fund, we connect donors with the nation’s top researchers across all fields of study, including life sciences, new technologies, the environment and the arts and humanities. Benefunder has the largest active researcher portal in the United States, with more than 600 top researchers who are working on breakthrough treatments and solutions that will greatly impact and benefit society.  More information at Watch the Benefunder video here.