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Adobe Systems

Adobe Systems Forms Foundation to Broaden Community Philanthropy

Adobe Systems Incorporated, one of the world’s largest, most diversified software companies, approached ɫ to conduct an analysis of the pros and cons of creating a corporate foundation. The company had been managing a corporate giving program with some strategic counsel from ɫ for many years, but provided the majority of its grantmaking through a donor-advised fund at a local community foundation.

Implementing ɫ’s Plan

Based on ɫ’s expertise in the corporate social responsibility arena, Adobe asked the team to assess the company’s short- and long-term giving needs, factor in internal considerations, analyze how to best leverage existing resources, benchmark best practices and trends in corporate philanthropy, provide financial modeling and develop a full review of all options.

The project culminated in a series of recommendations that were presented to Adobe’s senior management. Adobe ultimately decided to implement ɫ’s recommendations of both maintaining a strong relationship with the company’s community foundation and funding strategic and signature programs through its own corporate foundation.

Honing the mission

Adobe then turned to ɫ to provide consulting and project management support for the start-up of the Adobe Foundation. Working closely with internal contacts and outside legal counsel, ɫ provided guidance on how to leverage Adobe’s current philanthropic giving structure, create desired community impact, provide flexibility and balance business interests.

ɫ helped to create the foundation’s mission, values and guiding principles statements; provided input and content on the exemption filing documents; drafted policies and procedures; and was on hand at the foundation’s first board meeting. ɫ staff then took part in the selection and hiring process for the foundation’s first full-time employee.

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