Partridge Snow & Hahn counsel Elizabeth Manchester and Russell Stein led a workshop at the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network Annual Meeting, titled Weathering the Storm: Considerations for Joint Ventures, Commercial Co-Ventures and Mergers Post COVID-19.
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted almost every business and nonprofit organization. Many experts have written about how nonprofits can handle fundraising during the crisis, suggesting increasing donor engagement, stay the course with capital campaigns, and increase appeals focusing on the urgent need for current support. While some of these strategies may be very effective in the short-term, what about the long-term consequences? What happens in eighteen to twenty-four months from now, when charitable giving has shifted away from your organization’s charitable focus and towards health organizations or nonprofits that focus on diversity, equity and inclusion issues? Recent events could cast the long-term viability of many nonprofit organizations in doubt. In a typical year at least 7% of nonprofits close. One recent report indicated that between 11% and 38% of nonprofits could close due to COVID-19.
To better weather the storm, in addition to traditional fundraising techniques, charitable organizations should consider expanding their fundraising and mission reach by engaging in commercial co-ventures with for-profit entities, joint ventures with nonprofit and for-profit entities, or possibly merging with other nonprofits to assure long-term viability of their charitable purposes. Each one of these options could allow the organization to survive in these uncertain times.
A recording of the full presentation can be viewed here.
Partridge Snow & Hahn’s Charitable & Nonprofit Group are well prepared to advise on related topics.