Philanthropy is a continual Christmas

By ILS World

Philanthropist Andrew Carnegie said: "To try to make the world in some way better than you found it is to have a noble motive in life."

Through meticulous planning the self-made steel tycoon's charitable contributions exceeded $350 million. He helped build more than 2,800 libraries all over the world and his legacy through various trusts is still giving more than 100 years after his death in 1919.

Philanthropy involves giving to worthy causes on a large scale - it is more than just making a donation. It is an undertaking by an individual, family or an organisation based on a selfless desire to improve human welfare. It dates back to the Greek philosopher Plato, who in 347 BC instructed his nephew to use the proceeds of the family farm to fund a student academy.

More recently the links between entrepreneurship and philanthropy have grown stronger with many inspiring illustrations which combine the two.

In 2010 40 of America's wealthiest people joined together in a commitment to give the majority of their wealth to address some of society's most pressing problems. Created by Bill Gates, Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett the Giving Pledge came to life following a series of conversations with philanthropists about how they could collectively set a new standard of generosity. Today the Giving Pledge includes more than 200 of the world's wealthiest individuals, couples and families, ranging in age from their 30s to their 90s. Globally they represent 23 countries including Brazil, India, Israel, Hong Kong, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Carnegie's planning and foresight is a model followed by many others who have structured their affairs to ensure successful philanthropic outcomes. The desire to help or "give back" is rarely enough with individuals engaging and forming an in-depth understanding of the projects they have chosen to support. In our experience undertakings are run with the same rigour as those applied to family businesses with a clear vision and goals.

There are a number of different options to drive a philanthropic strategy and ILS World has found the entrepreneurs we work with fuse together many different combinations including social impact investing, donating a percentage of the sale of a particular item to support a named cause as well as those who establish trusts and foundations.

ILS World has been advising private clients for nearly 30 years and has a great deal of experience in establishing trusts and foundations in key jurisdictions. Trusts may be established as stand-alone solutions or as part of a larger structure. Our comprehensive service includes helping to draft the trust deed, providing a corporate or individual trustee, establishing related corporate structures, maintaining trust accounts, arranging banking facilities and administration. Where necessary we liaise with specialist lawyers to ensure our drafting is bespoke and precise.

The private client team also establish and administer foundations in a number of jurisdictions. They are a robust and popular vehicle for philanthropic purposes and our foundation services include planning and structuring the foundation, preparing the foundation charter, providing council members and where appropriate we can act as registered agent together with establishing bank accounts, administration and accounting.

Whichever philanthropic structure is favoured the team also assists with obtaining charitable status if appropriate.

As philanthropy is driven by an individual's passion, values and concerns solutions are bespoke and the ILS World structuring team is practiced in partnering and working in collaboration with external accredited experts and acknowledged industry professionals to ensure we provide our clients with the best service.

Our services include:

  • Establishing and administering a philanthropic structure
  • Acting as a registered agent
  • Acting as a trustee
  • Providing council members
  • Liaising with co-founders to achieve a consistent mission and message
  • Liaising with external advisers and auditors
  • Obtaining charitable status
  • Maintaining financial accounts
  • Attending meetings
  • Communicating with regulators as and when required
  • Administration.

ILS World is a global provider of independent fiduciary services who successfully advise private clients including individuals, trustees and family offices.

We act in the long term interests of our clients and pay careful attention to the quality and personal service we deliver.

Our private client team works hard to create long-term relationships and provide the highest level of service. We do this by being approachable, flexible and pragmatic. We offer regular face-to-face meetings as required and provide direct contact with a senior member of the team. Staff have diverse backgrounds, skills and interests and their professional experience together with their "can-do" attitude means they understand that wealth and business is inextricably linked.

Our private clients often require an international strategy and as a global business with offices in a number of key jurisdictions we are well placed to provide a cohesive service. Our network includes

offices in:

  • British Virgin Islands
  • Dubai
  • Hong Kong
  • Isle of Man
  • London
  • Portugal.

For further information please email

Please note: ILS World does not offer tax advice and would therefore recommend you obtain your own tax advice. If you require an introduction to a tax adviser we would be happy to assist.


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