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Philanthropic Venture Capital Initiative

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A Lasting Investment in Fontbonne

Fontbonne University seeks investment partners committed to education of tomorrow’s workforce. Investors will join Fontbonne’s new Philanthropic Venture Capital Initiative. The purpose of this initiative is solely for the formation, expansion and enhancement of new or existing academic programs.

This initiative aligns with our 2016-2021 strategic plan for the university. Fontbonne has a goal to ensure the quality and viability of our academic programs. As such, the university will be robust in fully integrating planning and infrastructure and budgeting.  We will be focused on the differentiation of academic programs, highlighting experiential learning and fulfillment of the Fontbonne Mission.

Fontbonne is seeking partners to invest contributions of $25,000 and more to build our Philanthropic Venture Capital fund.

For more information, please contact Jeff Brown Director of Philanthropy, at or (314) 719-3607

The Initiative

We are looking for partners — investors committed to the education of tomorrow’s workforce — who will join Fontbonne University’s new Philanthropic Venture Capital Initiative.

The purpose of this fund will be solely for the formation, expansion and enhancement of new or existing academic programs.

Examples might include:

  • A certificate program in “parish administration” that would fit in well with our CSJ heritage.
  • An “arts administration” certificate to enhance the leadership of a studio, gallery or theatre.
  • A full bachelor’s or master’s degree in the realm of technology, such as cyber security and computer science, or an innovative business degree.

The Details

Launching a new program can require an initial investment ranging from $25,000 for certificate programs and seminars to more than $250,000 for degree-granting programs.

Cost factors involving new programs include:

  • Attracting and sustaining expert faculty (sometimes a year or two before students are enrolled in the program).
  • Potential lab, studio, classroom or other facility improvements.
  • Announcements and marketing.

Typically, it can take two to three years for a new program to generate positive cash flow. It is when a program reaches profitability that we will then reimburse the start-up fund so that monies are available for additional programs in the pipeline. These funds would be held in a restricted account, and investors would receive an annual accounting of results.

The Proposal

Fontbonne University serves a vital role in the St. Louis region. Nearly 70 percent of our graduates live and work in the metropolitan area, providing a valuable and stable resource to businesses and the community.

These students choose Fontbonne because of the high-quality programs offered in a values-based, student-centered environment. We developed this venture capital initiative to help ensure that we have the resources available to meet the changing educational needs and interests of today’s — and tomorrow’s — college students.

We thank you for your time in considering this request. We need the vision and support of donors who embrace our mission. Through this initiative, together we can meet your philanthropic objectives.

Will you join us in this investment opportunity?

For more information, please contact Jeff Brown Director of Philanthropy, at or (314) 719-3607


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