ERSTE Foundation is the main shareholder of Erste Group, one of the largest financial services providers in Central and South Eastern Europe, owning a direct stake of 11.05 % and heading a shareholder group acting in kind with 29.17 % of shares. ERSTE Foundation invests its dividend revenue in the development of societies in Austria, Central and South Eastern Europe: it supports social participation and civil-society engagement, it brings people together and disseminates knowledge of the recent history of this region that has been undergoing dramatic change since 1989.
The funds used by ERSTE Foundation for project work can be classified as either funding of project partners, i.e., payments to non-profit organisations for the implementation of projects or direct project expenses, i.e., costs incurred by ERSTE Foundation for the research, development and implementation of projects to enable civil society, the inclusion of socially disadvantaged groups, and contemporary and socially engaged art. In 2006, ERSTE Foundation provided the nominal capital for the founding of Zweite Sparkasse, the bank for the unbankable, and in 2008/2009 of good.bee, an initiative to overcome financial exclusion. These were extraordinary expenditures, which are not incurred on a regular basis. The charts below give you more information on how ERSTE Foundation uses its funds for project work.
With the exception of 2006, when a substantial part of total expenditure was invested in the establishment of Zweite Sparkasse, the funding of project partners made up for the vast majority of total expenditure.
For the whole period 2005-2015, about 75 % of ERSTE Foundation’s funds were paid to non-profit organisations for the implementation of projects, while direct project expenses accounted for about 15 % of total expenditure. In total, start-up financing for Zweite Sparkasse and good.bee made up for about 10 % of total expenditure in the period 2005-2015.
ERSTE Foundation’s expenditure for project work in the period 2005-2015 (calculated as total expenditure less the founding costs of Zweite Sparkasse and good.bee) amounted to a total of € 74.6 million. This chart shows the share of ERSTE Foundation’s core topices in total funding and direct project expenses in this period.
Between 2005 and 2015, a total of 1309 projects was approved. Out of that, 199 projects were the results of calls for application.
* Includes voting rights of ERSTE Foundation, savings banks, savings bank foundations, Wiener Städtische Wechselseitige Versicherungsverein and of 9.9 % shares of CaixaBank.