Nesta among largest new entrants on Charity 250 Index

10 May 2021 News

Nesta, an innovation funder and think tank, is one of the largest new entrants in this year’s Charity Finance 250 Index.

The Index measures the 250 biggest charities by income outside of the top 100, using a three-year average, and is published every year by Civil Society Media.

Nesta is one of 13 new entrants on the Index in 2021, along with charities including Prostate Cancer UK and the Raspberry Pi Foundation.

Rising income

Nesta’s average income over the last three years was £38.5m, after income rose by more than 75% after 2019.

It was founded in 1998 as a non-departmental public body, using a £250m endowment from the National Lottery.

At the time, the Labour government called on it to be “a National Trust for talent”.

Nesta is now wholly independent of government, after registering as a charity in 2012.

New strategy this year

Its appearance on the Index coincides with a new ten-year strategy, published in March.

Nesta said that it will focus on childhood inequality, public health and building a sustainable economy, and that it hopes to “change the lives of millions of people” through its work over the next decade.

Other new entrants

The largest new entrant on the Index is UK Online Giving Foundation, which has an average annual income of £43.7m. Its income has more than quadrupled since 2018.

The third largest new entrant, Discovery, has an average income of £37.8m, and supports people with learning disabilities, autism and challenging behaviour across Somerset. Discovery is a subsidiary of Dimensions, a partnership set up with Somerset Council.

The Raspberry Pi Foundation has an average income of £35m, and is the fourth largest new entrant on the Index. The charity teaches digital skills to young people and helps them use computing and digital technology to develop solutions to social issues.

Entry requirements

A charity must have £27.2m in three-year average annual income in order to appear on the 2021 Index, up 5% from last year.

HCT Group tops the Index, with an income of £72.2m, followed by the Institute of Physics (£71.2m) and Care International UK (£71.4m).

Analysis of the full index is published in May’s Charity Finance magazine.

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