Tell us more – what is mavia?

mavia is a social finance and philanthropy advisory firm based in Zurich.

We strive to increase positive impact for our clients and their beneficiaries by creating transparency and bridging the gap between people wanting to engage in positive change and adequate, high quality investment and philanthropy opportunities for impact.

We offer our clients independent, personal and professional advice in strategic philanthropy by creating strong and trusted relationships with them as well as with our network partners. In this way we ensure consistent mission alignment from planning the whole way through to implementation of a personal philanthropy journey.

Who is the typical mavia client?

There is no such thing as “the typical mavia client”. Our clients are as diverse as people can be – each one with different motivations, values and needs. We deliberately chose to have a diverse advisory board, to represent that kind of individuality with different cultures, religions, interests and background. What our clients have in common though, is that they are all personalities looking for opportunities to make a real difference through philanthropy or social investments. They all have a “Passion for Impact” that drives their decisions and engagements.

Can you give an example of a mavia engagement?

One of our clients is a medium size foundation based in Switzerland. The foundation supports projects in Switzerland through traditional grant giving according to its mission and thematic focus. Together we are working out a strategy on how to include impact investing in the existing activities. This decision influences a foundation on different levels, from service offering, to internal know-how but also culture. It is very important to ensure that change is introduced gradually and in line with the foundation’s mission. The first impact investment with our client is planned in the next 12 months; a great opportunity to learn together and go new and innovative ways.

Another example is an institutional client in the financial services industry. Our client is interested in adding philanthropy to the existing service offering, for reasons of client retention, business development and corporate responsibility. We advised to base decisions regarding additional services on insights from a client survey instead of setting something up and risking to miss the target. In this case we collaborate with a partner, who is specialized in conducting surveys to measure and evaluate “soft” factors. This way the client has a meaningful data set as a basis for his decisions about additional products and services, which make sense to be set up in the future.

Last but not least we are working with a wealthy private client who is not new to charity but rather new to strategic philanthropy and wants to include the next generation in this process. As we work on the Philanthropy Canvas, an easy and straight forward working tool developed by mavia and inspired by BusinessModelGeneration.com, we talk about basic values and interests that drive many money related decisions. This is a great opportunity to understand the other one’s views and needs. The outcome here is not necessarily family philanthropy, it can be of course, but it is also possible to have separate engagements and to exchange experiences and learning within the family on a regular basis. One of our clients once said: “I don’t see the need for everybody in the family to be involved in everything. Because not everybody has the same skills and time and quite frankly you can end up making things far too complicated when you have to consider everybody’s interests, commitment and agenda.”

What makes mavia different?

We give honest and direct advice at any time. In everything we do we try to foster clarity and simplify rather than making things more complicated. We believe that this leads to more joy and fulfillment for our clients, who then again choose to engage in philanthropy for the long term and this increases positive impact.

For us it’s about transforming good intention into a meaningful journey for our clients and to be part of the success story of philanthropy. A story of positive change and growth, that leaves us with a smile on our faces.

Enjoy your impact journey and engage!

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