Thursday, September 6

Is NOZA about to launch a free foundation grant research database today?

Don't Tell the Donor received a tip that NOZA, Inc. is set to launch a free private beta of a new foundation grant research database at the CARA Conference in Orange County, CA later today.

If true, the announcement is sure to send shockwaves through the multi-million dollar industry that currently charges nonprofits to research potential foundations who may (or may not) be interested in reviewing grant applications. Why, you ask?

Several weeks ago Waddy Thompson had an article in the Nonprofit Times profiling the differences between five different products:

* The Foundation Center's Foundation Directory Online
* FoundationSearch
* GuideStar's Grant Explorer
* GrantStation
* Prospect Research Online (aka PRO Platinum)
Toward the end of the article he offers this as part of his conclusion, "With fees ranging from $19.95 for one month to nearly $2,500 for a year (with no monthly option), price definitely becomes an issue." In addition to the financial costs, I know many fundraisers who spend lots of time traveling in order to research foundations.

In fact, one industry insider told me that nonprofits collective probably spend well over $20 million a year for foundation research. How will the Foundation Center and other nonprofits react when this revenue stream is threatened? What will this mean for the for-profit businesses of Metasoft and the Chronicle of Philanthropy's grant lookup product?

If fundraisers could find close to one million grant records when the free foundation database launches at - that certainly will be a game changer.


Anonymous said...

This wouldn't be the first time NOZA has tried to rock the boat by moving into an "established" nonprofit space and challenging the old vendors who do it another way.

Their major donor prospect look-up challenged wealth engine and their co-op database challenges others like Target... the big hurdle for them seems to be marketing and outreach to break into the nonprofit market.

Aren't these guys relatively new to the sector?

Mike H. said...

There has to be some sort of catch "fundraiser." If this is true I bet it's only available for a short time OR they will make it available only if you purchase other products.

Anonymous said...

What the hell is the CARA Conference?

a fundraiser said...

The Annual CARA Conference :
Solving the Puzzle: Prospect Research-Basics to Best Practices
The Westin South Coast Plaza
Costa Mesa, California
September 6 and 7, 2007

Gayle said...

Thanks for the tip.

I suspect you are correct, for any time a new business enters an established market and undercuts the going rates, a shake up will soon follow. Am reminded how online classified ads have all but replaced print ads, resulting in reduced revenues for newspapers, resulting in wholesale layoffs of journalists all across the country, etc., etc.

Likewise if the Foundation Center has its subscription revenue base drastically cut, because of new competition, would it still be able to provide free fundraising training, trained librarians and resource rooms across the country?

Or perhaps the effect will be more democratic access to donor research? Today Amazon can practically provide anyone with an Internet connection in the world any book currently in circulation (and a few that aren't). What would be the impact if donor research currently available to only a few well staffed and funded nonprofits, was available to every NGO around the globe? How would that change the way we fundraise?

Don't know. Only time will tell.

Anonymous said...

did they?

Anonymous said...

As a follow up to the initial post and comments, NOZA's new free foundation search is now live. It's pretty slick. There's no catch (as some predicted there might be). In fact, you don't even have to register...I just downloaded a list of foundation prospects into excel.

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