The Most Charitable Fortune 500 Companies

Recently, the Chronicle of Philanthropy has compiled a comprehensive list of Fortune 500 companies that have donated the most amount of funds to charities and various philanthropic causes last year.

Goldman, the fourth biggest corporate donor of 2015, is also guiding the market with regard to economic growth. According to a report conducted by the Chronicle of Philanthropy, the corporate giant gave $276.4 million in cash in 2015. This donated amount is 10% more than was the firm had given the previous year.

To compare, in 2014, the California based biotech company named Gilead Sciences gave the most monetary contributions. According to various reports, Gilead Sciences had contributed over $446.7 million to a plethora of causes. The other companies in the top five were not industry specific, with brands ranging from retail to international petroleum corporations. Within the top five in 2014 consisted of companies such as Walmart totaling $301 million, totaling $281.2 million, and ExxonMobil with $268 million.

Similar to Goldman Sachs, various other Fortune 500 corporations have reported that philanthropy and social responsibility programs helped their business expand and flourish in various internal areas. Specifically, these areas include employee satisfaction, increasing overall customer loyalty, and reducing issues or problems that could potentially become liabilities. The prime example of this particular success story is Walmart.

Walmart’s CEO, Douglas McMillon has guided the creation of the company’s charitable arm, the Walmart Foundation. The Walmart Foundation has unveiled a $100 million pledge to make retail jobs more attractive industry-wide by increasing wages and generating more flexible schedules for their employees across the board.

“We want to accelerate mobility of frontline retail workers not only within Walmart but in retail as a whole, and really elevate the role that retail can play in workforce in America and more broadly,” says Kathleen McLaughlin, who serves as both chief sustainability officer and president of the Walmart Foundation.

While some individuals may prefer to donate time or funds from an altruistic standpoint, it is still important to note that corporate giving as a percentage of pre-tax profits is slowly declining.  

Check out the full list of The 20 Most Generous Companies of the Fortune 500 to see more about the non-profits and charities that benefited from $3.5 billion in donations last year.