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032: Broadening the fundraising mix with Andrew Cook, Chief Development & Commercial Officer, Repton

Updated: Jun 13, 2023

This week, I've been joined by Andrew Cook: chief development and commercial officer at Repton, a co-educational independent boarding school for pupils aged 3 to 18 whose history stretches back more than 450 years. I previously spoke to Andrew in the summer of 2020 about generating commercial income for schools. In this episode Andrew and I explore the subject of broadening the fundraising mix.

We begin by discussing Andrew's inspirations for making the move into the independent school sector and how his experience of attending an independent school on a bursary has driven him to utilise his professional experience to create opportunities for others. We then explore what led Andrew to diversify the income streams and broaden the fundraising mix at Repton beyond the traditional fundraising we see in independent schools.

We discuss two different sources of fundraising:

Firstly, I ask Andrew about his experience with events fundraising, including the time and budget events take, how they tap into the competitive nature of independent schools, the benefits of these events beyond just fundraising income and the effects of COVID on events.

Secondly, we discuss how institutional or corporate fundraising is under-utilised in the independent schools sector. We explore how overcoming objections from institutions about donating to the independent school sector and developing an inspirational and comprehensive case for support is key.

Episode Highlights

  • Introducing Andrew Cook (03:51)

  • What inspired Andrew to make the move into the independent school sector (04:36)

  • What led Andrew to diversify income streams (07:00)

  • Events fundraising (08:37)

  • Institutional or corporate fundraising (20:40)

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