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Customer success story

Scaling the fundraising team’s capacity for due diligence at ClientEarth

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“Xapien has enabled us to confidently launch our new fundraising strategy that previously would have been considered too high-risk.”

Camilla Fitzgerald, Philanthropy Manager, ClientEarth


ClientEarth is a global charity which litigates against organisations doing harm to the environment. The philanthropy team had received approval to launch a new corporate fundraising strategy. However, partnering with the wrong corporation is ClientEarth’s most significant reputational risk, so they needed to conduct stringent due diligence. 

The challenge

ClientEarth didn’t have a single dedicated prospect researcher in the team whose job it was to conduct this due diligence and provide reports to fundraisers. They needed a tool that could be put straight into the hands of fundraisers. This tool needed to conduct in-depth research, particularly around a corporation’s links to environmental concerns, whether directly or indirectly through third parties such as the company owners and directors, as well as their supply chain. If done manually, this would have taken hours for each due diligence report, significantly slowing down the fundraising process.

Where Xapien steps in

Xapien is an AI tool that performs open-source research on individuals and entities in minutes. The platform requires no training, so fundraisers can use it straight out of the box. Xapien’s summarisation capability generates clear summaries that serve as a starting point for their research. The 'Ask Xapien' feature then lets them ask specific questions tailored to their due diligence framework. But what's most important is the Risk Inspector, where they can see the number of risks associated with the entity — such as ESG and fraud— that require further exploration. By automating the research and analysis, fundraisers can deepen their understanding of ClientEarth’s institutional risks and make informed onward decisions.

The outcome

Xapien has significantly grown the fundraising team’s capacity, enabling them to generate even the most complex research reports in under 15 minutes. They now use Xapien for corporate due diligence to identify both direct and indirect risks around a corporation’s business model, finances, and ESG policies. With Xapien handling the research, fundraisers can independently generate prospect profiles and initiate outreach much quicker. By doing the due diligence upfront, fundraisers can focus on suitable prospects and significantly shorten the time between stewardship and gift acceptance.

Cambridge Case Study illustrations-25

“There was a clear business case for investing in Xapien.”

Camilla Fitzgerald, Philanthropy Manager, ClientEarth

Shareable with other teams

Since Xapien reports are on the cloud, they can be saved under different folders. This means fundraisers can easily  share reports between colleagues so that others can contribute to the report in the notes section. And when they need to send a report to a senior stakeholder can share the reports directly, and restrict editing access.

Clear audit trail

ClientEarth’s process involves adding their recommendations for next steps in the notes section of a Xapien report. This includes highlighting the most significant risks that the team has identified and addressing indirect ones. Since the reports are time stamped, there’s a clear audit trail for when this due diligence was done.

Upskilling the team

Xapien enables junior staff members, and other staff members who may not be trained, to identify risks that might not be obvious to everyone. Importantly, ClientEarth conducts research in a manner that includes a wide range of sources, instilling trust in the generated results. This empowers them to approach their work more strategically, allowing for greater flexibility and creativity in problem-solving. 

GDPR compliant

A key benefit of Xapien is that it only searches and analyses information from publicly available sources. This is really important for ClientEarth since many AI tools pose significant GDPR risks, which they wanted to avoid. The fact that Xapien is all open-source was a major tick for ClientEarth.

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