AcademicWorks Acquired by Blackbaud

Scholarship management platform becomes part of the world’s leading cloud software company powering social good

Austin, T.X. (April 3, 2017) —AcademicWorks, the market leader in scholarship management for higher education, K-12, foundations and grant-making institutions, today announced that it has been acquired by Blackbaud (NASDAQ: BLKB), the world’s leading cloud software company powering social good.

Since its founding in Austin in 2010, AcademicWorks has emerged as the largest provider of scholarship management solutions in the world. The company’s cloud scholarship management platform enables students to apply for all awards at an institution using one intuitive and streamlined process, while providing institutions and foundations with improved awarding, reporting, compliance, communication and stewardship of those awards.

“From the day we founded AcademicWorks, our goal has been to empower higher education and K-12 institutions, foundations and grant-making institutions with industry leading tools and innovation to manage scholarships,” said Brandon Phipps, CEO of AcademicWorks. “We are thrilled to become a part of Blackbaud, and believe that this new step forward will allow us to do more than ever.

Joe Price, President of AcademicWorks added, “Blackbaud’s sector-leading R&D investments will help to accelerate our pace of innovation and continue to enhance the way we serve institutions, donors and students.”

Blackbaud, known for its best-of- breed products for the philanthropic space, already has a strong presence in the higher education, K-12 and grant-making markets, where it offers solutions for fundraising and advancement programs, donor and alumni relationship management, digital marketing, advocacy, accounting, payments, analytics and grant management. Bringing AcademicWorks’ capabilities to its solution portfolio will allow it to extend its offerings and drive connection between the advancement and scholarship offices.

“With Blackbaud’s focus on offering our customers integrated, complete solutions to further their missions, this partnership is a great step forward,” said Mike Gianoni, President and CEO of Blackbaud. “Making AcademicWorks a part of Blackbaud will allow our customers to increase student access to available scholarship funds, enhance cross-functional visibility throughout the awarding and stewardship process and revolutionize donor communication for schools to help drive the cycle of giving and receiving. It’s another step forward in powering a connected ecosystem of good that builds a better world.”

Blackbaud’s leadership team also highlighted AcademicWorks’ significant experience in developing cloud software, a reputation for excellent customer service, and its proven solution that has quickly emerged as the leader in its space, with over 500 universities, academic institutions and foundations leveraging its cloud platform, making it the world’s leading scholarship management provider.

“Anyone who has ever applied for, awarded, or managed a scholarship has experienced how much opportunity there is to streamline the application, tracking and notification process,” said Tim Hill, President of Blackbaud Higher Education Solutions. “Blackbaud agrees, and that’s why we’re so excited to join forces with AcademicWorks, which is revolutionizing this process for institutions, donors and students. Together, we’ll continue to improve scholarship management, deepen connections between advancement, stewardship and scholarship teams – and, ultimately, to help drive life-changing outcomes for students.”

According to AcademicWorks’ research, on some campuses, as much as 30% of scholarship funds have gone unutilized, and many donors report limited communication and stewardship once scholarships are given. There are tremendous opportunities for technology to support greater effectiveness in the process.

Additionally, this acquisition creates new opportunities to connect donors, grant-making institutions and education institutions to increase effectiveness and stewardship in scholarship management.

In the short term, Blackbaud will continue to sell AcademicWorks as a stand-alone solution. In the future, with AcademicWorks cloud solutions integrated with Blackbaud’s best-in- class higher education and K-12 fundraising, financial management and analytics solutions, higher education and K-12 institutions will be able to streamline critical functions and create a more modern, intuitive experience for students and the administration.

AcademicWorks is headquartered in Austin, Texas. Blackbaud is headquartered in Charleston, South Carolina, with operations around the globe, including in Austin, Texas. This acquisition also represents a positive development for Austin’s tech industry, where AcademicWorks is headquartered and Blackbaud has 300+ staff in a major office, with all AcademicWorks staff, including CEO Brandon Phipps, expected to transition to Blackbaud staff, reporting to Tim Hill, President of Blackbaud Higher Education Solutions.

For more information, visit

About AcademicWorks 

Based in Austin, Texas, AcademicWorks provides the only comprehensive scholarship management solution focused on improving access to education through innovative technology. More than 500 institutions and foundations have revolutionized their scholarship management process with AcademicWorks. For more information, visit

About Blackbaud

Blackbaud (NASDAQ: BLKB) is the world’s leading cloud software company powering social good. Serving the entire social good community—nonprofits, foundations, corporations, education institutions and individual change agents—Blackbaud connects and empowers organizations to increase their impact through software, services, expertise and data intelligence. The Blackbaud portfolio is tailored to the unique needs of vertical markets, with solutions for fundraising and relationship management, digital marketing, advocacy, accounting, payments, analytics, school management, grant management, corporate social responsibility, and volunteerism. Serving the industry for more than three decades, Blackbaud is headquartered in Charleston, South Carolina and has operations in the United States, Australia, Canada, Ireland and the United Kingdom. For more information, visit

AcademicWorks Media Contact

Brooke Grimes

Director of Marketing


Blackbaud Media Contact

Nicole McGougan

Public Relations