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Companies gave £134m in the financial year 2010/11, according to Arts and Business, which compiled the figures.
That is £10m down on the previous year and the lowest since 2003/4.
But overall investment in the arts, including money from private donors and trusts and foundations, rose by £28.5m to £686m, Arts and Business said.
The charity, which aims to connect cultural organisations with donors, said individuals gave £382m in 2010/11, up £23m on the previous year.
Investment from trusts and foundations rose from £155m to £170m.
The government has launched a major drive to increase private funding for the arts and 2011 was billed as the "year of corporate giving".
Speaking to BBC Radio 4's Today programme, culture secretary Jeremy Hunt said the overall rise in philanthropy had been a success.
"I don't regret for one second the effort [arts minister] Ed Vaizey and myself have put into boosting business support for the arts," he added.
"I think it would have fallen a lot further if we hadn't put in the effort that we have."
Source: Arts and Business
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