Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey pledges $1 billion to combat COVID-19

Hemani Sheth Mumbai | Updated on April 08, 2020 Published on April 08, 2020

File Photo of Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey.   -  Reuters

This happens to be the largest donation pledged by a private individual in the fight against coronavirus

Jack Dorsey, the CEO of social media giant Twitter and digital payments platform Square on Tuesday said that he will donate $1 billion to charities working towards combatting the global COVID-19 pandemic.

The donation makes it the largest amount pledged by a private individual in the fight against the global coronavirus pandemic.

“I’m moving $1B of my Square equity (~28% of my wealth) to #startsmall LLC to fund global COVID-19 relief. After we disarm this pandemic, the focus will shift to girl’s health and education, and UBI. It will operate transparently, all flows tracked here,” Dorsey wrote on Twitter.

The Twitter CEO will pull the amount from his start-up Square as he owns a majority of the company as compared to his stake in Twitter.

Jack Dorsey’s take

“Why pull just from Square and not Twitter? Simply: I own a lot more Square. And I’ll need to pace the sales over some time. The impact this money will have should benefit both companies over the long-term because it’s helping the people we want to serve,” he said.

Dorsey also shared a Google Sheet to keep track of where the amount has been spent and the charities that he has donated the amount towards in the spirit of transparency.

According to the document, $100,000 has been given so far to an organization cofounded by Laurene Powell Jobs and Leonardo DeCaprio, the America’s Food Fund.

“Why is #startsmall a LLC? This segments and dedicates my shares to these causes, and provides flexibility. Grants will be made from Start Small Foundation or the LLC directly based on the beneficiary org. All transfers, sales, and grants will be made public in tracking sheet,” Dorsey wrote on the micro-blogging platform.

“Why the transparency? It’s important to show my work so I and others can learn. I’ve discovered and funded ($40mm) many orgs with proven impact and efficiency in the past, mostly anonymously. Going forward, all grants will be public. Suggestions welcome. Drop your cash app,” he added.

The charity will keep functioning even after the impact of the pandemic has been health with. The money will then be passed on to charities looking after ‘girl’s health and education.’

“Why UBI and girl’s health and education? I believe they represent the best long-term solutions to the existential problems facing the world. UBI is a great idea needing experimentation. Girl’s health and education is critical to balance,” Dorsey explained.

The Twitter CEO’s pledge is the largest amount donated by an individual. Major donations so far have been made by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation who’ve pledged $100 million, less than 1 per cent of their fortune.

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Published on April 08, 2020
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