Connect with us

World

Facebook’s Zuckerberg takes philanthropy into profit, politics

Legacy Phuket Gazette

Published

 on 

Facebook’s Zuckerberg takes philanthropy into profit, politics | Thaiger

PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

– World news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

Facebook’s Zuckerberg takes philanthropy into profit, politics
Phuket Gazette / Reuters


PHUKET: Mark Zuckerberg, who famously urged his company Facebook Inc (FB.O) to “move fast and break things,” is taking a similar approach to the staid world of philanthropy, indicating his new venture will get directly involved with politics and may even turn a profit.

The project, called the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, is structured as a limited liability company. That means, unlike a traditional charitable or philanthropic foundation, it can make political donations, lobby lawmakers, invest in businesses and recoup any profits from those investments.

“They are not behaving like a traditional philanthropy,” said Leslie Lenkowsky, professor of public affairs and philanthropy at Indiana University. “They are instead trying to achieve philanthropic purposes using a business model.”

Philanthropic foundations such as the one set up by Microsoft Corp (MSFT.O) co-founder Bill Gates typically support non-profit organizations, and they are required to pay out at least 5 percent of their assets in grants each year, a restriction the Zuckerbergs will not face.

Non-profit foundations like Gates’s do not pay tax, whereas the Facebook chief executive’s vehicle would pay tax on any profit generated.

Chan and Zuckerberg announced Tuesday, in a Facebook post disclosing the birth of their daughter Maxima, that 99 percent of the stock they hold in Facebook would go towards the philanthropic project over their lifetime.

At the stock’s current price that stake is worth $45 billion.

Zuckerberg said he will invest up to $1 billion of his shares each year over the next three years into the initiative.

But the limited liability company structure means the couple do not have to sell those shares under the same time restraints they would face if the initiative was structured as a foundation, giving them more flexibility in how long they can hang on to the stock.

Thirty-one year old Zuckerberg, who holds majority voting power in the company, said he would maintain a controlling interest for the “foreseeable future.”

The stock sales, if any, over the next three years are not expected to affect Facebook’s share price because they are well-telegraphed and just a small fraction of both the company’s $300 billion market cap and daily trading volume.

“This sounds like one of those NFL contracts where you hear it’s a $100 million deal over 10 years but in reality only the first three years are guaranteed,” said Vince Rivers, a senior fund manager at Boston-based JOHCM Funds.

The couple has yet to outline specific organizations or causes they will fund but said the initial areas of focus will be curing disease, innovating education and expanding Internet connectivity.

Zuckerberg’s Facebook posts and previous donations provide an indication of where the couple might focus their efforts.

He and Chan made their first high-profile donation in 2010 with $100 million to improve Newark public schools.

The money funded a plan aimed at transforming Newark’s underperforming schools. But it ended up moving thousands of students to new schools while laying off teachers and support staff, and critics said the effort failed to involve the community.

Zuckerberg has acknowledged problems with that effort, and in announcing the new initiative, the couple emphasized the need to work with schools, parent groups and local governments.

“They acknowledged that it takes time to become good at something as difficult as effective philanthropy,” said Phil Buchanan, president of the Center for Effective Philanthropy.

The couple’s recent donations include $20 million to EducationSuperHighway, which helps connect classrooms to the Internet, and a new acute care and trauma centre at San Francisco General Hospital, where 30-year old Chan works as a paediatrician.

They have also said they are passionate about personalized learning, or using technology to help kids aged from five to 18 to learn at different speeds.

Zuckerberg has also been a supporter of immigration reform, including efforts to ease the pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. That stance drew criticism from conservatives, but it is not clear if immigration will be a focus of his new effort.

In addition to the unusual structure of their initiative, Zuckerberg and Chan are distinguished by their youth, a rarity in high-end philanthropy, which they think will give them advantages in what they called the “very long time horizons” of their project.

“By starting at a young age, we hope to see compounding benefits throughout our lives,” Zuckerberg and Chan wrote in a letter announcing the initiative.

— Phuket Gazette Editors

 

Get more from The Thaiger

📱 Download our app on Android or iOS
👋 Have your say on our Thailand forums
🔔 Subscribe to our daily email newsletter
📺 Subscribe / Join YouTube for daily shows
👍 Like/Follow us on Facebook
🐦 FOLLOW us on Twitter
📷 FOLLOW us on Instagram

image

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Thailand46 mins ago

Government says it’s okay to criticise them, if it’s fact based

Thailand2 hours ago

Bangkok volunteer group “Sai Mai Will Survive” overwhelmed with calls

Coronavirus (Covid-19)2 hours ago

Phuket reservations slow down for August

Sponsored2 days ago

Experience Phuket’s Islands with 5 Star Marine

Welcome back to Thailand!

Thaiger is getting behind local businesses for the restart of tourism in Thailand - up to 50% discounts across all advertising packages!

Thailand6 hours ago

Covid UPDATE Saturday: 18,912 infections, news briefs

Drugs12 hours ago

Police nab 600kg heroin drug bust, year’s biggest in Northeast

Koh Samui15 hours ago

Koh Samui unaccustomed to Covid-19, many act in dismay

image
Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Thailand17 hours ago

Bangkok Airways extends flight suspension to August 11

Thailand18 hours ago

7 Jomtien Beach curfew breakers arrested

Thailand18 hours ago

Buri Ram pig stable converted into gambling den: 22 arrests follow

Thailand19 hours ago

“Fake news” banned, Thai media say order infringes on freedoms

Phuket20 hours ago

Precarious Phuket: open internationally, closed domestically

Best of20 hours ago

Top 5 tattoo parlours Bangkok

World20 hours ago

Duterte approves lockdown measures for Manila

Best of20 hours ago

The Best Pizza in Bangkok with Delivery

Thailand20 hours ago

Thailand News Today | worker camp woes, ‘fake news’ crackdown | July 30

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism5 months ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism5 months ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand5 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism5 months ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand6 months ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand6 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand6 months ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Thailand7 months ago

Thailand News Today | Southern floods, Face mask fines, Thai Air Asia woes | January 8

Trending