When Mark Zuckerberg announced he would give away 99% of his Facebook shares — currently worth around $45 billion — the initial impulse from many was to assume the money would all go to charity. Indeed, very many news organizations described the donation as either going to charity, or a charitable trust.
Not so, a Facebook spokeswoman confirmed in an email to BuzzFeed News. The spokeswoman further confirmed the initiative is structured as an LLC, and not as a charitable trust.
While charity will certainly be one of the money's destinations, it will be far from the only one.
The money, according to a Facebook SEC filing, will go to "philanthropic, public advocacy, and other activities for the public good."
One such activity: private investment. A Facebook release this afternoon stated as much. "The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative will pursue its mission by funding non-profit organizations, making private investments and participating in policy debates, in each case with the goal of generating positive impact in areas of great need," it said. "Any profits from investments in companies will be used to fund additional work to advance the mission."
Alex Kantrowitz is a senior technology reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in San Francisco. He reports on social and communications.
Contact Alex Kantrowitz at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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