With $45 billion pledge, Mark Zuckerberg imagines ‘a world without suffering …

2 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Brazilian Bank BTG Says Esteves No Longer a Controlling Shareholder.

Mark Zuckerberg has announced his birthday gift for his newborn daughter: he and his wife, Priscilla Chan, will be putting nearly all of their combined wealth into a new foundation that will invest in “advancing human potential and promoting equality.” The decision places the couple among the elite ranks of America’s most generous philanthropists – billionaires who subscribe to a philosophy that excess wealth should be employed to advance the status of the greater community. Grupo BTG Pactual SA’s partners took control of the bank through a share swap, splitting from its former leader, Andre Esteves, a week after the Brazilian billionaire was jailed in a corruption probe. The move could have even broader effect as an inspiration to others – especially young people – to invest their wealth back into the community, philanthropy experts say.

The partners, including new co-Chief Executive Officers Marcelo Kalim and Roberto Sallouti, swapped shares with Esteves to take control of Latin America’s largest independent investment bank, according to a regulatory filing from the Sao Paulo-based firm on Wednesday. He said he would dedicate 99 per cent of his shares in Facebook to the following “missions”: personalised learning, curing disease, connecting people and building strong communities. The social media tycoon, personally worth an estimated $44 billion, added while he and Chan were committed to spending their lives playing a “small part” to resolve the challenges, he would “continue to serve as Facebook’s CEO for many, many years to come”. The Facebook post has already been linked by tens of thousands of people – among them Gates’ own wife Melinda and Arianna Huffington, of the Huffington Post.

Banco BTG Pactual, the group’s main operating subsidiary, was cut to junk by Moody’s Investors Service on Tuesday amid concern the company will struggle to keep enough cash on hand and maintain its franchise. A spokesperson has confirmed to Buzzfeed that as a company, the Initiative can spend its money on whatever it wants – including private, profit-generating investment. “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,” the spokesperson said.

In the short term, the Facebook founder and chief executive officer has said that he will either sell or give up $1 billion in shares over the next three years, while still retaining a controlling stake in the social-media giant. Esteves, who was jailed on Nov. 25 for allegedly trying to interfere with the testimony of a former Petroleo Brasileiro SA executive, resigned his posts on Sunday as his arrest was extended indefinitely. In 2010, Zuckerberg launched Startup:Education, a grantmaking organization, with a high-profile gift of $100 million over five years for schools in the Newark, N.J., area.

BTG said Wednesday it sold a stake in Rede D’Or Sao Luiz SA, Brazil’s biggest hospital chain, to Singaporean sovereign-wealth fund GIC Pte for 2.38 billion reais ($618 million) as it seeks to shore up cash. More recently, in November, the couple pledged their commitment to the Giving Pledge, an organization that invites wealthy individuals and families to pledge their wealth to good causes either over a lifetime or as part of a will.

Other philanthropists who have made a gift of more than one billion over the past decade include Warren Buffett, who made a gift of $43.6 billion in 2006 to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and three other foundations, and hotelier Barron Hilton, who pledged a gift of $1.2 billion to the Conrad N. On behalf of future generations, I thank them.” “Our lists of the top donors are usually dominated by people in their 70s or 80s,” Stacy Palmer, editor of the Chronicle of Philanthropy, told Reuters. “This is a message to other young people who are deciding what to do with their great wealth.”

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