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September 26, 2016

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Tencent to donate 2% of its annual profit to charity

CHINESE billionaire Pony Ma Huateng, the founder of Tencent, said in Hong Kong his company would donate 2 percent of its annual profit to charity and flagged growth in the use of mobile Internet in China’s philanthropy sector.

Ma’s pledge follows China’s introduction of new laws this month that provided a legal framework for approved Internet companies to raise and manage funds for charity.

It also comes days after Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan said they would donate more than US$3 billion toward a plan to “cure, prevent or manage” all disease.

Ma said China’s first charity law provided a missing legal framework in Chinese philanthropy operations and allowed more flexibility in their administration.

Ma and Tencent co-founder Chen Yidan were named in a report by the Hurun Research Institute in June as China’s top two philanthropists in the past year.

Ma, who in April pledged 100 million company shares worth more than US$2 billion to a personal charity fund in April in one of China’s largest philanthropic pledges, has vowed to use technology to transform China’s public welfare efforts.

Ma said China has been a world leader in drawing the social benefits of mobile Internet technology and cited philanthropy as one key area of change.

“For example, three years ago, 90 percent of the donations made on our online platform were done from PC, now it is 90 percent mobile,” Ma said.

Tencent is China’s largest social media network and entertainment company and operates the popular messaging app WeChat. According to Tencent’s 2015 annual report, it donated 480 million yuan (US$72 million) to Tencent Charity Funds, about 1.6 percent of its 29.12 billion yuan profit.



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