Elon Musk has hired high stakes poker player and REG co-founder Igor Kurganov to help distribute a massive $5.74 billion gift to charity.
The world’s richest man was challenged to use his vast wealth to help solve world hunger in a Twitter thread and responded immediately that if shown the gift would work he would give it right away.
🔹 2% of @elonmusk‘s wealth is $6B
🔹 In 2020 the UN World Food Program (WFP) raised $8.4B. How come it didn’t “solve world hunger”?
— Dr. Eli David (@DrEliDavid) October 30, 2021
Elon Musk Hires Igor Kurganov to Facilitate $5.74 Billion Charity Donation
With a reported net worth of $224 billion, a $6 billion donation isn’t going to change much in the 50-year-old’s future plans.
A few hours after Musk asked the UN World Food Program to clarify how the money would solve the issue of hunger, David Beasley, the WFP head, responded exactly what he meant.
“.@elonmusk! Headline not accurate. $6B will not solve world hunger, but it WILL prevent geopolitical instability, mass migration and save 42 million people on the brink of starvation. An unprecedented crisis and a perfect storm due to Covid/conflict/climate crises.”
Elon Musk was quick to repeat his earlier request in the Tweet below.
Please publish your current & proposed spending in detail so people can see exactly where money goes.
Sunlight is a wonderful thing.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) October 31, 2021
Then, perhaps surprisingly, Beasley took the bait and a fortnight later presented his plan for the world’s billionaires to fund.
What is REG Charity?
The REG charity is an organisation created by poker players dedicated to making charity donations as effective as possible.
Igor Kurganov, a top live tournament player with over $18 million in winnings, has been at the forefront of REG since its inception and was no doubt picked out by Elon Musk with these skills in mind.
What we don’t know, still, is where this money is supposedly going.
Elon Musk is said to have handed over the huge gift back in November after selling a chunk of Tesla stock, but he hasn’t let slip any details of the spending plan. Kurganov has also refused to speak to the media on the matter.
What Happens Next?
Experts in philanthropy are now criticising Musk for not being more transparent. They claim that the scale of this operation is so large that it should be a matter of public interest.
But Musk’s provocative tendencies probably mean that he won’t bow to any pressure from outsiders until he’s ready to make any announcement himself.
There has also been criticism on social media that this donation is only a convenient tax write-off.
The Tesla chief was hit with what he called “the biggest tax bill in history” last year—an eye-watering $11 billion. This donation could considerably reduce what he owes to the US Government.
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