Thursday 19 October 2017

Beijing philanthropist commits S$2 billion to wildlife conservation

BEIJING (BLOOMBERG) - This Saturday (Oct 14) in Monaco, He Qiaonv will announce the first step in a US$1.5 billion (S$2 billion) plan that may represent the largest-ever personal philanthropic commitment to wildlife conservation.

The number isn't the only thing that's surprising about the announcement. The source might equally raise eyebrows: The donation isn't coming from a known Western conservationist like Paul Allen, but from a landscape planner-turned-environmental steward who's based in Beijing.

Madame He represents a new wave of self-made Chinese philanthropists unafraid to spend; her seven-year pledge stands at more than a third of her current US$3.6 billion net worth, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

"(China is) pivoting to a new narrative in record speed," said Tom Kaplan, founder and chairman of Panthera, the leading wild cat conservation organization and He's first international partner. "Their (global) reputation has suffered by being viewed as the scourge of the elephant and tiger-and they want to reverse this."

Original article by Environmental Investigation Agency.