Software giant Microsoft has launched a new philanthropic organisation, dubbed Microsoft Philanthropies, through which it aims to 'drive greater inclusion and empowerment of people who do not yet have access to technology.'
Announced this week by Microsoft president Brad Smith in a blog post
, Microsoft Philanthropies is described as a dedicated organisation within Microsoft which aims to bridge the gap between technology haves and have-nots - often called the 'digital divide' - through cash investments to non-profit partnerships and deeper support of creative partnerships and employee's community engagement.
'Microsoft Philanthropies will invest in digital inclusion programs and partnerships. These assets include our strategic societal investments of cash and technology, the technical talents of our employees, our commitment to creative and collaborative partnerships, and the reach and scale of our brand and voice,
' claimed Smith of the group's founding. 'Through Microsoft Philanthropies, we will integrate and leverage these assets to drive greater inclusion and empowerment of people who do not yet have access to technology and the opportunities it offers and enables. As we do so, we will build on the foundation of Microsoft’s 30+ years of giving and the insights from our many valued partners and the communities they serve, and seek new ways to achieve greater outcomes for a broader segment of the world’s population.
Microsoft Philanthropies is not to be confused with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, set up in 2000 by the eponymous Microsoft co-founder and his wife, which is a privately-held foundation which boasts a $44.3 billion endowment of which at least $28 billion was donated personally by Gates.