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Chairman Wang Jianlin Tops the Forbes Philanthropy List

Apr 19,2011

Entrepreneurs generous with donations, but with strict requirements.

The total amount donated by the 100 listed entrepreneurs was RMB 8.12 billion, the lower limit of the donation for listing reached RMB 14 million; both figures set historical records.

There were 16 entrepreneurs donated over RMB 100 million in 2010; Dalian Wanda Group Chairman Wang Jianlin, Fuyao Group Chairman Cao Dewang, and Oceanwide Holdings Chairman Lu Zhiqiang were the top three in the list. 59% of the listed philanthropists were also in the Forbes Rich List.

Forbes released the China Philanthropy list in Chinese for the sixth time on April 19, 2011. It showed that the 100 listed entrepreneurs donated a total of RMB 8.12 billion, 214% increase from last year. The threshold for the top 100 list jumped from RMB 5 million last year to RMB 14 million.

64% of the total donation were made by the 16 entrepreneurs donated at least RMB 100 billion each. Dalian Wanda Group Chairman Wang Jianlin, Fuyao Group Chairman Cao Dewang, and Oceanwide Holdings Chairman Lu Zhiqiang were the top three in the list, with donation of RMB 1.28 billion, 1.03 billion and 550 million respectively. Of whom, Dalian Wanda Group Chairman Wang Jianlin donated RMB 1 billion in his own name to Nanjing Government for the renovation of the Jinling Da Bao En Temple, which became the largest personal donation in China’s philanthropy history.

46 entrepreneurs entered the top 100 list were also in the list last year. They have continued passion for China’s philanthropy. 59 of the entrepreneurs in the top 100 list were in the 2010 Forbes Chinese Rich List.

By sectors, properties and mining utilities contributed the most donations as always. By region, Guangdong, Fujian, Liaoning, Beijing, Jiangsu and Zhejiang were the provinces (cities) with the most donations. This basically coincided with the provinces (cities) which had the most number of rich people.

Person in charge of the China philanthropy project Shi Guowei notes, people still revolve their charities around event-specific donations. One type of such events is natural disasters such as Qinghai Yushu earthquake and the drought in the five provinces in southwest China. Another is the charity events organized by various departments, such as ‘China Charity Walks’, ‘Guangdong Poverty Alleviation Day’, ‘Spring Wind Action’ and ‘Chongqing at work on a Green Yangtze River’ etc.. These event-specific donations accounted for over 50% of the total annual donation.

The statistics showed the donation activities this year has been the best since the survey started, in terms of both threshold and total donated amount. Entrepreneurs have become increasingly generous: Wang Jianlin donated RMB 1 billion for the renovation of Nanjing Da Bao En Temple, and RMB 100 million for Yushu earthquake relief; Cao Dewang donated RMB 400 million for the construction of the new library in Fuzhou, RMB 200 million for the drought rescue in southwest China, and RMB 100 million for Yushu earthquake relief; Lu Zhiqiang injected RMB 200 million to set up the Oceanwide Public Welfare Foundation, RMB 100 million for Yushu earthquake rescue; and the four enterprises, Zhujiang Investment, Hopson Development Holdings, New Southern Group and Candlelight Group under the umbrella of the Zhu Mengyi family donated RMB 420 million on the Guangdong Poverty Alleviation Day. More and more entrepreneurs were inclined to invest large amount of money in more significant matters.

On the other side of the generosity is that they became more ‘harsh’. Cao Dewang’s plan to donate RMB 200 billion to the drought-affected area in the five provinces in the southwest almost fell through because Cao had strict conditions: he required the RMB 200 million donation to be distributed to almost 100 thousand rural households within half a year, with less than 1% error rate; the management fee should be kept within 3% of the total donation, compared to the management fee ceiling of 10% set by the current Foundation Operational Guidelines.

To ensure the result of the implementation, Cao Dewang set up a professional supervision committee to monitor the use of the donation, and invited media to monitor the whole process. Such harsh conditions on the donation won Cao Dewang a title, the harshest donator. This was also the first case of Chinese donator enforcing the accountability of the donation.

Forbes Chinese Chief Editor Zhou Jiangong notes, “The threshold and the total amount of the donation for the China Philanthropy List have seen significant increase this year, which shows that China philanthropists’ donation awareness and the abilities have both improved. This was a reflection of the company social responsibilities that Forbes has always advocated. Wang Jianlin, Cao Dewang and Lu Zhiqiang and other rich people have become the role models for China’s charity work”. Forbes Chinese Executive Editor Liu Ruiming adds, “As donation activities are boosted, we would like to see more detailed and transparent use of the donation. We should encourage entrepreneurs like Cao Dewang; they have the intention and ability to work on charities, and they make sure the donation goes to where it should be.”

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