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As the coronavirus pandemic continues unabated, tech CEOs are marshaling resources, using technology and donating money to help mitigate COVID-19’s impact.
Here is how they do that.
Amazon’s Jeff Bezos Wholly Focussed On COVID-19
Writing in the company blog dayone on Saturday, Amazon Inc.’s AMZN CEO Jeff Bezos said his own time and thinking was now “wholly focussed” on COVID-19.
He wrote, “This isn’t business as usual, and it’s a time of great stress and uncertainty.” Amazon is changing its logistics, transportation, supply chain, purchasing, and third party seller processes to “prioritize stocking and delivering essential items like household staples, sanitizers, baby formula, and medical supplies.”
Bezos announced the company was planning to hire 100,000 new employees and raise wages for hourly workers “who are fulfilling orders and delivering to customers during this period of stress and turmoil.”
Tim Cook Says Apple Helping Health Workers
Apple Inc.’s AAPL CEO announced the company was procuring supplies to fight the pandemic. Cook tweeted on Sunday, “We’re donating millions of masks for health professionals in the US and Europe. To every one of the heroes on the front lines, we thank you.”
On Friday, Cook said on Twitter that Apple was making a “substantial donation,” including medical supplies to Protezione Civile in Italy to help “heroic first responders, medical personnel & volunteers working tirelessly to protect & save lives.”
In a letter this month, Cook announced the company’s donations had reached $15 million worldwide.
Nadella Highlights Microsoft’s Technology Fighting COVID-19
In an email to employees released on LinkedIn, Microsoft Corporation’s MSFT CEO Satya Nadella explained that Microsoft is providing critical infrastructure to the communities where it operates. He said the technology was being used in telemedicine and showcased St. Luke’s University Health Network in Pennsylvania using Teams to video chat with COVID-19 patients.
Nadella also said Microsoft had released a new Power Platform template to help customers share information and collaborate during the crisis.
Talking about Microsoft’s efforts to help its employees Nadella said, “To address the significant hardship that lost work creates for employees and families, we are paying our employees in our retail stores and our hourly service providers their regular pay during this time regardless of hours worked.”
Zuckerberg Says Facebook Donating Masks
Facebook Inc.’s FB Mark Zuckerberg posted, “Health workers urgently need more protective gear. To help, Facebook donated our emergency reserve of 720,000 masks.” Zuckerberg went on to explain that they were working to source millions more.
Alphabet’s Pichai Focuses On Education
On Saturday, Sundar Pichai, CEO of Alphabet Inc. GOOGL GOOG, tweeted about Teach From Home, “We’re rolling out Teach from Home, a tools & resources hub to help teachers continue teaching during school closures. We’re also establishing a $10M Distance Learning fund to support orgs that help remove barriers for students learning remotely. #COVID19.”
Teach from Home would be a central hub of information, tips, training, and tools from across Google for Education that will help teachers. Google has announced a $50 million COVID-19 response, out of which $10 million would go towards its Distance Learning Fund. The fund’s first grant of $1 million would be made to the Khan Academy.
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