Although the measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19 have become even more dramatic — with governments starting to track citizens through apps, knocking on doors to break up parties, and so on and so forth — the outbreak has only continued to worsen over the past week.
According to recent data from the analytics site WorldOMeter, there are now over 1,450,000 total confirmed coronavirus cases, with over 1,000,000 cases still active. At the start of April, the case count was at 935,232, and at the start of March, it was a mere 80,000. It’s fair to say that things have been getting worse, real quick.
Due to the worsening outbreak, corporations and individuals alike have mobilized to do stop the virus, which is wreaking havoc on the health of the world and the economy in a big way.
The latest to join the fight is Jack Dorsey, Corporate America’s biggest Bitcoin bull and the chief executive of both fintech giant Square and Twitter.
Bitcoin Bull & Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey Allocates $1 Billion to Stop the Coronavirus
Yesterday, Dorsey announced in a Twitter thread — it’s quite fitting, I must say — that he will be “moving $1 billion of my Square equity,” which purportedly corresponds with around 28% of his total wealth, to a LLC called “Start Small” to “fund global COVID-19 relief.” Start Small existed prior to this outbreak, but this is the first time it has seen mainstream attention.
Notably, SQ is up on the day thus far, rallying 7%, presumably on the news that Dorsey is doing this. So the $1 billion is actually $1.058 billion as of the time of this article’s writing.
Dorsey did not indicate what initiatives he is going to donate to for the time being, but has started with a $100,000 contribution to a food bank in America.
I’m moving $1B of my Square equity (~28% of my wealth) to #startsmall LLC to fund global COVID-19 relief. After we disarm this pandemic, the focus will shift to girl’s health and education, and UBI. It will operate transparently, all flows tracked here: https://t.co/hVkUczDQmz
— jack (@jack) April 7, 2020
If the money is not spent by the time this outbreak is over, Dorsey intends to allocate the rest to the promotion of Universal Basic Income and girl’s health and education, calling both issues critical. Notably, Dorsey donated to the presidential campaign of Andrew Yang, the Democratic candidate who ran on an idea of giving each American $1,000 a month while also lauding technology, crypto included.
Since this announcement, the Twitter world has responded in force, lauding the Silicon Valley entrepreneur for taking such initiative, with his tweet announcing the donation garnering 240,000 likes and commendation from Yang, Cool Quit CEO Eugene Gu, and many others.
Crypto Community Joins the Coronavirus Fight
Dorsey is far from the only member of the cryptocurrency community to have contributed to preventing the ongoing crisis from getting worse.
As reported by Blockonomi previously, Binance launched a social media campaign to donate up to $1 million, with the donation amount depending on how many retweets and uses of the hashtag #CryptoAgainstCOVID sees.
Ripple launched its own campaign, donating hundreds of thousands of dollars to local response funds to help combat the coronavirus in San Francisco, where there is somewhat of a hotspot due to it being a travel hub.
There’s also been a collective effort from top crypto companies, including Brave, Gemini, The Block, Electric Coin Co., and others, through The Giving Block’s #CryptoCOVID19 campaign.
Crypto banding together with the rest of the world’s economies makes sense: firms and individuals in this space have been strongly impacted by the virus too.
On an individual level, prominent ex-Ethereum developer Afri Schoedon, former Ripple CEO Chris Larsen, and many others in the community have been unfortunately infected by the virus, though many have since fully recovered.
On a corporate level, there has been a large drop-off in funding deals, with reports indicating that the number of deals that took place in Q1 of 2020 amounting to a mere 79 — down from the 220 in Q1 of 2019 or 230 in Q1 of 2018. Furthermore, Bitcoin.com, crypto mining firm Bitfarms, and mining hardware manufacturer Bitfury are among the firms in this industry that have begun to lay off staff over the past few weeks.