Google has finally stepped into the ring against the novel COID-19 as they introduce a steady $800 million stimulus package as a relief from their end. While the entire sum will not be donated to the WHO or any other relief package, Google has crafted an ingenious way of dividing the package into technical and physical measures.
“As the coronavirus outbreak continues to worsen around the world, it’s taking a devastating toll on lives and communities,” said Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai in a blog post. “To help address some of these challenges, today we’re announcing a new $800+ million commitment to support small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs), health organizations and governments, and health workers on the frontline of this global pandemic.”
Here is a small breakdown of the package that Google intends to distribute. A package of $340 million will be provided in ad credits to small and midsized business owners under Google ad accounts. A $200 million investment fund will be set up that will help NGOs and other financial institutions to provide small businesses with a capital infusion. A$250 million advertising grant will help the WHO and other government institutions offer vital information on preventing the spread of COVID-19. Furthermore, the grant also includes a $20 million credits for Google Cloud that will help increase production capacities for lifesaving equipment, which includes a wide variety of face masks and ventilators.
Pichai further quotes that employees from across Alphabet are “bringing engineering, supply chain, and healthcare expertise to facilitate increased production of ventilators, working with equipment manufacturers, distributors and the government in this effort.”
Google’s sister company Verily ramped up drive through testing of the COVID-19 strain along with a thousand volunteers from its workforce to raise awareness and test people with symptoms. On Thursday, Google even launched a separate informational site that will help people diagnose if they have the symptoms, how to counter them and even guide them towards the nearest isolation ward which is functional for the United States only. In addition to the $800 million aid, Google also increased the gift match that it offers to its employees to $10,000 from $7,500.