Dear Bill and Melinda Gates:
We are writing this letter on behalf of Mr. Rupert Hoogewerf (Chinese name Hu Run), a founder of the most influential and recognized CHINA RICH LIST and Chinese entrepreneurial magazine-HURUN REPORT (www.hurun.net). It is our great honor and pleasure to invite Mr. and Mrs. Gates to attend the celebration ceremony of the 6th annual China Philanthropy List in May 2009 in Shanghai, China. We are very excited to know that Mr. Gates intended to launch a campaign to get the wealthiest Chinese to take the charitable work in a press conference during the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland this January. It will be a perfect timing and opportunity to combine the strength and vision of both parties to promote philanthropy in China. Please allow us to give you a brief introduction of Mr. Rupert Hoogewerf, his organization and the China Philanthropy List below.
By publishing the first ever CHINA RICH LIST on Forbes magazine in 1999, HURUN REPORT is now widely recognized as the foremost authority in tracking the rapid changes in China’s entrepreneurial community. In 2004, Mr. Hoogewerf was named one of the 100 Top Influencers in China’s Globalization by Global Entrepreneur magazine. In 2005, China Entrepreneur magazine named the Hurun Report China Rich List as one of the ten most important business events of the past twenty years. In recognition of his contribution to the understanding of wealth creation in China, Hoogewerf was awarded the prestigious “2002 Person of the Year” by News Weekly Magazine. Other winners have included Zhong Nanshan (2003), the SARS whistleblower; Liu Xiang (2004), China’s first Olympic gold medalist in track and field; Li Yuchun (2005), winner of China’s inaugural Super Girl, the Chinese equivalent of American Idol in the US; and Yi Zhongtian, for his reinterpretations of Chinese classics.
Grown up and educated in the Europe, Mr. Rupert Hoogewerf always recognized the importance of charitable missions. In 2004, when philanthropy, charity, and donating were all new words in China, Mr. Hoogewerf published the first China Philanthropy List to encourage and promote charitable contribution from Chinese entrepreneurs. His list draws on a survey covering 2,500 entrepreneurs on the Chinese mainland. In the latest (2008) list, the country’s top 100 philanthropists have given away 12.9 billion ($1.8 billion) since 2003, with education, social welfare, and poverty reduction attracting the most donors. Twenty-seven donors each gave more than 100 million yuan ($14.6 million) this year, compared to 15 donors last year. The report, which also compiles an annual list of the country’s wealthiest people, found that 66 of the top 100 philanthropists also ranked in China’s 100 wealthiest this year, up from 54 last year. The charity lists have created a favorable social environment for the development of the country’s philanthropy sector, said Zheng Yuanchang, director with the social relief office of the Ministry of Social Affairs. Now the publishing of the annual China Philanthropy List becomes the most media covered and reported philanthropic event in China. Hurun Report also hosts the biggest charity fund raising event in China each year, attracting hundreds of philanthropists whose names appear on the China Rich List and China Philanthropy List, with a total contribution of more than $10 million. Under his influence, more and more wealthy people are setting up their own charitable funds, and the whole society is paying more attention to charity. For example, The Capital Philanthropy Federation has announced in November 2008 that December 3 is Capital Philanthropy Day in China’s capital, Beijing, and that it will hold public welfare activities on that day to promote charity undertakings in the city.
Although we have seen some progress in charity work in China in the past few years, there is a lot more that needs to be done, especially in the current challenging economic environment. In May 2009, Hurun Report will publish its 6th annual China Philanthropy List and host a celebration event to recognize the great achievement of these philanthropists and further promote charitable giving through the mass media coverage to the Chinese people. We would like to formally invite Mr. and Mrs. Gates to attend this most important annual charitable event in China and to give a keynote speech. As one of the world’s most generous philanthropists and an icon of promoting charity work, your participation in this event will have a profound impact on encouraging future charitable contribution by the rich and wealthy people in China and on promoting the concept of giving back to society. It will also present a great opportunity to establish a network.
We will send a detailed schedule to you and make further arrangements. We are looking forward to hearing from you.
Thank you very much for your consideration.
Patty Chen on behalf of Mr. Rupert Hoogewerf