Microsoft Kicks Off Annual Employee Giving Campaign

SEATTLE, Sept. 18, 1998 — Microsoft Corp. employees gathered today at the Kingdome to discuss touchdowns of a different kind as Microsoft Chairman and CEO Bill Gates and other company executives kicked off Microsoft’s 15th annual employee Giving Campaign at the yearly company meeting. The Microsoft® Giving Campaign, a part of the company’s matching gift program, encourages employees to donate portions of their paychecks to nonprofit organizations. The goal for this year’s campaign is $10.4 million – $5.2 million in employee donations and an equal company match. This goal is an increase of almost 20 percent over last year’s Giving Campaign total of $8.4 million.

In its 1998 Annual Report of Giving, published today, Microsoft reported that employees donated over $9.4 million in cash through the company’s year-round matching gift program and $11.5 million in software, resulting in awards to nonprofits and educational institutions of over $40 million in cash and software from Microsoft and its employees. In addition, the number of employees participating, the amount of their giving and the number of nonprofit organizations that were supported through Microsoft giving programs all increased this past year.

Over 90 percent of employee gifts matched by Microsoft went to organizations providing human services and education. Microsoft matches up to $12,000 annually for all its employees.

The overall scope of Microsoft’s giving increased this year, according to the annual report. For the fiscal year ending in June 1998, Microsoft gave more than $17 million in cash and $89 million in software to almost 2,000 nonprofit and educational organizations. This marks an increase of over $3 million in cash giving and an almost twofold increase in software donations from 1997.

“I’m extremely proud of the way our employees are devoted to making their communities stronger through donations and volunteerism,” Gates said. “It’s exciting to see employees make the same commitment to charitable work that they give to building great software that improves peoples lives.”

Microsoft’s commitment to supporting local and national communities was recognized this year when United Way of America awarded Microsoft three national awards, naming it one of six National Corporate Leadership companies in United Way’s annual Spirit of America awards program. Microsoft was recognized for successfully fulfilling its corporate affairs mission by accomplishing the following:

  • Enhancing access to information technology

  • Strengthening nonprofit and educational institutions in the communities where its employees live and work

  • Encouraging employee giving and volunteerism

“Microsoft is proud of the overwhelming support we’ve received from our employees for our giving programs. The annual Giving Campaign, the participation in community volunteer activities, and the utilization of our matching gifts program show that Microsoft employees clearly care about their neighbors, their schools and their communities,” said Barbara Dingfield, director, Microsoft community affairs. “Our goal is to exceed $10 million in this year’s Giving Campaign, and I have no doubt that our employees are up to the challenge.”

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software for personal computers. The company offers a wide range of products and services for business and personal use, each designed with the mission of making it easier and more enjoyable for people to take advantage of the full power of personal computing every day.

Microsoft is either a registered trademark or trademark of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

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