Dealflow | October 23, 2019

Facebook, under scrutiny in Washington DC, pledges $1 billion for affordable housing in California

Dennis Price
ImpactAlpha Editor

Dennis Price

ImpactAlpha, Oct. 23 – Social media giant Facebook became the third tech company this year to commit capital to affordable housing in West Coast cities (Microsoft pledged $500 million in Seattle; Alphabet’s Google committed $1 billion in San Francisco).

Today, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg will testify before Congress about allegations that Facebook allowed third-party advertisers to exclude certain users from viewing housing ads, potentially violating the Fair Housing Act. (The company is on track to spend more than ever this year on federal government lobbying, according to Roll Call.)

Facebook’s billion-dollar pledge, spread over 10 years, aims to create 20,000 new housing units. At least $150 million will go towards the Bay’s Future Fund, the affordable housing investment fund of the Partnership for the Bay’s Future.

Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, the philanthropic vehicle of Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, committed $40 million to the partnership in January.