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Aussie tycoon to give away $232m

He is Australia’s third richest man, with a personal fortune worth billions.

And he's giving A$200 million (S$232.8 million), for good causes like the arts and indigenous education.

Casino tycoon James Packer, who runs worldwide gambling empire Crown, announced the setting up of the National Philanthropic Fund today (July 22) at Crown's Melbourne casino.

The Sydney Morning Herald reported that the pledge was made to 10 Sydney arts institutions such as the Sydney Theatre Company, Art Gallery of New South Wales and the Museum of Contemporary Art last November after Crown received approval from the NSW government for a billion-dollar casino and hotel to be built at Barangaroo.

Half of the money, to be donated in A$20 million installments for the next 10 years, will come from Crown Resorts, he said. The rest of the will come from the Packer family.

Sister is "driving force"

His sister and fund administrator Gretel said: "This exciting collaboration between Crown Resorts and our family creates a platform from which to contribute towards strengthening communities in Australia and developing our artistic future."

Philanthropy Australia chief executive Louise Walsh said she hoped it would encourage more of the country’s corporate boards and wealthiest people to do the same.

The son of late media baron Kerry Packer, James Packer is one of Australia’s wealthiest people, with a personal fortune estimated at A$7.2 billion.

He followed in another billionaire's footsteps.

Alex Waislitz

Media reports yesterday said Melbourne investor Alex Waislitz planned to give A$50 million to charity over the next 10 years.

Sources: AFP, The Sydney Morning Herald

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