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Sony sets up $100m COVID-19 relief fund

$10m goes straight to the frontline.

Sony has set up a $100m COVID-19 relief fund.

The fund is designed to support those around the world affected by the coronavirus.

According to the World Health Organisation, the number of infections globally will reach a million within days, and there is growing concern in several countries about supplies of protection equipment for medical workers.

Sony has earmarked three areas it wants to support with the money: assistance for frontline medical and first responder efforts; support for children and educators who now must work remotely; and support for the creative community in the entertainment industry, such as music, pictures, games and animation.

$10m of the fund will first go to the COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund for WHO powered by the UN Foundation and Swiss Philanthropy Foundation, as well as Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) and United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), to assist medical workers and others on the frontline of response efforts to the virus.

Sony is looking to work with external partners to explore ways it can support activities to prevent further spread, and continue treatment. Sony said it will use its technologies to support education activities.

As for the creative community, Sony said it will support up-and-coming creators and artists who have been impacted by the cancellation or postponement of concerts and live events, or the shutting down of film and television productions.

Sony added its 110,000 employees worldwide will be able to contribute to the fund via a matching gift program.

Sony boss Kenichiro Yoshida said: "Sony extends its condolences to the families of those who have passed away as a result of the COVID-19 crisis, and extends its sympathies to all those who have been impacted. In order to overcome the unprecedented challenges that as a society we now face around the world, we will do all we can as a global company to support the individuals on the frontlines of the battle against COVID-19, the children who are our future, and those who have been impacted in the creative community."

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