Blackstone Group pledges $7 million in aid to Israel

Large U.S. companies make donations, offer to match funds following Saturday’s deadly terror attacks

The investment management company Blackstone Group has joined a handful of major U.S. corporations committing millions to Israeli humanitarian relief efforts, following the deadly terror attacks by Hamas on Saturday. Blackstone pledged approximately $7 million to aid for Israel, the company’s CEO Stephen Schwarzman and President Jonathan Gray announced on Wednesday in an internal company-wide email. 

In a copy of the email obtained by eJewishPhilanthropy, the executives wrote: “We spoke about the horrific terrorist attacks against the Israeli people on BXTV this past Monday. Today, we wanted to share some further comments, update you on our colleagues in the region and brief you on actions we are taking. These unthinkable terrorist atrocities against innocent Israeli civilians are appalling on every level and an affront to our shared human values.”

“Our thoughts are with the people of Israel, our colleagues there, those with family in the region and all those impacted by the violence. We remain in close contact with our Blackstone colleagues in Israel and are thankful to share that everyone is accounted for and holding up as best as possible. They are obviously under considerable strain, and we thank the many of you who have reached out to offer support. We will be there for them throughout this crisis. The Blackstone Charitable Foundation will be making a $3 million contribution to support humanitarian relief efforts. Additionally, we are each committing $1 million personally and other senior partners have already generously committed approximately $2 million.” 

Schwarzman and Gray, both of whom are Jewish, linked in the email to three organizations: Magen David Adom, United Hatzalah of Israel and UJA-Federation of New York. 

“Should you be interested in giving personally, the Foundation has identified several organizations to consider and will continue to update on other potential nonprofits,” they wrote. 

Schwarzman and Gray were not available to comment. Blackstone is not expected to publicly announce the donation, a source told JI.

Other large corporate contributions to support Israeli terror victims include Fox Corporation’s $1 million to the UJA-Federation of New York’s Israel Emergency Fund on Tuesday and New York-based venture capital firm Insight Partners pledge Monday to donate $1 million. Mastercard told staff on Wednesday that it would offer a 1:1 match for donations of $25 or more up to $15,000 per employee. The Mastercard internal giving site lists Magen David Adom and Leket Israel, which focuses on hunger and food security, as suggested organizations, according to an employee. Michael Bloomberg has also pledged to match donations to Magen David Adom.

Meanwhile, some U.S. major companies have made donations that they say will help Israelis and Palestinians. In an internal email, PricewaterhouseCoopers Chairman Tim Ryan said the accounting firm is “making an initial $250K donation to the Red Cross for the support and relief efforts in the region working directly with Magen David Adom, the Israeli Red Cross and the Palestinian Red Crescent Society.”