It’s perhaps one of the most striking signs that Apple is running under new leadership. The company announced on Thursday that it’s donating $2.5 million to the American Red Cross’ Sandy relief efforts, VentureBeat reports.
While it’s always been heralded for its innovation, Apple wasn’t considered the most generous company when the late Steve Jobs maintained control of the company. It launched a corporate charity in 1987 that only lasted 15 months. And in 2010, Jobs –- who accrued an estimated $8.3 billion -- declined joining the Giving Pledge, an initiative started by Warren Buffett and Bill Gates that’s gotten 92 billionaires to pledge half their wealth to charity.
While some have speculated that the tech giant donated anonymously, Jobs never made the kind of grand giving gestures that Cook offered up on Thursday.
Now that he’s taken over as CEO, Cook seems more intent on positioning the company as a fixture in the philanthropy scene.
In an internal company email that 9to5mac.com received announcing the $2.5 million gift to the Red Cross, Cook wrote: “For the past week, our thoughts have been with those affected by Hurricane Sandy and its aftermath. And Apple employees and customers the world over have raised millions of dollars toward the relief effort so far. But we can always do more.”
This announcement comes on the heels of a number of other recent benevolent gestures.
Back in February, the new CEO told employees that it has donated $100 million split between two Stanford hospitals and Product RED, according to theverge.com. In September, Cook declared that Apple would match its employees donations to nonprofit organizations up to $10,000 a year, according to Forbes.com.
“We are all really inspired by the generosity of our co-workers who give back to the community and this program is going to help that individual giving go even farther," Cook said, according to the news outlet.
Related on HuffPost:
U-Haul is <a href="http://www.uhaul.com/Articles/About/1091/U-Haul-Offers-30-Days-of-Free-Storage-and-U-Box-Pod-Moving-and-Storage-to-Residents-Throughout-Northeastern-Parts-of-the-United-States" target="_hplink">offering 30 days of free storage</a> to those affected by Hurricane Sandy.
Home Depot donated $1 million to help fund hurricane relief, <a href="http://www.bizjournals.com/atlanta/news/2012/11/01/home-depot-gives-1-million-to-sandy.html">the Atlantic Business Chronicle eeports</a>. Home Depot also shipped out hundreds of truckloads of supplies to affected areas throughout the northeast, according to <a href="http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203335504578088863559188542.html?mod=googlenews_wsj">The Wall Street Journal</a>.
Walmart has said it will donate $1.5 million to the relief effort, <a href="http://lifeinc.today.com/_news/2012/11/02/14859796-companies-step-up-to-help-victims-of-sandy?lite#__utma=14933801.284669080.1343909123.1351794468.1351875466.24&__utmb=14933801.1.10.1351875466&__utmc=14933801&__utmx=-&__utmz=14933801.1351097238.13.4.utmcsr=t.co%7Cutmccn=(referral)%7Cutmcmd=referral%7Cutmcct=/hPDrnKVo&__utmv=14933801.%7C8=Earned By=msnbc%7Ccover=1">according to NBC News</a>.
JP Morgan Chase
JP Morgan Chase waived overdraft and late fees on loans and credit cards during the brunt of the storm, <a href="http://newsfeed.time.com/2012/11/01/banks-and-businesses-show-heart-in-wake-of-hurricane-sandy/">Time reports</a>.
The NFL Players' Union has pledged to donate $1 million to the Red Cross to help those affected by Sandy, <a href="http://espn.go.com/espn/story/_/id/8580669/nfl-union-donating-1m-hurricane-sandy-relief-effort">ESPN reports</a>.
The hotel and travel website Airbnb is waiving its fees in affected areas of the northeast. CEO Brian Chesky has urged the hotels listed on the site to lower their rates in light of the recent events, <a href="http://newsfeed.time.com/2012/11/01/banks-and-businesses-show-heart-in-wake-of-hurricane-sandy/">Newsweek reports</a>.
CVS Caremark will donate more than $150,000 worth of food and water to the Red Cross, <a href="http://www.sacbee.com/2012/10/31/4951686/cvs-caremark-donates-more-than.html">the Sacramento Bee reports</a>.
Kohl's plans to donate $1 million in cash to the Red Cross and is encouraging its employees to volunteer in the relief effort, <a href="http://www.jsonline.com/business/kohls-northwestern-mutual-announce-storm-relief-donations-to-red-cross-c97f2qf-176844991.html">the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports</a>.
Viacom is donating $1 million to the relief effort and is working to help Viacom employees who were impacted by the hurricane, <a href="http://www.mnn.com/money/sustainable-business-practices/blogs/hurricane-sandy-corporations-donate-millions">Mother Nature Network reports</a>.
New York Yankees
The Yankees are donating $500,000 to the Red Cross, <a href="http://www.nj.com/yankees/index.ssf/2012/10/yankees_to_donate_500000_to_hu.html">according to NJ.com</a>.
Chevrolet has donated 50 large vans to the Red Cross to help bring relief to those in need, <a href="http://www.autoworldnews.com/articles/2591/20121101/red-cross-receives-50-vehicles-chevrolet-aid-hurricane-sandy-victims.htm">Auto World News reports</a>.
West coast energy company PG&E sent trucks, equipment, and workers to the east coast earlier this week. The PG&E crews are expected to stay and help north-easterners for the next few weeks, <a href="http://www.myfoxal.com/story/19964896/energy-company-on-west-coast-helping-in-sandy-efforts">Fox WBRC reports</a>.
The Walt Disney Company is donating $2 million to help victims of Hurricane Sandy and will run public service announcements encouraging viewers to donate and volunteer on its television channels, <a href="http://www.mnn.com/money/sustainable-business-practices/blogs/hurricane-sandy-corporations-donate-millions">Mother Nature Network reports</a>.
Home improvement chain Lowe's is donating $1 million and will be accepting donations for the Red Cross in its stores, <a href="http://www.mnn.com/money/sustainable-business-practices/blogs/hurricane-sandy-corporations-donate-millions">Mother Nature Network reports</a>.
Wells Fargo donated $1 million to help victims of Hurricane Sandy and will be accepting donations to the Red Cross through its ATMs until November 13th. Wells Fargo also waived many late fees through yesterday, <a href="http://www.bizjournals.com/sanfrancisco/news/2012/11/01/wells-fargo-gives-1m-for-hurricane.html">San Francisco Business Times reports</a>.