Facebook on Tuesday shared plans to help both its employees and thousands of small businesses around the world deal with the coronavirus pandemic, with the tech giant planning on giving $1,000 bonuses to each of its workers.
The bonuses were first reported by The Information, followed by CNBC, on Tuesday morning. Facebook had nearly 45,000 full-time employees at the end of 2019, along with thousands of contracted workers; the company did not immediately respond to whether it would be paying bonuses to its contractors as well. With each full-time employee receiving a bonus, that comes out to $45 million the company will be paying out.
And earlier on Tuesday, COO Sheryl Sandberg shared Facebook plans on giving away $100 million in “cash grants and ad credits” to 30,000 small businesses — or about $3,333 on average — to combat the COVID-19 outbreak. The small businesses are spread out across 30 countries. Details on how to apply for the grants were not available yet on Facebook’s page outlining the program; the page said it was to help with rent costs, “cover operational costs,” and to help businesses “connect with more customers.”
“In recent weeks, we have seen inspiring examples of individuals and groups helping each other. People across the globe are stepping up, rising to the enormous challenge in front of us,” Sandberg said on her Facebook page. “We want to do our part too. Small businesses are the heartbeat of our communities, and many of the people who run these businesses are heavily affected by the crisis – especially as more and more people sensibly stay home. The longer the crisis goes on, the greater the risk to small businesses and to the livelihoods of their owners and employees.”
Facebook, like most other companies, has been rocked in recent weeks by the coronavirus pandemic. The company’s stock is down more than 25% since the beginning of the year, and it had to cancel its annual F8 developer conference to avoid bringing thousands of people together.