Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg joined the board of SurveyMonkey in 2015, shortly after her husband and the company’s CEO, Dave Goldberg, died suddenly while on vacation in Mexico. Sandberg, who now owns 9.9 percent of the company, is giving it all to charity.
“Ms. Sandberg plans to donate all shares beneficially owned by her (or the proceeds from the sale thereof) to the Sheryl Sandberg and Dave Goldberg Family Foundation as part of fulfilling their philanthropic commitment to the Giving Pledge,” SurveyMonkey said in its IPO filing on Wednesday.
The Giving Pledge was created in 2010 by Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett to encourage America’s richest individuals to donate the majority of their money to charity. Sandberg, who’s a billionaire from her Facebook stake, joined the pledge in 2014.
The Sandberg and Goldberg Foundation, formerly known as the Lean In Foundation, focuses in two areas, both of which are the subjects of books written by Sandberg. One is targeted at helping women advance and succeed in their professional lives by pursuing equal pay initiatives, mentorship and sexual harassment support. The other focuses on supporting people who face adversity, whether its grief and loss, incarceration or divorce.
The value of Sandberg’s shares will be determined by the IPO and the stock’s performance on the public market. The last time SurveyMonkey raised money was 2014, when it was valued at $2 billion. At that price, Sandberg’s holdings would be worth about $200 million.
Goldberg became CEO of SurveyMonkey in 2009, and spent the next six years running the online survey company. He died in May 2015 during a family trip to Mexico. Goldberg, whose autopsy indicated he had a heart arrhythmia, fell while running on a treadmill.
SurveyMonkey CEO Zander Lurie, who took the helm in January 2016, said the following of Goldberg in the comany’s prospectus:
Dave died tragically and suddenly on May 1, 2015. Anyone who knew Dave will understand how devastating it was for the company — for all of Silicon Valley, actually — to lose such a visionary. Organizations that suffer that sort of shock can either unravel or rally. We rallied. I believe the company is more empathetic, more resilient and more determined because of Dave’s life and death.