Grab CEO Anthony Tan shaves his head for children with cancer & raises S$197,010

A record sum raised by one individual for the annual Hair for Hope campaign.

Belmont Lay | July 29, 2019, 11:52 PM

Grab’s CEO Anthony Tan has shaved his head for children with cancer and raised S$197,010 in donations by Monday, July 29, 2019.

The amount he raised singlehandedly is a record sum for the annual Hair for Hope campaign.

His target was S$80,000.

A Children’s Cancer Foundation (CCF) spokesperson said this is the single-most amount raised by an individual since the yearly drive began in 2003.

The previous record was S$119,980 raised in 2011.

CCF organises Hair for Hope.

It is a campaign in which participants shave their heads to show solidarity with cancer-stricken children.

Tan, who is also Grab’s co-founder, shaved his head on July 11 in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, where the company held a leadership retreat.

Grab Singapore's first Hair For Hope

This is first year Grab Singapore is taking part in the campaign.

Some 40 driver-partners took part too.

In total Grab had 107 participants.

It raised S$324,514 so far.

Grab's participation this round is considered a satellite event.

Satellite events are held in offices, schools and other places other than the main Hair for Hope event, which took place at VivoCity mall over the weekend.

Deeply personal

Tan said in a LinkedIn post a two weeks ago that the cause was deeply personal.

“My mother-in-law was a cancer patient and my wife, Chloe, remembers how losing her hair affected her," he wrote.

“I am a soon-to-be father of three and I can’t imagine the grief that these children and their families go through when they receive the diagnosis and start cancer treatment. This is my small way of standing in support with them.”

Multiple other Grab employees took part in the event for a variety of reasons, but many had brushes with health scares years ago that prompted their personal support for this cause.

Hair For Hope donations

Hair for Hope’s main event at VivoCity on Saturday and Sunday attracted 2,826 participants who shaved their heads.

More than 5,400 people shaved their heads as part of this year’s campaign, including at 52 satellite events.

The campaign has raised more than S$4 million so far.

It brought in about S$4.3 million in 2018.

Online donations close at the end of September.

Masayoshi Son, founder of Japan’s SoftBank Group, which invests in Grab, pitched in S$90,000.

Dara Khosrowshahi, chief executive officer of ride-hailing company Uber, gave S$10,000.

Uber sold its regional business to Grab in 2018.