PORTLAND — Intel said Tuesday it will provide up to $50 million to assist in the global response to the coronavirus pandemic, providing tools for online learning and to help manufacturers produce the tools to fight the virus.
“These are challenging times. I’m really excited about the opportunity here to contribute our part,” said Rick Echevarria, an Intel vice president in Oregon who was previously managing the company’s relationship with the Olympics, which have been postponed until 2021. So he is now also manager of Intel’s new Pandemic Response and Technology Initiative.
“We all have to roll up our sleeves,” Echevarria said.
The chipmaker said most of the $50 million will go toward technology that helps make tools to diagnose and treat COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus, and to efforts to provide more students and schools with the technology they need for online learning. Intel said the assistance will enable PC donations, help create study-at-home guide and assist families getting connected online.
“Sometimes you need money to accelerate some of these innovations and collaborations,” Echevarria said.
Up to $10 million will go toward a fund to support relief projects in communities where Intel operates led by the company’s partners and employees. The company said those efforts include technology to speed coronavirus testing in India and ventilators in the United Kingdom.
“We’re very focused on high impact, high scale solutions,” Echevarria said. “You’ll be able to see and track our progress because it’s going to be how we continue to communicate our work.”
Previously, Intel had pledged $6 million from its foundation toward relief efforts, $1 million from Intel and its subsidiaries, and a donation of gloves, masks and other protective equipment to health care providers.
Intel is Oregon’s largest corporate employer, with 20,000 employees at its campuses in Washington County. The company said previously that it has continued operating on a relatively normal basis in Oregon and at its other manufacturing sites around the world.