Sobha group founder commits 50% of personal wealth to charity: report

Close on the heels of Wipro group chief Azim Premji pledging $2.3 billion of personal fortune to education-linked charity, the Dubai-based founder of Sobha Group of companies, PNC Menon, with an estimated wealth of $600 million, plans to give half of his wealth to charity, a news report said.

Menon, who started off in business by setting up an interior decoration firm in the Sultanate of Oman in 1976, is now chairman emeritus of one of the largest real estate groups, with interests in India and the Middle East.

A report in the Gulf-based Arabian Business newspaper quoted Menon as saying that he planned to open educational institutions in India and Oman.

"Once you make all of the money, I don't think you should keep all of it for your family. A large portion of it should go to society. I have decided that 50 per cent of mine should go to society," Menon told the newspaper.

"My view is very simple; I am lucky to have made my money. After a certain point in time, money cannot make a difference in your life. I feel that it's not even called charity, it's about accountability and the responsibility to society," he said.

The report, in a list of wealthy individuals published last month, had ranked Menon, with a personal wealth of $600 million, as the 21st richest Indian in the Gulf Cooperation Council.