According to HSUS’s 990-T and supplemental tax forms, the funds are invested as follows:
- $500,000 to Ascend Partners Fund I, L.P., a Cayman hedge fund
- $253,000 to BKM Holdings Ltd. (Caymans)
- $8 million to Fore Multi Strategy Offshore Fund, Ltd. (Caymans)
- $5 million to Hayman Capital Offshore Partners, L.P. (Bermuda)
- $6.7 million invested in Fir Tree International Value Fund (Caymans)
In its report, Humane Watch asked the obvious question: “Why would a U.S. charity be putting $26 million in the Caribbean?”
Allow me to answer that question. Ostensibly, HSUS is a non-profit that never tires of touting its track record in advocating for animal welfare. That’s what they say their mission is all about.
But like any other multi-million dollar organization these days, HSUS understands that parking money offshore provides valuable investment and tax benefits. Like spending the money the group raises through fund-raising on even more fund-raising, its “Caymans strategy” is justified because it’s in service to the noble cause of animal welfare.
But the bottom line for HSUS is clearly the bottom line. More money means more leverage. A bigger bank account funds high-level anti-industry campaigns. And the investment returns on a multi-million portfolio support “competitive” salaries for HSUS executives, plus extra cash to use in lobbying efforts.
Despite what their marketing materials claim, the group is not in the business of funneling cash to struggling local pet shelters and rescue operations, it’s priority is investing money in hedge funds to make as big a profit as possible.
As Humane Watch noted, “It’s hard to save animals when you’ve parked $25 million offshore.”
All those well-meaning donors who truly care about homeless and abandoned pets ought to simply write a check directly to their local shelter, rather than forking over cash to an organization that takes that donation and sticks it into an offshore bank account.
Hard to square that “strategy” with the crying need to support the local organizations doing the actual work of saving animals.
The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Dan Murphy, a veteran food-industry journalist and commentator.