Thursday 28 February 2019 10:20 am

Billionaire venture capitalist Sir Michael Moritz replaces Man Group as Booker Prize sponsor

Billionaire venture capitalist Sir Michael Moritz is the new sponsor of the Booker literary prize.

The sponsorship by Moritz and his wife Helena Heyman’s charitable foundation Crankstart comes after fund management firm Man Group stepped down from the role after 18 years.

Moritz, who was a journalist before moving into technology investment, has been a partner at Silicon Valley firm Sequoia Capital since 1986 and was an early backer of technology giants Paypal and Google.

Moritz, who is worth an estimated $3.4bn, said: “Neither of us can imagine a day where we don’t spend time reading a book. The Booker Prizes are ways of spreading the word about the insights, discoveries, pleasures and joy that spring from great fiction.

“These days I’m a global traveller but, just like The Booker, I was born in Britain and before coming to America was reared on English literature. Harriet and I feel fortunate to be able to support prizes that together celebrate the best fiction in the world."

The new sponsorship deal will begin on 1 June this year after the announcement of the 2019 Man Booker International Prize winner. 

Following the announcement the award will be called The Booker Prize, which is its original name, and the prize for literature in translation will become The International Booker Prize.