Macquarie Telecom steps up political donations

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Macquarie Telecom steps up political donations

Optus directs more money to Labor.

Macquarie Telecom has boosted its donations to Australian political parties, providing $133,500 to state and federal Labor and Liberal Party branches last financial year.

The telco and data centre operator favoured the Liberal Party, donating $55,000 to the party, with an additional $33,000 for the Liberal National Party of Queensland. It donated $45,500 to the Labor Party.

Macquarie Telecom was noticeably absent from the 2010-11 donor list, which saw Optus lead the list of telecommunications companies providing donations.

Optus increased donations in 2011-12, with $70,750 for state and federal Labor branches, and $47,390 for state and federal coalition branches, making a combined spend of $118,140. It donated $86,252 to state and federal Labor and coalition branches in 2010-11.

Macquarie Telecom is investing $14 million in a Canberra-based data centre specifically designed to securely host data for government agencies. 

The telco is also part of a group pushing for the development of an Australian cloud computing hub. The group has called for the government to become a model user of cloud services in order to demonstrate cloud practices to the Australian business community.

iTnews makes no suggestion of any impropriety relating to these donors and the political parties involved.

Both Macquarie Telecom and Optus are traditionally the biggest technology industry donors.

Many other ICT players did not appear on the year’s list of donations, with eBay absent after donating $13,750 to the Labor Party in 2010-11.

Film studio Village Roadshow scaled back its political donations to $257,850, after donating almost $850,000 in 2010-11. Village Roadshow was one of a number of film studios that last year lost a High Court appeal in a landmark case against ISP iiNet over illegal internet downloads.

Consultancies KPMG, Pricewaterhousecoopers and Deloitte collectively donated $304,729 to state and federal branches of both political parties.

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