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Philanthropist, Pratt, dies

Dan Goldberg reports for JTA from Sydney:

Richard Pratt, who fled Poland as a child on the eve of the Holocaust and went on to become one of Australia’s richest men and biggest Jewish philanthropists, died Tuesday at age 74.

The cause was cancer. Pratt will be buried Thursday in a traditional Jewish ceremony in Melbourne.

Called the "Cardboard King" for building a global packaging and recycling empire, Pratt was Australia’s fourth richest man, according to Business Review Weekly, with an estimated fortune of more than $3.8 billion. His Visy Industries employs more than 8,500 people worldwide, including some 3,000 people in the United States through the company’s American arm, the Georgia-based Pratt USA.

In 1978 Pratt and his wife, Jeanne, established The Pratt Foundation, which has given away some $140 million to charities, many of them Jewish, in Australia, Israel and the United States.

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