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Flappy Bird Creator Launches VND1bn Fund to Help Local Inventors

In a surprising move, Flappy Bird creator and Vietnam’s most sought-after app developer Nguyen Ha Dong recently announced the launch of a personal fund to help local students realize their dream projects.

According to a post on Dong’s Facebook account, beginning in 2017, the Flappy Bird creator will earmark VND1 billion (US$44,100) of his own wealth to sponsor five student projects. Successful applicants will receive VND200 million (US$8,820) from Dong to procure necessary resources for their venture, such as equipment, materials and training. The top five projects will be hand-picked by Dong from a larger pool of submissions.

“For giving back society, from 2017, I'd like to provide funding for some projects of students in Vietnam or anywhere. Just propose those projects to me, no matter how bad it is,” the post reads. “Because of too many inquiries, I prioritize projects in these fields: Robotics, AI, Social, Community and Education. Students of all kind, including level of Master and PhD.”

In an interview with Tuoi Tre, Dong shared that he’s been working on this plan for years, but it wasn't until 2017 that he was able to pool together enough resources to get it up and running. Through this funding project, he aims to provide passionate students with enough financial support to make their dreams a reality.

“Potential proposals should be sent to and will be handpicked by me later,” the Hanoi-based developer told the media outlet. “I hope to find deserving candidates that could contribute to our country as well as bring to the table sustainable, interesting projects.”

Dong’s rise to fame was through 2014 sleeper hit Flappy Bird, a simple but infuriating mobile game that quickly became a global phenomenon. During its prime, Dong raked in as much as US$50,000 a day just by selling ads in the game interface. However, the pressure proved too much for the Hanoi native, as he eventually decided to ax the app altogether, much to the disappointment of players across the globe.

[Photo via NDH]

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