Questions about MaidSafe Foundation

Hope I’m not stepping on any toes here but as an investor and supporter of MaidSafe I’m interested in learning more about the MaidSafe Foundation. Currently, I am aware that the Foundation:

  1. Owns all the patents associated with MaidSafe
  2. Owns 50% of the shares of MaidSafe
  3. Loaned MaidSafe 24 million MaidSafeCoins to help support and promote the network/project
  4. Operates or plans to operate such charitable endeavors as Fab Lab, Learning Centre and various commercial and social enterprises
  5. Justine McLevy, a forum member, has spoken of Foundation affairs on the forum in the past

As such, the Foundation represents a powerful and influential body in the MaidSafe realm. My questions are:

  1. Is Justine McLevy a trustee of the charitable foundation?
  2. Who are the other trustees?
  3. Do we even have the right to know who these trustees are?
  4. Are any other trustees active in the forum? If so, who are they?
  5. Is there a board or group within the Foundation that votes on matters relevant to investors and/or supporters of MaidSafe?
  6. Who are the members of this board or group?
  7. How are the trustees appointed? Is there a regular turnover of this group? Are elections held or is the original group of trustees deemed “permanent”?
  8. Do any trustees or representatives of the Foundation sit on the Board of Directors of MaidSafe? If they own 50% of MaidSafe, I would assume so.
  9. How many board members of MaidSafe are members of the Foundation?
  10. How closely aligned are the goals of the Foundation and MaidSafe?

Again, maybe these questions are out of line. Maybe it is better for the MaidSafe Foundation to operate as a “shadow” organization. Please accept my apologies if I have intruded where I should not have.


Can’t answer any of these questions specifically, but the answers are all available indirectly. The foundation is a charity under Scottish law, which is very strict about charities, including accountability, transparency etc. So somebody may answer on the forum, but you or anyone else can get the answers more directly and definitively through official legal channels.

Not yet.

They still hold most of those coins. The addresses are in the forum, I don’t have the link at the moment.


They are in public documents, so yes and no I don’t have links. I guess you need to go to the UK charities website and look it up


And the rest I dunno

1 Like

No worries, there’s a huge number of questions to answer when you are as public as we are, it’s part of the job. Most of what you ask is public respectful and understandable, it is all public, however to make it easier.

The Trustees are three people, David Allan, Fraser Hutchison and John Irvine

David and Fraser are also on the MaidSafe board.

In terms of closely aligned goals, then it’s not so simple. The foundation has charitable models it must follow. These are all about Education and Innovations (Fab Labs etc.).
MaidSafe are a private company who do marketing, raise investments, hire and fire etc.

In Scotland a charity cannot act like a company, it must act purely for it’s models and no more. There is strong checking and regulation. MaidSafe needs to be able to “move” as the Sundance Kid would say :wink: so it can do a bunch of things like crowdsale etc., the foundation could not and could not be involved.

The foundation owns 5% of all safecoin when it’s launched, so each shareholder in maidsafe can sell their shares to the foundation for these safecoins (I think about 106 safecoins per share or thereabouts). This means the foundation will own 100% of maidsafe over time, if investors agree to sell/swap for safecoin.

I appointed the trustees and excluded myself to allow the foundation to pursue the models I wanted, but I did not want to be seen as able to sway the foundation at all, and I cannot. They will listen to me but are bound by their own models and they are all their own folk.

Anyhow I hope that helps you see the picture a bit more.

The foundation owns shares I gave it, so it got my shares and cost the shareholders nothing, no dilution etc. but is often used against me as a source of weakness, as folk think I would give everything away and would not recognise profits etc. It is not like that, I am more logical than that and can count :wink: It is there because it’s better to start with a foundation rather than make a lot of cash and donate like some super hero (i would consider it a fail), but also, instead of me being so powerful in board meetings etc. there are large shareholders who are their for the benefit of those I really would like to see get a better start. It helps and makes sense to be strong like that, instead of weak and needing to grab/cling to an invisible power over others.

Overall it makes the board stronger and the companies vision more likely to succeed.


Thank you, David, for this information. As usual, your candidness is both refreshing and reassuring. The MaidSafe project is fortunate, indeed, to have you at the helm.