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Booker Prize for Fiction Secures New Financial Backer

Friday Mar 1, 2019
In this Oct. 16, 2018 file photo, author Anna Burns smiles after being presented with the Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2018 for "Milkman," during the prize's 50th year at the Guildhall in London
In this Oct. 16, 2018 file photo, author Anna Burns smiles after being presented with the Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2018 for "Milkman," during the prize's 50th year at the Guildhall in London  (Source:AP Photo/Frank Augstein, File)

Britain's leading literary award, the Booker Prize, found a new financial backer Thursday after its sponsor of almost two decades pulled out.

Prize trustees said the Crankstart Foundation will become the sponsor in June. The charity was founded by Silicon Valley venture capitalist Michael Moritz and his wife, writer Harriet Heyman.

Crankstart has committed to funding the Booker Prize for English-language novels and the International Booker Prize for translated works for at least five years.

The prize's previous sponsor, the investment firm Man Group PLC, announced last month that it was stopping its funding after 18 years.

Founded in 1969, the 50,000-pound ($67,000) Booker Prize was originally open to writers from Britain, Ireland and the Commonwealth. U.S. authors became eligible in 2014, a move that remains contentious.

Anna Burns won the 2018 prize for her novel "Milkman."

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