Bill Gates Gives Out Highest Donation Since 2000

Why the rush Bill

Bill Gates has continued his philanthropic drive with his largest donation to charity since the year 2000. And Gates' stake in Microsoft has now shrunk to just 1.3 percent, compared to 24 percent in 1996. He has reportedly given away around 64 million worth of shares of Microsoft Corporation, which account for $4.6 billion in charity. In 1986, when the company went public, Gates held 45% (pdf) of its shares; in 1996, his stake had almost halved to 24%; and now, with his latest 64-million-share donation, he's down to a mere 1.3%, according to Bloomberg. They donated $16 billion worth of Microsoft shares in 1999, and $5.1 billion shares in 2000.

His most recent donation takes Gates' overall charitable pledges around the $50 billion mark. Those shares could be headed anywhere, but the best bet is the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which among many fine and admirable projects, is educating women and combating infectious diseases in poor, rural areas of the world. Microsoft stock now accounts for just 9 per cent of his overall net worth, which stood at an estimated $85.2 billion, according to Forbes.

Bill Gates donates $4.6 billion worth of Microsoft stock to his foundation
Gates listed for charity $4.6 billion

While most still have their jaws laying on the floor at the amount Gates recently donated, keep in mind, the former Microsoft CEO routinely purges himself of portions of his wealthy war chest. He was briefly overtaken by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos as the world's richest man on 27 July this year.

Bill and Melinda Gates have given away about US$35 billion of stock and cash since 1994, based on the value of the shares at the time of gifts, according to a review of two decades' worth of Gates Foundation tax returns, annual reports and regulatory filings.

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