Bill Gates, the billionaire co-founder of Microsoft, has vowed to give away so much money to philanthropic causes that he will eventually "drop off" the world's rich list. With a net worth of over $100 billion and currently standing as the 5th richest human on Earth, that’s potentially a hell of a lot of money.
“As I look to the future, I plan to give virtually all of my wealth to the foundation. I will move down and eventually off of the list of the world’s richest people,” Gates tweeted on Wednesday.
The bold proclamation came as Gates vowed to make a $20 billion donation to the philanthropic fund he set up with his now ex-wife Melinda, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The foundation has its fingers in many pies, but they say its primary goals are to enhance global health and reduce extreme poverty across the world.
Although the fund bears the former partners' names, Gates explains that around half of its resources actually come from Warren Buffett, the world's eighth-wealthiest person.
In an accompanying blog post, he wrote that the charitable foundation aims to spend $9 billion a year by 2026. This, Gates explains, is in response to the giant problems the world has seen in recent years – including the COVID-19 pandemic, the Russian invasion of Ukraine, political polarization in the US, and the mounting impacts of climate change.
“Against this backdrop, the pandemic is one of the biggest setbacks in history,” Gates wrote.