Bill Gates may have made his fortune with Microsoft, but the founder has been stepping away from the company and towards philanthropy for several years. Now, a recent SEC filing reveals that Gate’s made a gift of 64 million shares in June.
The giveaway is his biggest since 2000, and representing around 38% of his current ownership and bringing his personal stake down to approximately 1.3%. The shares are valued at $4.6 billion, a far cry from the 1999 donation of $16 billion, but still a significant number.
The recipient of the gift is unknown, but Bloomberg speculates it’s part of his regular donations to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. According to Bloomberg, Gates has probably directed over 700 million shares into the foundation, worth $50 billion if he had held onto them.
Despite this, Gates remains the richest man alive, with a worth of $86.1 billion. The drop, however, does but Amazon’s Jeff Bezos closer to the accolade.
Bill Gates Role in Microsoft
Whatever his stake, Bill Gates will remain an influential man at Microsoft, though he doesn’t work at the company anymore. The 61-year-old still remains a board member and advisor to current CEO Satya Nadella, particularly in the area of Office.
It’s clear, however, that he no longer sees it as his main purpose. His foundation is now one of the largest transparently operated in the world and has funded Malaria control, health policy, sanitation, and development schemes across the planet.
Most recently, he joined Instagram, posting a photo from Tanzania, where he had lunch with Muheza school children.
Hello from Tanzania, Instagram! I just had a great lunch with some amazing kids at Kicheba Primary School in Muheza and met Upendo Mwingira, a remarkable physician who has dedicated her career to fighting neglected tropical diseases. Melinda and I have been coming to Tanzania for many years now. I always love seeing how much progress the country has made to improve health and provide opportunity. Plus, the scenery is stunning. Whenever I travel to places like this, I wish others could come along and meet the people I get to meet. I have no doubt it would leave them as optimistic as I am about progress happening around the world. I’ll be sharing photos from my adventures here on Instagram, and I hope you’ll follow along.
This latest gift appears to simply be an extension his Giving Pledge, where he joined 168 others by promising to give the majority of his wealth to charity.