Warren Buffett is donating roughly $3.6bn of Berkshire Hathaway stock to five charities including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the biggest contribution in Buffett’s plan to give away his fortune.
The donation will boost the total amount Buffett has given to the charities to more than $34.5bn since the 88-year-old billionaire pledged in 2006 to give his shares away. Buffett’s largest previous annual donation was $3.4bn in 2018.
Four-fifths of the donations go to the Gates Foundation. The rest goes to the Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, named for Buffett’s late first wife, and charities run by his children Howard, Susan and Peter: the Howard G Buffett Foundation, the Sherwood Foundation and the NoVo Foundation.
The Gates and family charities typically sell Buffett’s shares to finance their activities, reflecting his desire that money be spent.
Following the latest donation, Buffett will still own about 15.7% of Berkshire, despite having given away 45% of his 2006 holdings, and have roughly 31% of its voting power. Buffett remains the world’s fourth-richest person, worth $87.5bn according to Forbes magazine.