Bill Gates Donates $20 Billion to Foundation, Plans to Drop from List of World's Wealthiest People

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Bill Gates, co-chairman of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, during a panel session on day two of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, on Tuesday, May 24, 2022. The annual Davos gathering of political leaders, top executives and celebrities runs from May 22 to 26. Photographer: Hollie Adams/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Bill Gates, co-chairman of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, during a panel session on day two of the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Davos, Switzerland, on Tuesday, May 24, 2022. The annual Davos gathering of political leaders, top executives and celebrities runs from May 22 to 26. Photographer: Hollie Adams/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Hollie Adams/Bloomberg/Getty

Bill Gates will no longer be on the list of the world's wealthiest people.

On Wednesday, the Microsoft co-founder, 66, announced on Twitter and in a blog post that he plans to transfer $20 billion of his personal wealth into the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation's endowment this month.

The donation by Gates — who established the foundation with ex-wife Melinda French Gates in 2000 — will allow the organization to increase its spending from $6 billion to $9 billion per year by 2026, according to the announcement.

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"I will move down and eventually off of the list of the world's richest people," Gates shared in his blog post. "My giving this money is not a sacrifice at all. I feel privileged to be involved in tackling these great challenges."

He continued, "I believe I have an obligation to return my resources to society in ways that have the greatest impact for improving lives."

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The additional funds will be used to support the foundation's causes including fighting poverty, diseases and inequity around the world.

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Gates also opened up about his financial future in the blog post.

"My plan is to give all my wealth to the foundation other than what I spend on myself and my family," he wrote. "I do some giving and investing in U.S. health care issues, including Alzheimer's, outside the foundation. Through Breakthrough Energy, I will continue to invest and give money to address climate change. Overall I expect that the work in these areas will make money, which will also go to the foundation."

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Melinda Gates, Bill Gates
Melinda Gates, Bill Gates

KAMIL ZIHNIOGLU/AFP via Getty Melinda French Gates, Bill Gates

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Gates is currently ranked as the world's fourth-richest person with an estimated $113 billion net worth, according to Bloomberg's Billionaires Index.

In 2010, the tech entrepreneur and his ex-wife — who divorced in 2021 — alongside Warren Buffett created The Giving Pledge in which "40 of America's wealthiest people made a commitment to give the majority of their wealth to address some of society's most pressing problems," according to its website.