Jeff Bezos, in Joint Interview with Lauren Sánchez, Says He'll Give Away Most of His $124 Billion Fortune

Jeff Bezos Says He’ll Give Away Most of His $124 Billion Wealth
Jeff Bezos Says He’ll Give Away Most of His $124 Billion Wealth

Michael M. Santiago/Getty

Jeff Bezos has acquired $124 billion over his lifetime — and now says he plans to give most of it away.

The Amazon founder, 58, told CNN exclusively that he will primarily focus on fighting climate change and supporting others who can help improve the deep divide over social and political issues. Though he didn't go into a detailed game-plan for giving away his billions, Bezos is only just announcing this highly charitable pledge.

As CNN points out, Bezos has not signed the Giving Pledge, a promise hundreds of the world's richest people made to donate the majority of their earnings to various charitable causes.

But during his interview with Chloe Melas at his D.C. home on Saturday, Bezos — alongside his partner Lauren Sánchez — said he is "building the capacity to be able to give away this money."

When Melas asked whether he intends to donate the majority of his wealth within his lifetime, he simply replied, "Yeah, I do."

This is the first time the couple has done an interview together, which they agreed to do in light of the Bezos Courage and Civility Award that they just awarded to country music icon Dolly Parton for $100 million to aid in her own charitable efforts.

"The hard part is figuring out how to do it in a levered way," he said of his philanthropic strategy, which will be similar to his tech-building savvy. "It's not easy. Building Amazon was not easy. It took a lot of hard work, a bunch of very smart teammates, hard-working teammates, and I'm finding — and I think Lauren is finding the same thing — that charity, philanthropy, is very similar."

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Jeff Bezos and Lauren Sanchez
Jeff Bezos and Lauren Sanchez

James Veysey/Shutterstock Jeff Bezos and Láuren Sanchez

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"There are a bunch of ways that I think you could do ineffective things, too," he added. "So you have to think about it carefully and you have to have brilliant people on the team."

For starters, Bezos has committed to giving roughly 8% of his current net worth, around $10 billion over 10 years, to the Bezos Earth Fund, which Sánchez co-chairs.

She told Melas that they make "really great teammates," however, "We can be kind of boring," Sánchez said, laughing.

"Never boring," Bezos replied while cracking a smile.

Rome, ITALY - American Billionaire Jeff Bezos and his partner Lauren Sanchez spend the day sightseeing as they enjoyed a trip to The Colosseum during their holiday in Rome, Italy. Pictured: Jeff Bezos, Lauren Sanchez BACKGRID USA 15 OCTOBER 2022 BYLINE MUST READ: Cobra Team / BACKGRID USA: +1 310 798 9111 / usasales@backgrid.com UK: +44 208 344 2007 / uksales@backgrid.com *UK Clients - Pictures Containing Children Please Pixelate Face Prior To Publication*
Rome, ITALY - American Billionaire Jeff Bezos and his partner Lauren Sanchez spend the day sightseeing as they enjoyed a trip to The Colosseum during their holiday in Rome, Italy. Pictured: Jeff Bezos, Lauren Sanchez BACKGRID USA 15 OCTOBER 2022 BYLINE MUST READ: Cobra Team / BACKGRID USA: +1 310 798 9111 / usasales@backgrid.com UK: +44 208 344 2007 / uksales@backgrid.com *UK Clients - Pictures Containing Children Please Pixelate Face Prior To Publication*

Cobra Team / BACKGRID

While discussing reports of Bezos potentially buying the Washington Commanders football team, the former Amazon CEO, now the company's executive chair, once again answered playfully.

"Yes," he said, "I've heard that buzz."

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"I grew up in Houston, Texas, and I played football growing up as a kid … and it is my favorite sport … so we'll just have to wait and see," Bezos added.

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"I do like football," Sánchez chimed in, "I'm just going to throw that out there for everyone."

As far as other similar interests to her partner, the adventurous helicopter pilot told CNN she anticipates heading to space sometime in 2023 with an all-female crew.

"It'll be a great group of females," she teased.