In a statement, Buffett did not say why he was leaving the foundation, but noted that he had already resigned from all boards other than Berkshire Hathaway. Buffett added that the foundation’s new CEO, Mark Suzman, is an “exceptional” selection and has his “full support”.
“My goals are 100% synchronized with those of the foundation, and my physical participation is in no way necessary to achieve those goals,” Buffett wrote.
Buffett and Bill Gates are close friends. His announcement comes about a month after Bill and Melinda Gates announced their divorce and subsequent reports of Gates’ inappropriate behavior with Microsoft employees decades ago.
The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation was established in 2000, and is funded by the couple’s personal fortune as well as several other Gates family foundations and a donation pledged by Buffett. Since 2000, the foundation has spent nearly $ 54 billion on a wide range of initiatives related to global health, poverty reduction and, most recently, the global deployment of Covid-19 vaccines, according to its website. .
The announcement of Buffett’s resignation was part of a larger statement about his philanthropic goals, in which Buffett noted that he had recently pledged $ 4.1 billion in Berkshire Hathaway ( stocks, putting him halfway toward his goal of giving away 99% of his net worth. He announced in 2006 that he would sell all of his company’s shares through donations. He has 238,624 Berkshire shares left. )
Buffett said Wednesday’s announcement was “not swan song” to him, despite the recent appointment of a successor.
“I always like to be on the pitch and carry the ball. But I’m clearly playing in a game that for me is past the fourth quarter in overtime, ”Buffett wrote.