Microsoft co-founder pledges fortune to philanthropy

16 Jul 2010

The co-founder of Microsoft Paul Allen has pledged the majority of his estimated US$13.5bn fortune to philanthropy following his death.

Allen set up his own charitable foundation, the Paul G Allen Family Foundation, 20 years ago.

Over the past 20 years, Allen’s contributions to the foundation have resulted in more than 3,000 grants totalling more than US$400m. In addition to contributions to his family foundation, he has provided US$600m directly to non-profits he has founded for a total of more than US$1bn in personal giving.

“I want to announce that my philanthropic efforts will continue after my lifetime,” Allen said in a statement issued yesterday. “I’ve planned for many years now that the majority of my estate will be left to philanthropy to continue the work of the foundation and to fund non-profit scientific research.”

Allen (57) founded Microsoft with Bill Gates in 1975 but retired from the company in 1983. He is the 37th richest person in the world, according to Forbes magazine.

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