Zuckerberg To Donate 99% Of Shares To Philanthropy Project

December 2, 2015
Zuckerberg To Donate 99% Of Shares To Philanthropy Project August 21, 2018 Lennox Hamilton

Mark Zuckerberg, Priscilla Chan and Maxima Chan ZuckerbergFacebook founder Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan became parents for the first time late last week when their daughter Maxima Chan Zuckerberg was born. Zuckerberg and Chan wrote a letter entitled ‘A letter to our daughter‘ that was a little over 2000 words to Maxima as they wanted to make an important decision concerning their wealth and what they wanted to do with in the near future.

The letter addresses a number of topics such as a education, internet access and healthcare before touching on a special project called the ‘Chan Zuckerberg Initiative’, which will look to ‘advance human potential and promote equality’. Zuckerberg and Chang also confirmed that they had decided to give away 99% of their Facebook shares during their lifetime to this project which has been registered as a limited liability company.

The project will focus on a number of key areas but will start with developing innovative technology that will enable students to access information from different locals and learn. The 99% shares that Zuckerberg and Chang will give away are currently estimated to be around $45 billion. Zuckerberg released this information via his Facebook page and the post had more than 570,000 “likes” in a short period of time. Some of the likes came from well known entrepreneurs and celebrities including Melinda Gates, the wife of Bill Gates, Pop sensation Shakira and Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Billionaire Investor Warren Buffet who pledged Berkshire Hathaway shares valued at around $31 billion to the Gates Foundation in 2006 also appreciated the gesture of the Facebook founder. In a Facebook post, Buffet said

Mark and Priscilla are breaking the mold with this breathtaking commitment. A combination of brains, passion and resources on this scale will change the lives of millions. On behalf of future generations, I thank them.

The 31 year old Facebook founder has committed to selling or giving away $1 billion in shares during the next 3 years but has also confirmed that he has no plans of stepping down as the CEO of Facebook and wanted to continue for many years to come. Zuckerberg’s controlling stake in Facebook is estimated to be around $303 billion and a recent proxy statement confirmed that he had 4 million Class A shares and 422.3 million Class B shares. The Class B shares have a higher value as it gives Zuckerberg ten times more voting power than the Class A shares. As of now Zuckerberg has shares that allow him to have 54% of voting power in Facebook and a controlling stake.

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