Warren Buffett on Wednesday reached the halfway mark in giving away all of his Berkshire Hathaway stock, more than 99% of his net worth, to charity and resigned from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s board.
Buffett, 90, gave $4.1 billion worth of Berkshire stock to five foundations, lowering his stake to 238,624 shares, worth about $100 billion. In 2006, he pledged to give away all 474,998 of his Berkshire shares to philanthropy.
Foundations receiving the money include the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, Sherwood Foundation, Howard G. Buffett Foundation and NoVo Foundation.
"The easiest deed in the world is to give away money that will never be of any real use to you or your family," Buffett said in a news release. As of Tuesday, he was the world’s eighth richest person, worth $105 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
Buffett’s annual distribution this year came with the news that he would resign as a trustee of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation whose founders Bill Gates and Melinda French Gates are going through a public divorce.
With Buffett’s resignation, he has stepped down from all corporate boards other than Berkshire Hathaway’s.
"My goals are 100% in sync with those of the foundation, and my physical participation is in no way needed to achieve these goals," Buffett said.