Warren Buffett announced over the weekend he’ll be giving about $37 billion dollars away to charity. Most of it will be going to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, which focuses mainly on world health issues and improving libraries and schools here in the US. In all the foundation will oversee about $60 billion in assets. Invested fairly conservatively you could expect them to make about 7% on that money each year, which is about $4.2 billion a year. Accounting for inflation (3%) you’re still looking at $2.4 billion a year in revenue. And this isn’t accounting anyone else dropping a few billion into the piggy bank. That’s more 61 nations’ GDP’s for 2003.
Say what you want about Bill Gates, Microsoft, Warren Buffett and rich people in general. The fact remains that the Gateses and Buffett have created the largest charitable organization in the history of human kind. It has noble goals such as curing HIV/AIDS in Africa and improving our schools and libraries. And, honestly, how can you argue with their goal.
The foundation’s global health mission is to help ensure that lifesaving advances in health are created and shared with those who need them most.
ah, but the “invested fairly conservatively” statement rings untrue, as buffet has dictated to billy that all of the money he donates must be dispursed in the year it was donated. to wit, buffet, as i read a report, will be donating a pre-determined number of shares, which will diminish by 5% per year. as he states in his letter to william and melinda, the annual giving of BMG must be at least equal to the amount of his previous year’s donation. semantics to be sure. i only wish i had that kinda dough to toss around. incredible decision and gesture by the oracle of omaha.