One of the wealthiest and most philanthropic couples in the world is splitting up. Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and his wife Melinda announced Monday their 27-year marriage is over. They revealed the news via a statement posted on each of their personal twitter accounts.
No further details on the cause of the breakup has been divulged. There is no doubt the divorce will have a major personal impact on the Gates family, but the split could also mean major ramifications globally. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is a philanthropic juggernaut, with nearly $50 billion in assets. Through the foundation, the Gates’ have had major influence on public health and business projects around the world due to its focus on expanding healthcare and fighting poverty in developing countries. Most Recently, the Gates Foundation donated $70 million to help develop COVID-19 vaccines and expand vaccine access in poorer nations. While the couple’s statement says they will remain partners running the foundation, it remains to be seen how the work of the foundation is impacted.
The divorce could yield one of the largest settlements in history due to the fact Bill Gates is worth an estimated $124 billion, according to Forbes. The couple met at Microsoft, while Bill was still CEO and Melinda worked on multimedia projects for the software giant.