Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan said on Tuesday that they will give away 99 percent of their Facebook shares, currently worth about US$45 billion, to a charity during their lifetime.
They made the announcement in a letter addressed to their new-born daughter on the national day of giving, the so-called #GivingTuesday.
In the 2,220-word letter posted on Zuckerberg’s Facebook page, the social media entrepreneur and his wife touched on issues including health, education, Internet access and learning before announcing the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative.
The initiative, which aims to “advance human potential and promote equality”, mirrors a move by other high-profile billionaires like Warren Buffett and Bill and Melinda Gates, who have pledged and set up foundations to give away their fortunes to charity, Reuters noted.
In the post entitled ‘A letter to our daughter’, Zuckerberg and Chan said they intend to give away 99 percent of their Facebook shares over their lifetimes to advance the initiative, which was formed as a limited liability company controlled by the two.
It will begin by focusing on personalized learning, curing disease, Internet connectivity and community building.
Zuckerberg and his wife had a baby daughter, Max, early last week.
The Facebook chief announced earlier that he will take two months of paternity leave after the birth of his daughter.
Zuckerberg said he still plans to remain CEO of Facebook for “many, many years to come”.
Facebook, meanwhile, said Zuckerberg is expected to be the controlling stockholder of the firm for the foreseeable future.
The CEO has committed to give away up to US$1 billion of Facebook stock each year for the next three years, the company said.
– Contact us at [email protected]