Bill Gates, co-founder and former CEO of Microsoft, revealed that he and his wife, Melinda Gates, will be splitting up after 27 years.
The couple has three children, Jennifer, Phoebe, and Rory Gates.
The couple released a statement on Twitter, saying: "After a great deal of thought and a lot of work on our relationship, we have made the decision to end our marriage,"
The tech mogul added that they "no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in this next phase of our lives,"
He noted that they had raised “three incredible children” and worked to help people all over the world.
Bill and Melinda met at Microsoft. She had been a marketing manager at the software company.
The two got married in Hawaii in 1994 after Bill Gates had weighed the pros and cons on a blackboard.
Read our Bill Gates live blog below for the very latest news and updates…
Catherina Gioino 50 minutes ago
PAPERS FILED FOR DIVORCE WITH NO PRENUP
Bill and Melinda Gates have filed for divorce, and court documents show there is no prenup agreement.
According to TMZ , which has seen the court documents, the Gates have filed for divorce, saying their marriage is “irretrievably broken.”
The document asks for the judge to make their pre-signed separation date as their divorce date. The separation papers were not included in the divorce document.
The two have asked for a trial date in April 2022, but will likely settle this without a trial.
Catherina Gioino 3rd May 2021, 00:43
JENNIFER GATES RESPONDS TO PARENTS’ SPLIT
Jennifer Gates, the 25-year-old daughter of Bill and Melinda Gates, posted on Instagram that her family has been experiencing "a challenging stretch of time.”
“Hi friends, by now many of have heard the news that my parents are separating,” she wrote.
“I'm still learning how to best support my own process and emotions as well as my family members at this time and am grateful for the space to do so.”
She added that she won’t personally comment on her parents’ separation but said she thanked those who sent her messages and kind words during this time.
Catherina Gioino 3rd May 2021, 00:18
BILL GATES, THE FOURTH RICHEST MAN IN THE WORLD
The Microsoft co-founder , the world's fourth-richest man with a networth of $124 billion, currently owns 1.37 percent of Microsoft's outstanding shares, which are worth more than $26 billion.
Bill created a pledge with Melinda and fellow billionaire Warren Buffett called the Giving Pledge, which would involve anyone who signed on to give more than half of their wealth to charitable causes.
The couple decided to move $20 billion worth of Microsoft stock to their foundation as they wanted to increase their commitment to philanthropy. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has more than $51 billion in assets and has invested more than $1.75 billion to fight the Covid-19 pandemic.
Bill is the world’s fourth richest person, behind Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, LVMH's Bernard Arnault and Tesla's Elon Musk.
Catherina Gioino 3rd May 2021, 23:59
BIL’S AND MELINDA’S PROJECTS THROUGH RECENT YEARS
The Gates have been running the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation since 2000, when Bill stepped down as Microsoft CEO to run the foundation full time.
In recent years, the couple began focusing on other areas of interest.
In 2015, Bill established Breakthrough Energy, an initiative intended to show climate change, which also includes a venture arm.
Melinda that same year created Pivotal Ventures, a company that makes investments to increase equality.
For the foundation, the couple published annual letters regarding the foundation’s work.
The latest one , published in January, spoke to the impact of the pandemic and their efforts in bringing vaccines worldwide.
"For us, the days became a blur of video meetings, troubling news alerts, and microwaved meals," they wrote.
Catherina Gioino 3rd May 2021, 23:45
MELINDA “IS A TRULY EQUAL PARTNER” BILL SAYS
Marking 25 years of marriage in 2019, Bill and Melinda sat down for the Netflix documentary Inside Bill’s Brain and spoke about their marriage.
“In the case of Melinda, it is a truly equal partner,” Bill said. “She's a lot like me in that she is optimistic and she is interested in science.
“She is better with people than I am. She's a tiny bit less hardcore about knowing, you know, immunology, than I am,” he joked.
For Valentine’s Day in 2020, Bill Gates posted an Instagram photo showing him standing with his arm around Melinda, with the caption reading “I couldn't ask for a better partner on this journey.”
Catherina Gioino 3rd May 2021, 23:34
BILL AND MELINDA MET BECAUSE THEY WERE LATE TO DINNER
The star power couple originally met by chance after both arrived late to a dinner and sat in the only two empty seats.
In her book, The Moment of Lift, Melinda described how they were both invited to a business dinner and ended up sitting next to each other.
“I showed up late, and all the tables were filled except one, which still had two empty chairs side by side. I sat in one of them. A few minutes later, Bill arrived and sat in the other,” she wrote in the book.
Melinda was a product manager as the only woman in the first ever class of MBA graduates that joined the company.
She then rose the corporate ladder to become general manager of information products, and eventually met the CEO, Bill.
The two then married in Hawaii in 1994.
Catherina Gioino 3rd May 2021, 23:16
BILL AND MELINDA DISH ON HOW THEY DECIDED TO GET MARRIED
A year before Bill and Melinda Gates got married in 1994, they had a “whiteboard” discussion on the prospect of marriage.
“His whiteboard had the pros and the cons of getting married,” Melinda said in the 2019 documentary Inside Bill’s Brain.
The whiteboard, however, was not symbolic of the marriage, with Bill saying in the 2019 doc that he took marriage “very seriously.”
"She had other boyfriends, and I had Microsoft," Bill said. "We were like, 'Hey we are not really serious about each other, are we? We are not going to demand each other's time.'”
"I was new to Microsoft, there were a lot of men there and … you are still looking around,” Melinda agreed.
Catherina Gioino 3rd May 2021, 23:02
BEING WITH BILL WAS “INCREDIBLY HARD,” MELINDA SAID IN 2019
There were times that being married to Bill Gates were “incredibly hard,” Melinda said in 2019 when the couple celebrated their 25th anniversary together.
"When he was having trouble making the decision about getting married, he was incredibly clear that it was not about me, it was about 'Can I get the balance right between work and family life?'” she told The Sunday Times in 2019.
In the 2019 documentary Inside Bill’s Brain, Melinda described how Bill came to the conclusion of getting married.
“His whiteboard had the pros and the cons of getting married,” Melinda said in the documentary.
Catherina Gioino 3rd May 2021, 22:56
A 27-YEAR MARRIAGE THAT STARTED AT MICROSOFT
Bill and Melinda Gates met each other in 1987 at Microsoft. Bill, the world’s fourth-richest man, had just founded and was CEO for the tech company, and Melinda was a 24-year-old who had just gotten a job there.
They got married seven years later in 1994. A year later, Bill became the richest man in the entire world.
The two went on to found the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in 1999 with the mission of fighting “poverty, disease and inequity around the world.”
The foundation is considering one of the world’s largest private charities, with the couple investing more than $1.75 billion to fight Covid-19.
Bill stepped down from his role on Microsoft’s board of directors to focus more on the foundation last March.
Catherina Gioino 3rd May 2021, 22:48
BILL GATES EXPLAINS DECISION TO END MARRIAGE
After the world found out Bill and Melinda Gates were splitting up by Twitter, Bill explained how they came to their bombshell decision.
“Over the last 27 years, we have raised three incredible children and built a foundation that works all over the world to enable people to lead healthy, productive lives,” he wrote.
“We continue to share a belief in that mission and will continue our work together at the foundation, but we no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in this next phase of our lives. We ask for space and privacy for our family as we begin to navigate this new life.”
Catherina Gioino 3rd May 2021, 22:38
BILL AND MELINDA GATES SPLIT AFTER 27 YEARS OF MARRIAGE
Billionaire philanthropists Bill and Melinda Gates announced their separation on Twitter earlier today, shocking the world after calling their 27-year marriage over.
The Microsoft co-founder , the world’s fourth richest man with a networth of $124 billion, posted the news to his Twitter account.
“After a great deal of thought and a lot of work on our relationship, we have made the decision to end our marriage,” read his tweet.
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