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Jeff Bezos announces he is giving away most of his $124 billion fortune

Jeff Bezos announces he is giving away most of his $124 billion fortune

"The hard part is figuring out how to do it in a levered way"

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has announced plans to give away most of his $124 billion (£105 billion) fortune.

In a new interview with CNN, the 58-year-old said he intends on donating a majority of his riches to various charities during his lifetime.

Taking a leaf out of Bill Gates' book, the multi-billionaire told the outlet that he'll devote much of this chunk to tackling climate change and helping those who can unify society amid political and social division.

Bezos sat alongside his girlfriend Lauren Sánchez as the pair explained how they are working together to 'build the capacity to be able to give his money away'.

When asked by CNN's Chloe Melas whether he plans to donate most of his net worth in his life, he replied, "Yeah, I do," although he didn't give any names of causes or a specific percentage.

"The hard part is figuring out how to do it in a levered way," he said.

"It’s not easy. Building Amazon was not easy. It took a lot of hard work, a bunch of very smart teammates, hard-working teammates, and I’m finding – and I think Lauren is finding the same thing – that charity, philanthropy, is very similar."

Bezos continued: "There are a bunch of ways that I think you could do ineffective things, too. So you have to think about it carefully and you have to have brilliant people on the team."

The former Amazon CEO is behind the Bezos Earth Fund, which is focused on fighting climate change and protecting nature, and is co-chaired by Sánchez.

Jeff Bezos and his partner Lauren Sánchez told CNN about their charitable plans.

According to its site, the fund was set up after Bezos committed $10 billion to be disbursed as grants within the current decade.

He also recently awarded country music star Dolly Parton a $100 million prize for her philanthropy work.

Parton received the Bezos Courage and Civility Award from the couple at a ceremony which took place over the weekend.

Prior to announcing the winner, Sánchez explained that the award 'recognises leaders who aim high, find solutions, and who always do it with civility'.

"Each awardee wins $100 million (£85m) to direct to the charities that they see fit," she continued.

Bezos described Parton as a woman who 'embodies these ideals so thoroughly', and as someone who 'gives with her heart'.

Dolly Parton won the Bezos Courage and Civility Award.
Matthew Horwood/Alamy Stock Photo

Parton has long shown her dedication to charity, having founded a number of her own and previously donating $1m (£850,000) to Vanderbilt University's Medical Center to help develop a vaccine following the Covid outbreak.

In 1988, Parton established the Dollywood Foundation with the goal of helping children 'achieve educational success'.

The organisation later morphed into the Imagination Library; a program which posts books to children from birth to age five, regardless of their family's income.

Featured Image Credit: Shutterstock

Topics: Jeff Bezos, US News, World News, Money