This year’s donation is Buffett’s largest contribution to date: it comprised close to 17.7 million Class B shares, which were valued at $192 a share when the market closed on Monday.
The stock went to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, as well as charities run by him and his children, including the Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, Sherwood Foundation, Howard G. Buffett Foundation, and NoVo Foundation. The Gates Foundation received the largest share of the stock, totaling 13.5 million shares, worth close to $2.6 billion.
Since 2006, Buffett has donated over $30 billion to charity, of which $24.5 billion went to the Gates Foundation. When Buffett explained his decision to donate much of his wealth to his family’s foundations and Gates in 2007, he told shareholders that he believes in giving his excess wealth to people who are “energized, working hard at it, smart.”
“You know, the truth is, I haven’t given away anything in a practical matter,” he continued. “I have everything in life I want. You know, there’s no way I can sleep better, I can eat better. Other people might think I could eat better.”
“I haven’t given up anything,” Buffett concluded.
Buffett pledged to incrementally give away all his shares of Berkshire Hathaway in 2006.