This is no Internet hoax: The seventh richest man in the world is now a dad, and has pledged to give away 99 percent of his wealth to leave his daughter “a much better world.”
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s wife, Pricilla Chan, gave birth to a healthy baby girl last week, and Tuesday the billionaire posted the birth announcement—on Facebook, where else?
The post, titled “A letter to our daughter,” promises that her parents will help make her life “dramatically better than ours today.”
We will give 99% of our Facebook shares — currently about $45 billion — during our lives to advance this mission. We know this is a small contribution compared to all the resources and talents of those already working on these issues. But we want to do what we can, working alongside many others.
That leaves the newest Zuckerberg family member with only a $450 million nest egg. According to Forbes, Zuckerberg is worth $46.8 billion, but who’s counting?
In his letter, 31-year-old Zuckerberg announced a new organization called the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, that will pursue goals of advancing human potential and promoting equality. The initiative won’t be a traditional charity, however—it will be a limited liability company, a corporate structure normally used in for-profit ventures.
“They want the most flexibility and they are going to use a wide variety of activities to achieve their mission,” Rachael Horwitz, a Facebook spokeswoman, said via email, according to a Fox News report Tuesday. “So in that way this is not a foundation nor is it entirely charitable.”
With over $44 billion behind it, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative will become an overnight powerhouse in the philanthropy world, eclipsing the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, which has a $41 billion endowment, including wealth pledged by the Microsoft founder and Berkshire Hathaway billionaire Warren Buffett.
Unlike Gates, who spends most of his time working for his foundation, Zuckerberg will focus on his day job, and on being a new dad. Last month, Zuckerberg told the Associated Press “I have a full time job running Facebook.” But he said he plans to take two months of paternity leave to make the adjustment to parenthood.
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