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Zuckerberg to donate his billions to charity

By Reuters in San Francisco | China Daily | Updated: 2015-12-03 07:49

Internet entrepreneur Mark Zuckerberg is to put 99 percent of his Facebook Inc shares - currently worth about $45 billion - into a new philanthropic project focusing on human potential and equality.

The move was announced by Zuckerberg and his wife on Tuesday in a letter to their newborn daughter.

The plan, which was posted on the Facebook founder and chief executive officer's page, attracted more than 570,000 "likes", including from singer Shakira, former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and Melinda Gates, wife of Microsoft founder Bill Gates.

The Gateses and other high-profile billionaires such as Warren Buffett have set up foundations of their own to dedicate their huge fortunes to philanthropic endeavors.

Zuckerberg, 31, who will control the new initiative jointly with his wife, Priscilla Chan, while remaining in charge of the world's largest online social network, said he would sell or give up to $1 billion in shares in each of the next three years.

He will keep a controlling stake in Facebook, valued at $303 billion at the close of trading on Tuesday, for what the company called the "foreseeable future".

According to Facebook, Zuckerberg owned 4 million Class A shares and 422.3 million Class B shares, which have 10 times the voting power of A shares. Combined, he held 54 percent of the voting power of the company's shares.

In welcoming the birth of his first child on his Facebook page, Zuckerberg posted a photo of himself, his wife and their daughter Maxima, nicknamed Max, along with a post entitled "A letter to our daughter".

In the 2,220-word letter, Zuckerberg and Chan touched on issues including health, education and learning before announcing the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, which aims to "advance human potential and promote equality".

Zuckerberg to donate his billions to charity

Facebook Inc Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla admire their daughter Maxima. Reuters

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