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Bill Gates steps down from Microsoft board to focus on philanthropy

Billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates will step down from the board of Microsoft, the company he founded with childhood friend Paul Allen. One of the world’s richest men, Gates, has also left the board of Warren Buffett’s massive holding company, Berkshire Hathaway.

Gates, 65, says he wants to focus on global health and development, education and tackling climate change.

Billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates (Photo: cnbc.com)

“I have made the decision to step down from both of the public boards on which I serve – Microsoft– to dedicate more time to philanthropic priorities including global health and development, education, and my increasing engagement in tackling climate change,” Gates shared in a LinkedIn post today.

Having previously stepped down from his daily role at Microsoft in 2008, Gates assured the public he would always be engaged with the tech giant’s leadership.

Gates is currently listed by Forbes as the world’s second-richest man, having made his fortune developing software for the personal computer. His big break came in 1980 when he inked a deal with IBM to build the operating system that became known as MS-DOS.

In 1986, Microsoft went public and within a year Gates, at 31, had become the youngest self-made billionaire.

Along with wife, Melinda, Gates topped the Philanthropy 50 list for the fourth time, thanks to the $4.8 billion they donated to their foundation in 2017.