The 10 Most Generous Billionaires in the World

Photo (cc) by mira66

Some of the world’s wealthiest people also rank among the world’s most generous.

Business Insider recently partnered with the firm Wealth-X, which researches ultrahigh net worth individuals, to determine who are the most generous people worldwide based on their total lifetime charitable donations.

The result is a list 20 billionaires that overlaps with Forbes magazine’s list of the wealthiest people worldwide. In fact, the first two names on both lists are the same: Microsoft founder Bill Gates and Berkshire Hathaway Chairman and CEO Warren Buffett.

Gates, who runs the nonprofit Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation with his wife, has a net worth of $84.2 billion and has donated $27 billion over his lifetime, according to Wealth-X.

Buffett, who in 2006 promised to donate 85 percent of his wealth to nonprofits like the Gates Foundation, has a net worth of $61 billion and has donated $21.5 billion over his lifetime.

Gates and Buffett are also behind the Giving Pledge, an effort that encourages the world’s wealthiest people to commit to donating more than half their wealth to charitable causes.

The 20 philanthropists on Business Insider and Wealth-X’s list have collectively donated nearly $110 billion.

The top 10 names on the list — and how much they have given — are:

  • Bill Gates: $27 billion
  • Warren Buffett: $21.5 billion
  • George Soros: $8 billion
  • Azim Premji: $8 billion
  • Charles F. “Chuck” Feeney: $6.3 billion
  • Sulaiman bin Abdul Aziz Al Rajhi: $5.7 billion
  • Gordon Moore: $5 billion
  • Carlos Slim Helú: $4 billion
  • Eli Broad: $3.3 billion
  • George Kaiser: $3.3 billion

To evaluate each person’s charity relative to his wealth, Wealth-X also created a Generosity Index, a ratio of a person’s lifetime donations to current net worth. Business Insider reports:

Some people, like retail magnate Chuck Feeney, known as the “James Bond of philanthropy,” have indices over 100 percent because they have given away more money than they currently have.

Buffett earned a Generosity Index of 35 percent, while Gates earned a Generosity Index of 32 percent. By comparison, Feeney’s Generosity Index is 420,000 percent — the result of spending the past 30 years on a mission to give away his entire fortune.

What’s your take on the world’s wealthiest and their charitable giving? Sound off in our Forums. It’s the place where you can speak your mind, explore topics in-depth, and post questions and get answers.

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