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With $2 bn in charity, Jeff Bezos is top donor of 2018

By Aslam Hunani
Last updated on: February 26, 2019 08:30 IST
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Here are the top 10 philanthropists of 2018!

Yes, you heard it right!

Jeff Bezos, Amazon CEO, tops 2018's Philanthropy 50 list, according to the Chronicle of Philanthropy's list of those giving away their wealth to charity.

The list comprises top 50 US donors who gave away their wealth for charitable purposes.

In 2018, the total wealth donated by these people stood at $7.8 billion, as compared to $14.7 billion in 2017.

Incidentally, Jeff Bezos, who holds the top position, is a new entrant on the list.


Well known philanthropists Bill and Melinda Gates fell to the 12th place in 2018 from No. 1 in 2017, giving away an estimated $138 million to their Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg and his wife Priscilla Chan were ranked at the 7th position as compared to the 2nd position in 2017, when they had donated $2 billion for charitable causes.

Former mayor of New York City, Michael Bloomberg, has been ranked at No. 2 in 2018.

Pierre Omidyar, the founder of eBay, and wife Pam Omidyar were ranked 9th in 2017 when they had donated $257.5 million, but in 2018 the couple donated generously and have been upgraded to the 3rd position.

Check out the top 10 philanthropists for 2018!

#1. Jeff and MacKenzie Bezos ($2 billion)
Amazon CEO Jeff and wife MacKenzie Bezos. Photograph: Danny Moloshok/Reuters

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos and his wife MacKenzie launched Bezos Day One Fund, by donating $2,000,000,000 ($2 billion) for philanthropic causes.

The purpose of the Bezos Day One Fund was to help homeless families and start preschools in low-income communities.

#2. Michael Bloomberg ($767 million)
Former New York City mayor and possible 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Michael Bloomberg speaks at the Institute of Politics at Saint Anselm College in Manchester, New Hampshire, US, on January 29, 2019. Photograph: Brian Snyder/Reuters

Ex-mayor of New York City and 8th richest person in the United States and the 11th richest person in the world, Michael Bloomberg ranks second on the philanthropic list.

He is the founder, CEO, and owner of Bloomberg L.P., a privately held company headquartered in Midtown Manhattan, New York City.

#3. Pierre and Pam Omidyar ($392 million)
Pierre and Pam Omidyar. Photograph: Dario Cantatore/Getty Images

The founder of eBay, Pierre Omidyar, is an American billionaire entrepreneur.

The Omidyar couple of Pierre and Pam founded the Omidyar Network in 2004. The organisation invests in and helps scale innovative organisations to catalyse economic, social, and political change.

#4. Stephen Schwarzman ($390 million)
Stephen A Schwarzman, chairman and CEO of Blackstone, attends the World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, on January 22, 2019. Photograph: Arnd Wiegmann/Reuters

Chairman and CEO of the Blackstone Group, a global private equity firm, Stephen Schwarzman, donated $390 million for philanthropic causes in 2018 and is ranked 4th on the list.

#5. Steve and Connie Ballmer ($295 million)
Former Microsoft Chief Executive Steve Ballmer. Photograph: Jason Redmond/Reuters

Former Microsoft Chief Executive Officer Steve Ballmer and his wife Connie Balmer have regularly donated for philanthropic causes.

The couple donated 295 million dollars in the year 2018 and are currently ranked 5th on the list of the top 50 philanthropists.

Ballmer has also launched, a non-profit organisation whose goal is to allow people to understand US government revenue, spending and societal impact.

#6. Paul Allen ($261 million)
Paul Allen. Photograph: Anthony P Bolante/Reuters

Paul Allen, co-founder of tech behemoth Microsoft along with Bill Gates in 1975, is an American business magnate, investor, and philanthropist.

He gave away more than $2 billion to causes such as education, wildlife and environmental conservation, arts, healthcare, community services, and more.

#7. Mark Zuckerberg and Priscilla Chan ($214 million)
Mark Zuckerberg, wife Priscilla with their daughter Max. Photograph: Mark Zuckerberg handout/Reuters

Mark Zuckerberg, the co-founder of Facebook, the online social media and social networking giant, ranks as one of the wealthiest and most influential people in the world currently.

He and wife Priscilla Chan were ranked 2nd in the Philanthrophists 50 list of 2017, when they had donated $2 billion. Currently they are ranked at the 7th position.

The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative (CZI), an LLC, was established by the couple on December 1, 2015.

The aim of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative is to "advance human potential and promote equality in areas such as health, education, scientific research and energy."

#8. John and Laura Arnold ($204 million)
John D Arnold. Photograph: John D Arnold/Facebook

John Arnold is an American billionaire and former hedge fund manager.

In 2008, He along with his wife Laura, founded Laura and John Arnold Foundation, a private foundation.

#9. Jay Alix ($200 million)
Jay Alix. Photograph: kind courtesy

Jay Alix, is founder of AlixPartners, a consulting firm best known for its work in the turnaround space.

Jay Alix pledged $200 million to Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.

#10. Edward Bass ($160 million)
Edward Bass. Photograph: kind courtesy

Edward Bass is an American businessman and financier.

He is also the chairman of the board of directors of the Sid W Richardson Foundation, a philanthropic organisation.

List: Kind courtesy The Chronicle of Philanthropy
Information about the Philanthropists: Kind courtesy Wikipedia.
Production: Ashish Narsale/

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Aslam Hunani / in Mumbai

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