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Bill and Melinda Gates close up

Bill Gates & Melinda Announce Divorce After 27 Years

By Rebecca Cukier

Bill Gates and wife Melinda today announced that they are to divorce after 27 years of marriage. The Microsoft founder, now the fourth richest man in the world with his $130 billion net worth, made the announcement via his company's social media, with a Twitter post breaking the news. Bill and Melinda were married on a golf course in Hawaii back in 1994 and share three children Jennifer, Rory, and Phoebe. Both managed to trend on Twitter after the news, seen below, broke.

Divorcing After 27 Years

Bill Gates holds his book

The tweet came with 65-year-old Bill writing: "Over the last 27 years, we have raised three incredible children and built a foundation that works all over the world to enable all people to lead healthy, productive lives."

Dad of three Gates added: "We continue to share a belief in that mission and will continue our work together at the foundation, but we no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in the next phase of our lives." See the tweet below.

Asking For 'Space And Privacy'

Bill & Melinda Gates indoor hug

Bill concluded: "We ask for space and privacy for our family as we begin to navigate this new life." The divorcing couple resides in Washington and overlooking the state's lake, in a sprawling earth-sheltered property. Their headlines over the past two decades have largely revolved around the 2000-founded Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, a philanthropy one.

Bill and Melinda met in New York when Bill was 31, the year he made his first billion dollars. By 39, he was the youngest billionaire in the world, worth $9.3 billion.

She Describes Their First Meet

Melinda, who was working at Microsoft as a project manager when she met Bill, met him at a company dinner and later described their first encounter. In her 2019 biography "The Moment of Lift," she wrote:

"I showed up late, and all the tables were filled except one, which still had two empty chairs side by side. I sat in one of them. A few minutes later, Bill arrived and sat in the other." Bill made a pros and cons of marriage after the couple had dated for a year. More details below.

He Hints At Divorce

Speaking on a Netflix documentary, Bill had hinted at the marriage collapsing, stating: "We cared a lot for each other and there were only two possibilities: either, we were going to break up or we were going to get married."

It is unclear whether or not the two signed a pre-nup. Bill, who founded Microsoft in 1975, served as a board member until last year, when he stepped down to focus entirely on his philanthropic activities. He is followed by 6.5 million on Instagram.

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