Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, is giving away half a billion dollars worth of Facebook shares to Silicon Valley Community Foundation. Zuckerberg signed The Giving Pledge two years ago; which is a public commitment to donate half of his wealth or more in his life or after his death. The Giving Pledge was started by Bill Gates and Warren Buffett, and is overseen by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. So far, 92 billionaires have pledged to give away 50 percent or more of their wealth.
The 28-year old Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) co-founder said in a Facebook post Tuesday that he, along with his wife, have decided to work closely with the Silicon Valley Community Foundation to help improve health and education. It is the single largest donation to education in the year 2012. Mark Zuckerberg’s stake in Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) is currently valued at $11 billion.
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Zuckerberg made his first donation in 2010, when he gifted $100 million to the beleaguered schools in Newark, New Jersey. On Tuesday, Zuckerberg said he gifted the Silicon Valley Community Foundation with 18 million Facebook shares to start new projects in healthcare and education. At Tuesday’s closing price of $27.71, the 18 million Facebook shares are valued at $498.8 million. According to an SEC filing, the shares have already been donated.
It is yet to be seen how the charitable foundation is going to use the funds. According to the website of Silicon Valley Community Foundation, it is likely to work on “the emerging challenges in our region.” By the end of 2011, the foundation had $2 billion in assets, and it has further received $470 million in contributions for 2012.
Zuckerberg started Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) in 2004 from his Harvard dorm room. Within just eight years, it has grown to become the world’s largest social networking site with over a billion users. With its IPO in May, Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ:FB) became the first company to debut at over $100 billion. However, the company’s stock prices have come under pressure due to questions regarding its long-term money making prospects.