Bill and Melinda Gates Announce Divorce After 27-Year Marriage
'We no longer believe we can grow together as a couple in this next phase of our lives'
Bill and Melinda Gates have released a statement to announce they will divorce after 27 years of marriage.
The billionaire philanthropists published a press release on Monday evening to confirm the parting.
“After a great deal of thought and a lot of work on our relationship, we have made the decision to end our marriage,” the statement reads.
“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.”
The pair says they will continue working at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation together despite the split.
"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 this next phase of our lives," the statement posted to the Microsoft co-founder's Twitter account adds.
"We ask for space and privacy for our family as we begin to navigate this new life."
Last year, Bill Gates, formerly the world’s richest person, said he was stepping down from Microsoft’s board to focus on philanthropy.
Gates was Microsoft’s CEO until 2000 and since then has gradually scaled back his involvement in the company he started with Paul Allen in 1975.
He transitioned out of a day-to-day role in Microsoft in 2008 and served as chairman of the board until 2014.
The Seattle-based Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is the most influential private foundation in the world.
The organization has an endowment worth nearly $50 billion.
It has focused on global health and development and U.S. education issues since incorporating in 2000.
While both are global figures, Melinda Gates has increasingly built her profile as a champion of women and girls.
The former tech business executive launched her private Pivotal Ventures investment and incubation company in 2015 and recently partnered with Scott for a newly announced equity challenge.