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Amazon’s Jeff Bezos reveals philanthropic plans for his multi-billion dollar fortune

Yahoo Finance Live anchors break down Jeff Bezos' latest interview in which he states intention to give a majority of his fortune away to charity over his lifetime.

Video Transcript

RACHELLE AKUFFO: Well, one of the richest people in the world has a big announcement about his money. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is worth around $124 billion. Now Bezos and his longtime partner, Lauren Sanchez, have revealed in an interview with CNN what they plan to do with that fortune. Let's listen.

- And when you go and you look at your net worth, it's too much money to even spend in a lifetime. Do you plan to give away the majority of your wealth in your lifetime?

JEFF BEZOS: Yeah, I do. And the hard part is figuring out how to do it in a levered way. It's not easy. Building Amazon was not easy. It took a lot of hard work, a bunch of very smart teammates, and I'm finding-- and I think Lauren's finding the same thing-- that philanthropy is very similar. It's not easy. It's really hard. And there are a bunch of ways that you-- I think that you could do ineffective things, too. So we're building the capacity to be able to give away this money.

RACHELLE AKUFFO: And it's interesting because, I mean, Dave, Seana, we know that Bezos was actually under a lot of pressure to join that Giving Pledge that we'd seen other billionaires join as well. But here he is and side by side for the first time, I think-- this is the first official interview, I think, since getting together. I think it's since 2019, they have not done a major interview together. So what do you think of this dynamic and, also, what Bezos is doing by deciding to give away his wealth, Dave?

DAVE BRIGGS: I never thought he'd give in to that Giving Pledge because no one's going to tell Jeff Bezos what to do. And that factors into the one question I, obviously, wanted to hear the most, which is, would he buy the NFL's Washington Commanders? And he simply punted at that. But if you read the body language, the answer was clearly, yes, I'm going to do all that I can to buy that team, though, he said my favorite sport is football. I played growing up, but we'll just have to wait and see.

But from what I understand, he is making a full-fledged effort to buy that team in its entirety. But he doesn't want to be a minority owner, is what I've heard. He does not want to be below Dan Snyder in any way, shape, or form. So it's all or nothing. That entails Jay-Z in part. They apparently had dinner last week in LA. But it's interesting to hear these two people talk. Fascinating.

SEANA SMITH: Yeah, it's very interesting to hear them talk. I mean, even if he does go through and, in fact, does buy the Commanders, he's certainly going to have a lot of money left over. He has billions and billions of dollars. I think a lot of people were out there waiting to hear what Jeff Bezos was planning to do with all of his wealth.

Now we still don't have much information, very few specifics, and when it comes to timing of when he plans to give away his wealth and exactly what it will be on. I know, Rachelle, you mentioned some of the things that he will focus on, like climate change. He's already pledged $10 billion to the Bezos Earth Fund just a couple of years ago back in 2020. So no surprise. I wasn't surprised that he didn't join in on the pledge, the Giving Pledge, that so many of his billionaire friends and his ex-wife, Mackenzie Scott.

DAVE BRIGGS: Sam Bankman-Fried, SBF, was in on that, remember?

SEANA SMITH: Yeah, exactly.

DAVE BRIGGS: No joke. He was.

SEANA SMITH: He was, and now he has very, very--


SEANA SMITH: --little, nothing--

DAVE BRIGGS: Gave it away.

SEANA SMITH: --to give away.