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Last Updated: Friday, 2 March 2007, 15:59 GMT
Buffett's $48bn donation deadline
Warren Buffett
Warren Buffett is widely known as the 'sage of Omaha'
Warren Buffett has outlined a timetable by which he wants most of his $48.4bn (25bn) fortune donated to charity.

The world's second-richest man revealed last year that five charitable foundations would gain from his shares in holding company Berkshire Hathaway.

Mr Buffett told Berkshire shareholders on Thursday he wanted proceeds from his stock given to charities "within 10 years after my estate is closed".

The tycoon plans to donate about $37bn to Bill Gates' charitable foundation.

Mr Buffett, known as the "sage of Omaha" for his relentless success in investments, said he anticipated his estate should be settled within three years of his death.

"I've set this schedule because I want the money to be spent relatively promptly by people I know to be capable, vigorous and motivated," the 76-year-old said.

"Today, there are terrific people in charge at the five foundations. So at my death, why should they not move with dispatch to judiciously spend the money that remains?"

Gates gift

Mr Buffett has said he intends to give away 12,050,000 class B shares of Berkshire Hathaway stock to the foundations.

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, set up by Microsoft co-founder and world's richest man Bill Gates, is earmarked to receive 10 million class B shares.

The Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, named in honour of his wife, will receive 1 million class B shares, while three foundations run by his children will each receive 350,000 of the shares.

Berkshire Hathaway class B shares were worth $3,554 each on the day Mr Buffett outlined his plans.

The boss of Berkshire Hathaway said the timeline drawn-up for the distribution of his wealth was based on his anticipated remaining lifespan of about 12 years.

"Naturally, I'm aiming for more," he added.

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