Microsoft’s Paul Allen: His Net Worth and All the Businesses He Was Involved In Over the Years

Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen died from complications of non-Hodgkins lymphoma on October 15. He was 65 years old.

The technologist and philanthropist founded Microsoft in 1975, along with his childhood friend Bill Gates. Allen left the company in 1982 when he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Treatment for the disease was successful, and he went spent the following decades using his Microsoft wealth to invest in other companies and charitable endeavors. In 2009, he was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. In an October 1 tweet, he announced that the disease had returned.

Paul Allen’s net worth

Paul Allen

Paul Allen in 2014 | Mat Hayward/Getty Images for 1st Family Foundation

Allen was worth $20.3 billion at the time of his death, according to Forbes. He was the 44thrichest person in the world and the 21st-richest person in America.

Allen had his stake in Microsoft to thank for his billions. After leaving the company, he used his fortune to found Vulcan Inc., which “is the engine behind philanthropist and Microsoft cofounder Paul G. Allen’s network of organizations and initiatives.”

Allen’s many businesses

Allen has a stake in many businesses and other organizations. Through Vulcan, Allen owned two pro sports franchises: The Seattle Seahawks and the Portland Trail Blazers, and managed CenturyLink Field (home to the Seahawks) and the Moda Center (home to the Trail Blazers). He was also part owner of the Seattle Sounders soccer team.

Allen’s film production company, Vulcan Productions produced movies such as Far From Heaven, Girl Rising, This Emotional Life, and Unseen Enemy.

In 2011, Allen founded Stratolaunch, a company that aims to make it easier (and cheaper) for people to get into space. Allen was also part of the team that launched SpaceShipOne, the first privately-owned craft to enter sub-orbital space.

Some of his money went toward cutting-edge research. The Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence is a hub for AI research, the Allen Institute for Brain Science is dedicated to answering pressing questions in neuroscience, and the Allen Institute for Cell Science studies human cells.

Allen’s company also owns a multi-billion dollar real estate portfolio, primarily made up of properties in Seattle’s South Lake Union neighborhood. Vulcan’s investment arm, Vulcan Capital invested in companies such as Redfin, Flipkart, Spotify, Uber, TrueCar, and Waterpik.

Vulcan is also the force behind numerous cultural institutions in Seattle, from the Museum of Pop Culture (founded by Allen and previously known as the Experience Music Project) to the Seattle Art Fair to the city’s Cinerama movie theater.

Allen’s charitable giving

A girls suspected of being infected with the Ebola virus has her temperature checked

A nurse checks the temperature of a girl possibly infected with Ebola. | Carl de Souza/AFP/Getty Images

Allen gave away $2.6 billion of his fortune over his lifetime, according to Forbes. His charitable giving included $100 million he pledged to fight Ebola in Africa; supporting the Great Elephant Census, which gathered data about the current elephant population in Africa; and $30 million he gave to address Seattle’s homelessness crisis. He also donated $40 million to establish the Paul G. Allen School of Computer Science & Engineering at the University of Washington.

In a statement, Vulcan Inc. and the Paul G. Allen network indicated that they “will continue to work on furthering Paul’s mission and the projects he entrusted to us. There are no changes imminent for Vulcan, the teams, the research institutes or museums.”

“My brother was a remarkable individual on every level,” Jody Allen, Allen’s sister, said in a statement. “Paul’s family and friends were blessed to experience his wit, warmth, his generosity and deep concern. For all the demands on his schedule, there was always time for family and friends. At this time of loss and grief for us – and so many others – we are profoundly grateful for the care and concern he demonstrated every day.”

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