Gates Foundation Pares Back Grants for 2009, Still Plans 10 Percent Spending Boost

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation is planning to dole out less grant money in 2009 than anticipated, in response to the global financial crisis. The Seattle-based foundation, the world’s largest philanthropy devoted to global health, is still planning to spend 10 percent more on grants next year than in 2008, although that’s less than what it had previously budgeted, said CEO Jeff Raikes, in a letter on the foundation’s web site dated Nov. 21. The foundation’s grantmaking has been growing rapidly since 2006, when it received the first annual installment of stock donations from investor Warren Buffett. The donations were worth $1.6 billion in 2006, $1.76 billion the following year, and $1.8 billion this past July, according to the foundation’s web site.

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