Michael Bloomberg is not taking the Rupert Murdoch path and leaving control of his media empire to one of his children. Instead, the 81 year-old magnate plans to bequeath the company to his foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies, which will then sell it.
Speaking at the New York Times Climate Summit on Thursday, Bloomberg said “common sense says I should have succession plans.”
He added, “I give virtually all of the company’s profits to the foundation, and the foundation gave away last year $1.7 billion. This year it will be a little bit more than that.”
Bloomberg continued that, “when I die, the foundation inherits the company. They, because of the tax laws, will have to get rid of it, sell it someplace or other over the first five years.”
Reports last year stated that Bloomberg wanted to acquire Dow Jones, but that did not occur.
Bloomberg is funding a campaign to block the construction of petro-chemical plans, to the tune of a reported $500 million.
He hopes to continue working at his firm for three to five more years, the Times reports.
It is not clear who will inherit his personal fortune, reckoned as one of the largest in the U.S. He has two daughters.
It may be premature to sum up Bloomberg’s career. But he started on his entrepreneurial path when he was fired by Salomon Brothers. He later wrote that the firing was the best thing that ever happened to him — he started his financial desk terminal business, and created a large journalistic operation.
In 2001, shortly after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, he was elected mayor of New York City as a Republican, replacing Rudolph Guiliani. Finding a controversial way around the term limit laws, he secured a third term as NYC mayor. He is now a Democrat, and made a brief run for the Democratic nomination for the Presidency.