The pair announced they were separating as they “no longer believe we can grow together as a couple”. In a statement released tonight they said: “After a great deal of thought and a lot of work on our relationship, we have made the decision to end our marriage.”
The pair jointly run the foundation, which spends billions fighting infection diseases. The group also encourages vaccinations in children.
Bill and Melinda met when the latter joined her husband-to-be’s firm Microsoft.
How old are Bill and Melinda Gates?
Bill Gates was born on October 28, 1955, and is now 65 years old.
He was born in Seattle, Washington, in the USA.
Melinda Gates is 56 years old. She was born in Dallas, Texas, on August 15, 1964, as Melinda Ann French.
How did Bill Gates and Melinda Gates meet?
Bill met Melinda just after she joined Microsoft back in 1987.
Melinda had joined as a product manager at the firm Bill started in 1975 with friend Paul Allen, making computer software.
The pair dated for around a year when they decided to make the relationship serious.
They married on a golf course on the Hawaiian Island of Lanai on January 1, 1994.
They have three children and recently spoke about their conservative parenting style.
The Gates banned their children from having mobile phones until they were 14 and limit screen time to help with their sleep.
Bill said: “We’ve raised our kids in a religious way. They’ve gone to the Catholic church that Melinda goes to and I participate in.”
He said their parenting model follows one developed in the 1970s, called ‘Love and Logic’.
It uses a system to minimise emotional reactions such as telling off the children. It aims to encourage children to solve problems on their own.