Sunday, August 1, 2021

Microsoft Co-Founder Paul Allen Dies at 65 | News & Opinion

Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen has died at age 65 from non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

Allen passed away Monday afternoon, according to his company, Vulcan. The news comes just weeks after Allen revealed that his non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma had returned after successful treatment in 2009.

In a statement, Allen’s sister, Jody Allen said: “My brother was a remarkable individual on every level. While most knew Paul Allen as a technologist and philanthropist, for us he was a much loved brother and uncle, and an exceptional friend.”

Allen is best known for co-founding Microsoft with Bill Gates in 1975 after they both decided to drop out of Harvard. He himself suggested the name for the company, which would go on to become one the world’s biggest tech giants.

Paul Allen

“I met Paul when I was in 7th grade, and it changed my life,” Gates wrote in a post remembering Allen, who he called one of his oldest friends.

“Paul foresaw that computers would change the world,” Gates said. “Even in high school, before any of us knew what a personal computer was, he was predicting that computer chips would get super-powerful and would eventually give rise to a whole new industry. That insight of his was the cornerstone of everything we did together. In fact, Microsoft would never have happened without Paul.”

In a statement, Microsoft’s CEO Satya Nadella added that Allen “created magical products, experiences, and institutions, and in doing so, he changed the world.”

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Allen resigned from Microsoft back in 1983 after he was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s disease. By then, he was also growing tired of Gates, who he accused in his of memoir of trying to dilute his stake in Microsoft. Nevertheless, Allen’s shares in the company would make him one of the world’s richest men; his estimated worth was at $20 billion. According to Vulcan, which manages his assets, Allen spent $2 billion of his personal fortunate on philanthropy.

“Millions of people were touched by his generosity, his persistence in pursuit of a better world, and his drive to accomplish as much as he could with the time and resources at his disposal,” Vulcan said in a statement.

The CEOs of Apple, Google and Amazon also offered their condolences:

Outside of his involvement in Microsoft, Allen is also known as the owner of the Seattle Seahawks and the Portland Trail Blazers. Vulcan said there are no imminent changes for the company. “We will continue to work on furthering Paul’s mission and the projects he entrusted to us,” it added.

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Editor’s note: This story has been updated with a statement from Bill Gates.


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