One big issue in most divorces is figuring out who gets the house.
When two of the world's richest people divorce, there are enough houses to go around. Then it's time to decide who gets to own how much of AutoNation, the largest dealership group in the U.S.
For Bill and Melinda Gates, who last week said their 27-year marriage was ending, even that task didn't take long. About $307 million worth of AutoNation shares were transferred to Melinda the same day the billionaire philanthropists announced their split, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. All told, Bill transferred $2.4 billion worth of shares from his Cascade Investment holding company to his soon-to-be ex-wife, The Wall Street Journal reported.
Melinda's 2.9 million shares give her a 3.7 percent stake in AutoNation.
Bill, through Cascade Investment, still owns about 15.5 million shares of AutoNation, representing a 19 percent stake.
AutoNation, which has roughly tripled in value over the past year, is currently the top-performing stock in his Cascade portfolio, according to Investors.com. Bill became AutoNation's largest shareholder in 2016, and his chief investment officer, Michael Larson, sat on the company's board from 2010 through 2018.
The stock transfers made to Melinda last week also included 4.9 percent of Coca-Cola's Mexico bottling unit, 1.9 percent of Canadian National Railway Co. and 6.7 percent of broadcaster Grupo Televisa.