The pair announced their decision to divorce in May 2021 after nearly 30 years of marriage. It was finalised in August 2021, but they continue to run their foundation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, together.
Following the divorce announcement, Gates reportedly admitted to having an affair with a female Microsoft employee in 2000. A spokesperson for the billionaire acknowledged that the affair took place and it had “ended amicably”.
The Microsoft co-founder, who is worth US$132.3 billion (£105.2 billion), previously said that 2021 had been a year of “great personal sadness” for him in a blog post published to his GatesNotes blog in December.
In a new interview with The Sunday Times, Gates opened up about his current working relationship with Melinda and how he feels about the end of their marriage.
The business magnate said that every marriage “goes through a transition” after children have grown up and left the family home.
“Mine sadly went through this transition called divorce. But from my point of view it was a great marriage. I wouldn’t have changed it. You know, I wouldn’t choose to marry someone else.”
Asked if he would marry again, Gates answered: “Yes. I’m talking about would I marry Melinda all over again. In terms of my future, I don’t have any plans, but I highly recommend marriage.”
In March, Melinda told CBS News that she was looking forward to falling in love again.
“I’m dipping my toe in that water a little bit,” she said. “I feel like I’m in a really good place.”
Melinda also revealed that there were “many things” that contributed to the decision to separate from Gates, including his relationship with convicted paedophile Jeffrey Epstein.
In a bid to raise money for his foundation, Gates had dinners with Epstein after his child sex conviction. The billionaire later said the meetings “were a mistake” and he “regretted” them.
Melinda spoke of the only time she met Epstein and said she “regretted it from the second I stepped in the door”.
“He was abhorrent. He was evil personified. I had nightmares about it afterwards. So, you know, my heart breaks for these young women, because that’s how I felt, and here I’m an older woman.”
Asked about Epstein, Gates told The Sunday Times: “At the time, I didn’t realise that by having those meetings it would be seen as giving him credibility.
“You’re almost saying, ‘I forgive that type of behaviour’, or something. So clearly the way it’s seen, I made a huge mistake not understanding that.”