Patagonia Founder ‘Gives Away’ Company in the Name of

Almost half a century since American rock climber-turned-businessman Yvon Chouinard founded Patagonia, he’s announced an unconventional sort of exit plan. In the company’s own words, it’s “going purpose” instead of “going public.”

In lieu of selling the company or going public, the reluctant billionaire is transferring all ownership to two new entities: a trust and a nonprofit organization.

“If we have any hope of a thriving planet 50 years from now, it demands all of us doing all we can with the resources we have,” Chouinard says in reference to the shift in ownership. “Instead of extracting value from nature and transforming it into wealth, we are using the wealth Patagonia creates to protect the source. We’re making Earth our only shareholder. I am dead serious about saving this planet.”