- Bill Gates is a billionaire investor and philanthropist. He owns a significant stake in many companies through The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and personal investment firm Cascade Investment.
- Bill Gates is most commonly associated with Microsoft, but the founder sold most of his Microsoft shares after stepping down as CEO in 2000. He instead favors investment in evergreen industries such as waste management, heavy machinery, and transportation.
- Berkshire Hathaway represents the largest holding of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Gates and founder Warren Buffett have been friends for decades and share similar philanthropic values.
|Company / Organization||Business Category||Key Differentiator||Integration Strategy|
|Microsoft||Technology and Software||Leading technology company.||Co-founded and led Microsoft, focusing on software development, operating systems, and computing technology.|
|Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation||Philanthropy||Charitable foundation addressing global challenges.||Established to address global issues, such as health, poverty, and education, through philanthropic efforts.|
|Breakthrough Energy||Clean Energy and Innovation||Investing in clean energy solutions.||Invests in clean energy technologies to combat climate change and promote sustainable energy sources.|
|TerraPower||Nuclear Energy and Innovation||Advanced nuclear energy technology.||Develops advanced nuclear energy solutions for a more sustainable and secure energy future.|
|Gates Ventures||Investment and Innovation||Investment and innovation firm.||Invests in various technology, healthcare, and innovation-related ventures to drive progress and change.|
|Cambia Health Solutions||Healthcare Technology||Healthcare transformation and technology.||Focuses on healthcare technology and solutions to improve the healthcare experience for individuals.|
|Kirkland & Ellis||Law Firm||International law firm.||Engages in legal services and provides legal counsel for various initiatives and investments.|
|Cascade Investment||Investment Holding Company||Investment and asset management.||Manages Bill Gates’ diversified investment portfolio, which includes equity stakes in multiple companies.|
Bill Gates is an American business tycoon, software developer, investor, and more recently, philanthropist. After dropping out of Harvard University and founding Microsoft in 1975, Gates has at times been the richest man in the world with an estimated net worth of $129 billion. He founded Cascade Investment in 1995 to manage his investments outside of Microsoft. The firm employs over 100 people and has significant stakes in hotel, rail transport, beverage, and waste management companies. To further his philanthropic causes, he founded the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in 2000. The foundation holds almost $47 billion in assets and tackles entrenched global issues around poverty, healthcare, and climate change. The foundation also has several trust investments in companies such as Berkshire Hathaway, Caterpillar, FedEx, Walmart, and UPS.
In popular culture, Microsoft is the company most commonly associated with Bill Gates.
But in truth, Gates sold most of his shares in the company in 2000 – the same year he stepped down as CEO. He now serves as a technical advisor and has relatively little to do with day-to-day operations.
Having said that, he maintains a 3.6% stake in the company through Cascade Investment. The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation also has a small stake.
Berkshire Hathaway represents the largest holding of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, owning approximately 7 million shares with a market value of $7 billion.
Gates and Berkshire Hathaway founder Warren Buffett have been close friends for several decades. Both have also attracted significant praise for donating a large proportion of their wealth to philanthropic causes.
Four Seasons Hotel and Resorts
Four Seasons Hotel and Resorts is an international luxury hotel and resort company.
Founded in 1961, the company operates more than 100 hotels and resorts around the world. Gates together with Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal of Saudi Arabia own 95% of the company in shares after a $3.8 billion investment in 2007.
Canadian National Railway
Canadian National Railway is the third-largest holding of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Through the foundation and his personal investment company, Gates is the largest single shareholder at approximately 10.04%.
In addition to rail, the company provides integrated transportation services in trucking, warehousing, and freight forwarding.
Caterpillar is a manufacturer and designer of heavy vehicles used in the energy, mining, and agriculture industries. It also sells financial products such as insurance to customers through a global dealer network.
The company is the fourth-largest holding of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
UPS and FedEx
Curiously, Gates has significant stakes in UPS and FedEx. Both are American courier companies that are also direct competitors.
His investment in these companies is generally viewed as a way to profit from the growing eCommerce trend.
Waste Management, Inc.
Waste Management, Inc., is the second-largest Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation holding. The foundation has almost 19 million shares with a market value of $1.97 billion.
The company is a provider of waste management services in the United States with over 21 million residential, commercial, and industrial customers. It is also involved in several green initiatives including the conversion of landfill gas into electricity.
- Bill Gates: An American business tycoon, software developer, investor, and philanthropist, known for co-founding Microsoft.
- Microsoft: Gates co-founded Microsoft in 1975. He sold most of his Microsoft shares in 2000, stepping down as CEO. He maintains a 3.6% stake in the company through Cascade Investment and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
- Cascade Investment: Gates founded Cascade Investment in 1995 to manage his investments outside of Microsoft. The firm holds stakes in various industries, including hotels, rail transport, beverage, and waste management companies.
- Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation: Founded in 2000, the foundation focuses on global issues like poverty, healthcare, and climate change. It holds significant assets and investments in companies like Berkshire Hathaway, Caterpillar, FedEx, Walmart, and UPS.
- Four Seasons Hotel and Resorts: Gates, along with Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal, owns 95% of the luxury hotel and resort company after a $3.8 billion investment in 2007.
- Canadian National Railway: Gates is the largest single shareholder with about 10.04% ownership in this transportation company, which provides integrated services in trucking, warehousing, and freight forwarding.
- Caterpillar Inc.: Gates holds a significant stake in Caterpillar, a manufacturer of heavy vehicles used in energy, mining, and agriculture. The company also offers financial products and services.
- UPS and FedEx: Gates has stakes in both UPS and FedEx, American courier companies, likely as a way to capitalize on the growing eCommerce trend.
- Waste Management, Inc.: The second-largest holding of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the company provides waste management services in the United States and is involved in green initiatives.
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