Bill Gates Owns Far More Than The Most U.S Farmland, Here Are His ‘Secret’ Holdings
Bill Gates, the billionaire founder and former CEO of Microsoft, is known for his vast wealth, extreme philanthropy and, in recent years, he’s become known for owning the most U.S. farmland.
What Happened: Conspiracy theorists claimed that Gates’ interest in U.S. agriculture (AG) is far greater than it really is, saying he owns some 80% of all U.S. AG.
The billionaire recently ousted the claim in an “Ask Me Anything” (AMA) session on Reddit, saying he owns less than 1/4000 (or 0.025%) of all available farm territory in the States.
Read also: Which Billionaire Owns The Most Land In The U.S.? Hint, It’s Not Bill Gates
While that is a ton of land to own, Gates owns a lot more than that.
Before we get into the billionaire’s “secret” holdings, new companies focusing on the retail investor have innovated ways for them to gain exposure to the property market, too. Here’s how to invest as little as $100 (or more, depending on your appetite) in a property to earn passive income and build long-term wealth.
Gates owns a $40 billion investment firm, called Cascade Investment LLC — and it holds a swath of assets.
Founded in 1995, Cascade is a holding company managed by Michael Larson. The firm’s assets include more than half of Gates’ fortunes, outside of his shares in Microsoft and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Trust Endowment.
It holds Four Seasons Hotel and Resorts, in fact, 71.3% of it.
Cascade first invested in the luxury hotel chain in 1997 when the company was public. It shared 47.5% ownership with Kingdom Holding after it was taken private ten years later. In 2021, Cascade bought half of the Kingdom’s stake for roughly $2.21 billion, giving Gates a controlling 71.3% stake in the $10 billion company.
The investment firm also owns over 21% of Minnesota-based hygiene and food safety-tech company, Ecolab Inc.
Cascade, through the Bill and Melinda Gates foundation owns 8.11% of Canadian National Railway, an international transportation company.
It owns 10% of agricultural and heavy equipment machinery manufacturer, John Deere (Deere & Co).
It also owns roughly 5% of new and pre-owned vehicle retailer AutoNation.
That’s not all.
Gates has a massive real-estate portfolio, including a $130 million home in Medina, Washington purchased in 1988 for $2 million. The billionaire owns a 314-acre private island in Belize, and a $43 million beachfront mansion in San Diego.
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