Cascade Investment

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Cascade Investment, L.L.C.
Founded1995; 28 years ago (1995)
FounderBill Gates
United States
Key people
Bill Gates (Chairman)
Michael Larson (CIO)
Total assetsUS$70 billion (2021)
OwnerBill Gates
Number of employees
  • Front Range Investment Holdings LLC
  • Cottonwood Management LLC
  • Lakeland Sands Florida, LLC

Cascade Investment, L.L.C. is an American holding company and private investment firm headquartered in Kirkland, Washington, United States. [2] It is controlled by Bill Gates, and managed by Michael Larson.[3] More than half of Gates's fortune is held in assets outside his holding of Microsoft shares.[4] Cascade is the successor company to Dominion Income Management, the former investment vehicle for Gates's holdings, which was managed by convicted felon Andrew Evans.[5]

Larson reportedly directs Cascade's investments through Bill and Melinda Gates Investments, a firm that also manages the portfolios of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and other connected entities.[6] Larson accrued over the twenty years from 1995 an 11% compound annual return,[6] and as of 2014 had 100 employees working under his direction.[1] In 2021, Cascade drew attention due to allegations of toxic work environment caused by Larson.[7]

With 269,000 acres of farmland (which has been historically countercyclical to the stock market) being held through a wide network of shell companies, Cascade Investment is the largest farmland owner in the United States.[8]

Cascade has managed Gates' stake in Canadian National Railway since 2013.[9] This constituted one of the investment firm's largest holdings.[10] In 2022, the company sold $940 million worth of stocks, whittling Gates' stake down to 1.4 percent.[9]

Notable investments

CompanyTickerSectorOwnership %
Four Seasons Hotels and ResortsPrivateHospitality71.25%[6][11]
Canadian National RailwayRail transport14.2%[13]
FEMSABeverage and Retail[6]
Berkshire HathawayConglomerate4%[6]
Strategic Hotels & ResortsPrivateHospitality9.8%[6][14]
Republic ServicesNYSERSGWaste management34.1%[15]
Deere & CompanyNYSEDEAgricultural, construction, forestry, outdoor power and turf maintenance equipment. OEM diesel and natural gas engine manufacturer.10.06%[16]
BunzlLSEBNZLDistribution and Outsourcing6%[6]
AutoNationNYSEANCar dealership14%[3][18][19]
MicrosoftNasdaqMSFTSoftware and Hardware conglomerate3.6%[3]
Beyond MeatNasdaqBYNDFood[3][20]
Ritz-Carlton in San FranciscoPrivateHospitality[1]
TerraPowerPrivateNuclear power[3]
TransformcoPrivateRetail and real estateDebt interest[21]
VroomNasdaqVRMCar dealership[22]
Signature AviationPrivateAviation Services[24]


  1. ^ a b c Bort, Julie (September 20, 2014). "Meet Bill Gates' Investment Manager". Slate. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  2. ^ "Cascade Investment (Bill and Melinda Gates Investments (BMGI)) - Family Office, United States - SWFI".
  3. ^ a b c d e Das, Anupreeta; Karmin, Craig (September 19, 2014). "This Man's Job: Make Bill Gates Richer". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  4. ^ Miller, Matthew (March 5, 2008). "Gates No Longer World's Richest Man". Forbes. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  5. ^ Torres, Craig (March 7, 1993). "Convicted Felons Handle Gates Fortune". The Seattle Times. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h Warwick-Ching, Lucy (October 21, 2015). "Cascade Investment, Bill Gates' wealth manager". Financial Times. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  7. ^ Das, Anupreeta; Flitter, Emily; Kulish, Nicholas (2021-05-26). "A Culture of Fear at the Firm That Manages Bill Gates's Fortune". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved 2022-12-28.
  8. ^ "Bill Gates uses farmland as an investment outlet buying up potato, carrot and onion farms". NBC News.
  9. ^ a b Dolan, Kerry A. "Bill Gates Transferred Billions Of Dollars' Worth Of These Two Stocks To The Gates Foundation". Forbes. Retrieved 2022-12-28.
  10. ^ "Bill Gates Sells $940 Million of CN Rail Stock, Trimming Stake to 9%". 2022-05-13. Retrieved 2022-12-28.
  11. ^ "Four Seasons Hotels agrees to bid from Gates and Alwaleed". The New York Times. February 12, 2007. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  12. ^ Stych, Ed (May 7, 2012). "Bill Gates' stake in Ecolab could get bigger". American City Business Journals. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  13. ^ "Canadian National Railway Company | SC 13G". U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. December 31, 2019. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  14. ^ Gallun, Alby (August 10, 2015). "Could Bill Gates be the next owner of Strategic Hotels?". Crain's Chicago Business. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  15. ^ "Republic Services, Inc. | DEF 14A". U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. March 24, 2020. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  16. ^ "Deere & Company | DEF 14A". U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. January 8, 2021. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  17. ^ "See how @DiageoGB scores on #water stewardship in face of #climatechange in new @Ceresnews analysis". Feeding Ourselves Thirsty. Retrieved 2021-04-13.
  18. ^ Bort, Julie (Mar 20, 2019). "Bill Gates is $9.5 billion richer than he was a year ago, worth over $100 billion, but not just from Microsoft". Business Insider. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  19. ^ "Cascade Investment – Portfolio Holdings". Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  20. ^ Gunther, Marc (October 3, 2013). "The Bill Gates-backed company that's reinventing meat". Fortune. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  21. ^ Zumbach, Lauren (June 4, 2018). "Sears gets more time to repay lenders, including funds tied to CEO Edward Lampert and Bill Gates". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  22. ^ "Vroom, Inc. | S-1". U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. May 18, 2020. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  23. ^ Herald, C. R. E. (October 14, 2020). "Bill Gates' Cascade Investment, GIC buy stakes in StorageMart". CRE Herald. Retrieved April 3, 2021.
  24. ^ Calatayud, Adria. "GIP teams up with Blackstone and Cascade to buy Signature Aviation". Retrieved 2022-04-19.

External links