As tourism faces the worst crisis in its history, Bill Gates has decided to invest. In fact, the tycoon and founder of Microsoft you have just expanded the limits of your financial empire with Four Seasons: with an investment of 2,200 million dollars, Cascade Investment (the company that manages its assets) has taken over half the shareholding of the company owned by the Saudi prince Alwaleed bin Talal, thus increasing its stake (it already had part of the chain’s shares) from 47.5% to 71 ,5%. A) Yes, Bill Gates is now, among other things, the main shareholder of one of the luxury hotel chains most famous in the world.
With this decidedly unexpected acquisition it gives a strong signal of hope to the sector and (also) that is why the news immediately went around the world, but in reality the Four Seasons deal is just the latest in a long series of nine-figure purchases that the Microsoft founder has made in recent times.
In particular, in addition to the strictly financial sector, it continues to be very active in philanthropy with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation: the foundation that he continues to run with his ex-wife, created to contribute to useful projects for the common good and thus solve the great problems of humanity, from poverty to the climate crisis.
One billion dollars for clean energy
Among the latest big news from the Foundation, for example, is the launch of Breakthrough Energy Ventures: a green fund in which they have invested, among others, Jeff Bezos y Richard Brandson.
Bill Gates recently disbursed (other) $ 1 billion, after a first tranche in 2015 that shot up the value of the shares of the entire sector. They will be used to continue investigating in alternative energies to fossil fuels, thus contributing to the goal set by the Paris Agreement to make the world carbon neutral by 2050. A goal for which – as Bill Gates himself wrote in his latest book – innovations are needed that make the sustainable technologies are more profitable than traditional ones.
301 million dollars in the pharmaceutical sector
The purchase of (other) 2 million shares of Schrodinger, a company that develops software for chemistry and has a portfolio of drug discovery programs, caused quite a stir. An investment of 301 million dollars that will serve, among other things, to fight the pandemic, since Schrodinger (who collaborates with AstraZeneca) is also investigating in drugs against the coronavirus, which coincided, however, with the near abandonment of the Microsoft founder of the great ones of the web. As his stake in Schrodinger increased, Bill Gates halved its commitment to Apple, Amazon and Alphabet (owned by Google) and sold all of its shares in Uber and Alibaba.
$ 78.5 million for telecommunications
The $ 78.5 million that Bill Gates invested in the future a few months ago in Kymeta, a Washington-based satellite technology company (after participating in the first round of fundraising with $ 60 million): will help develop a flat panel antenna It can be used in moving vehicles, such as ambulances, providing Internet connection and telecommunications services.
All this in addition to the participations in companies as varied as Canadian National Railway, Caterpillar, Wallmart, UPS y FedEx. Also, over the years Bill Gates has spent 700 million to buy 242,000 acres of land and become in America’s first landowner (His nicknames include “Farm Bill”). He also has a hand in Italy: he has invested in Tarua, a sewage suction pump to be shipped to developing countries, designed by Vincenzo Di Leo, of Idee e Prodotti in Cavenago Brianza.
* This article was originally published at GQ Italia
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