Do you Know the net worth of Bill Gate? Have you ever guessed where he comes from and where he attended school? Do you know how Gate’s career began and how he made his wealth? This article answers all your questions about Bill Gate net worth.
Who is Bill Gate?
William Henry Gates III is an American business magnate, software developer, investor, author, and philanthropist. He is a co-founder of Microsoft, along with his late childhood friend Paul Allen. During his career at Microsoft, Gates held the positions of chairman, chief executive officer (CEO), president and chief software architect, while also being the largest individual shareholder until May 2014. He was a major entrepreneur of the microcomputer revolution of the 1970s and 1980s.
Where Bill Gate Originated
Bill Gates was born in Seattle, Washington on October 28, 1955. He is the son of William H. Gates Sr. (1925–2020) and Mary Maxwell Gates (1929–1994). His ancestry includes English, German, and Irish/Scots-Irish. His father was a prominent lawyer, and his mother served on the board of directors for First Interstate BancSystem and the United Way of America. Gates’s maternal grandfather was J. W. Maxwell, a national bank president. Gates has an older sister Kristi (Kristianne) and a younger sister Libby. He is the fourth of his name in his family but is known as William Gates III or “Trey” (i.e., three) because his father had the “II” suffix. The family lived in the Sand Point area of Seattle in a home that was damaged by a rare tornado when Gates was seven years old.
At 13, he enrolled in the private Lakeside prep school, where he wrote his first software program. When he was in the eighth grade, the Mothers’ Club at the school used proceeds from Lakeside School’s rummage sale to buy a Teletype Model 33 ASR terminal and a block of computer time on a General Electric (GE) computer for the students.
Gates took an interest in programming the GE system in BASIC, and he was excused from math classes to pursue his interest. He wrote his first computer program on this machine, an implementation of tic-tac-toe that allowed users to play games against the computer. Gates was fascinated by the machine and how it would always execute software code perfectly. After the Mothers Club donation was exhausted, Gates and other students sought time on systems including DEC PDP minicomputers. One of these systems was a PDP-10 belonging to Computer Center Corporation (CCC) which banned Gates, Paul Allen, Ric Weiland, and Gates’s best friend and first business partner Kent Evans, for the summer after it caught them exploiting bugs in the operating system to obtain free computer time.
At 17, Gates formed a venture with Allen called Traf-O-Data to make traffic counters based on the Intel 8008 processor. In 1972, he served as a congressional page in the House of Representatives. He was a National Merit Scholar when he graduated from Lakeside School in 1973. He scored 1590 out of 1600 on the Scholastic Aptitude Tests (SAT) and enrolled at Harvard College in the autumn of 1973. He chose a pre-law major but took mathematics and graduate level computer science courses. While at Harvard, he met fellow student Steve Ballmer. Gates left Harvard after two years while Ballmer stayed and graduated magna cum laude.
Bill Gates Businesses
Gates has a multi-billion dollar investment portfolio with stake in various sectors and has participated in several entrepreneurial ventures beyond Microsoft, including:
- AutoNation, automotive retailer that Gates has a 16% stake in trading on the NYSE.
- bgC3 LLC, a think-tank and research company founded by Gates.
- Canadian National Railway (CN), a Canadian Class I freight railway. As of 2019, Gates is the largest single shareholder of CN stock.
- Cascade Investment LLC, a private investment and holding company incorporated in the United States, founded and controlled by Gates and headquartered in Kirkland, Washington.
- Gates is the top private owner of farmland in the United States with landholdings owned via Cascade Investment totalling 242,000 acres across 19 states. He is the 49th largest private owner of land in the US.
- Carbon Engineering, a for-profit venture founded by David Keith, which Gates helped fund. It’s is also supported by Chevron Corporation and Occidental Petroleum.
- SCoPEx, Keith’s academic venture in “sun-dimming” geoengineering, which Gates provided most of the $12 million for.
- Corbis (originally named Interactive Home Systems and now known as Branded Entertainment Network), a digital image licensing and rights services company founded and chaired by Gates.
- EarthNow, Seattle-based startup company aiming to blanket the Earth with live satellite video coverage. Gates is a large financial backer.
- Eclipse Aviation, a defunct manufacturer of very light jets. Gates was a major stake-holder early on in the project.
- Impossible Foods, a company that develops plant-based substitutes for meat products. Some of the $396 million Patrick O. Brown collected for his business came from Gates around 2014 to 2017.
- Ecolab, global provider of water, hygiene and energy technologies and services to the food, energy, healthcare, industrial and hospitality markets. Combined with the shares owned by the Foundation, Gates owns 11.6% of the company. A shareholder agreement in 2012 allowed him to own up to 25% of the company, but this agreement was removed.
- ResearchGate, a social networking site for scientists. Gates participated in a $35 million round of financing along with other investors.
- TerraPower, a nuclear reactor design company co-founded and chaired by Gates, which is developing next generation traveling-wave reactor nuclear power plants in an effort to tackle climate change.
- Breakthrough Energy Ventures, a closed fund for wealthy individuals who seek ROI on a 20-year horizon (see next section), which “is funding green start-ups and a host of other low-carbon entrepreneurial projects, including everything from advanced nuclear technology to synthetic breast milk.” It was founded by Gates in 2015.
- Ginkgo Bioworks, a biotech startup that received $350 million in venture funding in 2019, in part from Gates’s investment firm Cascade Investment.
- Luminous Computing, a company that develops neuromorphic photonic integrated circuits for AI acceleration.
- Mologic, British diagnostic technology company that Gates purchased, along with the Soros Economic Development Fund, “which has developed 10-minute Covid lateral flow tests that it aims to make for as little as $1.”
Summary of Bill Gate Net Worth
- Bill Gates turned his fortune from software firm Microsoft into a diversified fortune; his focus has shifted to zero-carbon energy investing and philanthropy.
- On May 3, 2021, Bill and Melinda each announced on Twitter they were ending their marriage after 27 years. They will still co-chair the charitable Gates Foundation.
- Gates, who cofounded Microsoft with Paul Allen (d. 2018) in 1975, has transferred at least $5.7 billion worth of shares in public companies to Melinda.
- As of March 2020, when Gates stepped down from the Microsoft board, he owned about 1% of the software and computing company’s shares.
- He has invested in dozens of companies including Canadian National Railway and AutoNation, and is one of the largest owners of farmland in the U.S.
- To date, Gates has donated $35.8 billion worth of Microsoft stock to the Gates Foundation.