Looks like Bill Gates has been diversifying into the railroad industry for quite some time. With recent purchases, he has become the largest individual shareholder through Cascade, which he is the sole owner of. The charitable trust with his wife also owns a chunk of CN stock. Total is worth about 1.8 billion dollars. At least he's making money on it. He's been buying stock since at least 2000.According to an article: "Taking stock splits (but not dividends) into account, an investor holding 100 CN shares worth $2,700 (Canadian) back in 1995 would currently have 600 shares worth $31,752." From http://www.ble.org/pr/news/headline.asp?id=15879 CN has had a lot of problems recently with derailments and such, so I was kind of surprised to see it has performed so well, not just since 1995, but also in the more recent past.