Letter: Bill Gates is not the mystery pounds 8m housebuyer

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The Independent Online
Your article "Buy a house in London ..." (30 November) speculates that the "mystery purchaser" of a house in Holland Park, London is Bill Gates, founder and CEO of Microsoft Corporation, and that he had threatened to move Microsoft's headquarters to Britain as well. It also states that the house is registered in the name of a Seattle-based corporation, implying that this is a company associated with Bill Gates and/or Microsoft.

I can categorically confirm that neither Mr Gates nor Microsoft has purchased any property in Holland Park. Neither has the property been purchased for Mr Gates' use by anyone on his behalf. I can also confirm that Mr Gates did not threaten "Washington sources" in 1994 or at any other time that he was going to move Microsoft's headquarters to Britain. A company whose success is based around its thousands of talented software engineers and the creation of intellectual property could not possibly consider moving its headquarters to another country without seriously threatening its business.

David Svendsen

Microsoft, Reading