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Sunday, 1. May 2011 - 14:29 Uhr
Warren Buffett - Considered to be one of the most successful stock market investors of all time, and one of the richest men in the world.
Warren Buffett’s determination and creativity has made him the success story he is today. He is chairman of an investment company which has more than $2 billion in holdings and is also the 2nd richest man in the world.
Warren Edward Buffett was born in 1930 in Omaha, Nebraska. At an early age warren displayed an aptitude for money and business along with an amazing ability to calculate numbers off the top of his head. He was an enthusiastic paper boy for the Washington Post, often covering more than one paper route at the same time. Warren’s interest in money and finance started showing early, and by the age of 11 he was playing the stock market.
Warren purchased three shares of Cities Service at $38 a share for himself and his older sister. Although the stock fell to just over $27 he held his shares until they rebounded to $40, unfortunately selling them before they climbed to $200. The experience taught him one of the basic lessons of investing: patience is a virtue.
In 1947 at the age of 17 he graduated from High School and while he never intended to go to college his father urged him to attend the Wharton Business School. Buffett lasted two years, claiming he knew more than his professors. Warren moved back home and transferred to the University of Nebraska. Even while working full-time, he graduated in only three years with a Bachelor of Science degree, and went on to be rejected by Harvard Business School because he was to young. He completed a master’s in economics at Columbia University where he meet Ben Graham a lecturer and famed investor.
Warren worked for his father who owed an investment banking company for the next three years during which he meet Susie Thompson and in 1952 they were married and had three children together. Warren didn’t have a lot of money at this point until he was asked by Ben Graham to join his company as a security analyst, which he did and by 1956 his fortune rose to $140,000.
In 1956 at the age of twenty five, Warren started his own investment company, the Buffett Partnership, using a small amount of his own funds and collecting around $100,000 from partners and family he managed to increase his capitol to $300,000 by the years end. One of the companies Warren invested in during his role as managing partner of the Buffett Partnership was a textile company called Berkshire Hathaway.
Berkshire Hathaway was eventually liquidated but the name was kept and turned into an investment business. Its main interest was with insurance, which added considerable cash flow for future investments. He liquidated the Buffett partnership in 1969, and spent the remainder of the year liquidating its portfolio.
Warren became chairman of the board and chief executive officer for Berkshire Hathaway in which he remains today. Berkshire Hathaway now owns more than forty companies employing more than 150,000 people.
In 1977 Warren and Susan separated but never divorced, She was also a significant stockholder in Berkshire Hathaway and a board member as well. Susan Buffett died in 2004, and Warren now lives with companion Astrid Menks whom he meet through his wife.
Warren Buffett is also a generous and charitable philanthropist, having started the Buffett Foundation which he donates more than $12 million a year to. On his death he plans to disburse 99% of his wealth to good causes through the Buffett foundation.
In 2005, Forbes magazine estimated Warren Buffett's wealth to be $44 billion.
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