Right now, while this is being published and if everything is going as planned, Luca and I are in Omaha, Nebraska. By now we should be already registered to attend tomorrow the annual shareholders meeting of Berkshire Hathaway, company famous for its CEO and Chairman, Warren Buffett.
While studying an MBA at EOI business school in Seville some 5 years ago, I developed a special interest in investing. I started reading some books and this led me to the bible of them all, Benjamin Graham’s “Intelligent Investor”, which I have referred to in this blog a number of times.
Warren Buffett, of World fame, was one of Graham’s disciples. He started very early setting up small businesses and investing in stocks. Decades later, he is known as the “oracle of Omaha” and considered to be on of the best investors ever.
About 2 years ago, Luca and I decided to invest in Berkshire Hathaway, mainly to acquire the right to attend this weekend’s party (you may call us freaks, right). Sure, we have arranged a nice holiday trip around it passing by Montreal, DC, Chicago and even Des Moines (!). But the end of this trip, was attending the shareholders’ meeting (others travel to attend a concert of U2!).
If you want to grasp what the experience may feel like, start by reading one of his letters to the shareholders of BRK, e.g. this year’s letter [PDF]. It’s 26 pages, ok, but it won’t take you more than 1 or 2 hours, and who knows, it may change your view of saving, investing, managing businesses, doing you a great favour. Apart from that, you’ll have a great fun reading it, as it is a very entertaining and humorous piece.
Finally, a positive note from an extract of the letter to reflect on, in today’s times:
“Don’t let that reality spook you. Throughout my lifetime, politicians and pundits have constantly moaned about terrifying problems facing America. Yet our citizens now live an astonishing six times better than when I was born. The prophets of doom have overlooked the all-important factor that is certain: Human potential is far from exhausted, and the American system for unleashing that potential – a system that has worked wonders for over two centuries despite frequent interruptions for recessions and even a Civil War – remains alive and effective.”