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July 2008 issue of Pulses carries stories of our experiences in Omaha.

HAVE YOU read the amazing news several hours ago that someone has made a winning bid of US$2.11 million (S$2.88 million) to have lunch with Warren Buffett?

He is Zhao Danyang, a Chinese national who manages private equity and whose bid will be paid to charity. Very little is known about him but I am sure more news will emerge. 

For now, it's enough to know that Buffett's wit and wisdom are so highly prized.

These were the qualities we - a group of six Singaporeans - thoroughly enjoyed last month (May) when we travelled to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway AGM.

Buffett, 77, the richest man on the planet, has chosen to live in his hometown of Omaha, a city of 400,000 residents.

It’s far removed from the wheeling and dealing of Wall Street, whispers of insider news and what not.

Yet, in his own time, Buffett has identified great companies selling at great prices and bought them – and made loads of money. By Forbes’ recent estimate, he had US$62 billion in net worth.

In May every year, thousands of people converge on Omaha to attend the AGM.

This year there were 31,000, including us from Singapore: Audi Wong, a commercial pilot, and his wife Jana, a home-maker; David Leoy and Melvin Tan, investment analysts; Kathy Zhang, managing director of Financial PR, an investor relations company; and myself, previously a Straits Times journalist who recently co-founded this portal, www.nextinsight.net

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Oh yeah! Omaha!

We not only attended the AGM but also went to the places that have become iconic because of Buffett.

Improbable as it seems, we met Singaporeans - including Dr Ansgar Cheng and his wife, Moonlake. There was also a group of MBA students from the National University of Singapore.

I have written about our experiences for a 10-page special in the current issue of Pulses magazine, which is available at Spinelli’s (free coffee is thrown in) and leading newsstands for $5.50. Enjoy! Click: Our visit to Warren Buffett's Berkshire AGM: Wow!

If you have any questions on aspects such as the logistics of the trip and costs, send me an email at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

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We hired a seven-seater Chrysler to move around Omaha. In the picture, front row: Kathy Zhang. Back row, L-R: Leong Chan Teik, David Leoy.
 

 

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Berkshire Hathaway is located in a small office on the 14th floor of Kiewit Plaza. There are only 19 staff. In the picture, David Leoy.



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Melvin Tan at Berkshire: If only Buffett would step out that very moment to go to the rest room or whatever....



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Despite having a GPS navigator and Buffett's address, we figured we had to ask this local passer-by for directions to the house.



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This is the Dutch colonial home that Buffett lives in. He bought it for US$31,000 in 1958 after he got married. It has spacious grounds but it has not an iota of pretension. In the picture, at left are Audi and wife Jana.



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We arrived at 7.30 am where the AGM would be held. The cold was biting.

 

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31,000 people at the AGM this year! The biggest AGM in the world, and the most interesting.



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Attending the AGM too was the famous Mario Gabelli, founder and chairman of his own investment fund.



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At Dairy Queen's reception – Dr Gregory Choi (USA), Dr Ansgar Cheng and Moonlake Lee enjoying a complimentary dipped cone courtesy of Morningstar and Robert Miles.



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Moon with the Fruit of the Looms guys.



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Nebraska Furniture Mart is one of many Berkshire-owned companies. In the picture: Kathy Zhang.
 




Several other pictures have earlier been published at the bottom of the following articles:

WARREN BUFFETT: How important is $ to him, what is real success, etc?


WARREN BUFFETT: Insights and wisdom of the greatest investor

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Comments  

#2 Leong Chan Teik 2011-07-15 10:19
Dear D, I went as a friend of a shareholder. He said he needed only to produce evidence of his purchase of Berkshire 'B' shares. This he did through the broker's purchase note (the standard note that you get every time u buy & sell shares). With a scanned image of this note, my friend emailed the organiser of the Berkshire AGM and that was it....They posted the registration forms, we booked our hotel and flights, etc. If u need more info, let me know...
#1 D 2011-07-15 09:52
Hi,

For most Singapore-based investors, purchases of U.S. stocks are made through nominee accounts.

If so, how can we get invites to the AGMs of these U.S. companies, and in Berkshire's case, its ASM?

Hope you can share some insights, and how you got to attend the Berkshire ASM.

Thanks.

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