Warren Buffett

The Oracle of Omaha

Warren Buffett

When it comes to investing, Warren Buffett is a name that almost everyone knows. He is known as the Oracle of Omaha and is one of the most successful investors of all time. With a net worth of over $100 billion, Buffett is also one of the richest people in the world.

Born in Omaha, Nebraska in 1930, Buffett’s rise to the top of the investing world is a story of grit, intelligence, and an unwavering adherence to a set of principles that have served him well over the course of his long and illustrious career.

From an early age, he showed an interest in making money. At the age of six, he bought six packs of Coca-Cola for 25 cents and sold each bottle for 5 cents, making a profit of 30 cents. By the time he was 11, he had bought his first stock, Cities Service Preferred, which he sold for a small profit a few months later. As a teenager, he delivered newspapers and magazines and even filed tax returns for his family and friends.

Buffett’s interest in investing began in high school when he read Benjamin Graham’s book, “The Intelligent Investor.” Benjamin Graham, the father of value investing greatly influenced Buffett’s investment philosophy. He went on to study under Graham at Columbia University and would later work for his investment firm.

In 1956, Buffett started his own investment partnership, Buffett Partnership Ltd., with $105,000 in capital. Over the next 13 years, he averaged a 29.5% annual return, compared to the S&P 500’s 7.4% annual return over the same period. In 1965, Buffett acquired a struggling textile company called Berkshire Hathaway and turned it into a holding company for his investments.

Buffett’s investment strategy is based on finding undervalued companies with strong fundamentals and holding them for the long term. He looks for companies with a sustainable competitive advantage, strong management, and good financials. He also places a high value on the company’s ability to generate cash flow.

Buffett is famous for his annual letter to shareholders, where he shares his thoughts on investing and his investment strategy. In his 1994 letter, he wrote, “We try to buy stocks in businesses that are so wonderful that an idiot can run them. Because sooner or later, one will.”


The Buffett Partnership

After finishing his studies at Columbia, Buffett went to work for his mentor, Graham, at his investment firm, Graham-Newman. It was there that Buffett honed his skills as a value investor, using Graham’s principles to identify undervalued stocks that he could buy at a discount.

In 1956, Buffett founded the Buffett Partnership, which would later become the vehicle for his investing success. Over the course of the next decade, the partnership grew at a remarkable rate, thanks in no small part to Buffett’s investment strategies and his ability to pick winners.

In 1965, Buffett dissolved the partnership and used the proceeds to purchase a controlling interest in Berkshire Hathaway, a struggling textile company. From there, he set about transforming the company into a holding company that would invest in a wide range of businesses.

As the Chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, Buffett has amassed a net worth of over $100 billion through his investment savvy and adherence to principles.


Investment Strategies and Principles

At the heart of Buffett’s success as an investor are his principles. These principles, which are based on the work of Benjamin Graham, are focused on finding undervalued companies and investing in them for the long term. Value investing involves buying stocks that are undervalued by the market, with the belief that they will eventually rise in price to reflect their true value. This approach requires patience, discipline, and a focus on long-term results.

One of the key principles of Buffett’s investing strategy is his focus on the intrinsic value of a company. According to Buffett, the intrinsic value of a company is the sum of all future cash flows that the company will generate over its lifetime, discounted to its present value. By focusing on the intrinsic value of a company, rather than its market price, Buffett is able to identify companies that are undervalued by the market.

Another of the key principles that Buffett adheres to is the concept of “margin of safety.” This principle involves buying stocks that are undervalued by a significant margin, to protect against downside risk. According to Buffett, “The first rule of investing is don’t lose money; the second rule is don’t forget rule number one.”

Another key principle of Buffett’s investing strategy is his emphasis on a company’s economic moat. An economic moat refers to a company’s competitive advantage or the factors that make it difficult for competitors to enter the market such as a strong brand, a unique product, or a high barrier to entry. Companies with strong economic moats are better able to withstand market downturns and generate long-term growth. By investing in companies with strong economic moats, Buffett is able to identify companies that are likely to generate consistent profits over the long term.

Buffett also emphasizes the importance of patience and a long-term perspective in investing. He has famously said, “Our favourite holding period is forever.” Buffett’s approach involves buying stocks with the intention of holding them for the long term, allowing the company’s true value to be realized over time.



One of the most famous deals made by Buffett was his investment in American Express in 1964. At the time, the company was facing a scandal involving a massive fraud by one of its employees. As a result, its stock price plummeted, and many investors were fleeing the company.

However, Buffett saw an opportunity and invested $13 million in the company, buying shares at a deep discount. He believed in the underlying strength of the American Express brand and saw the scandal as a temporary setback. His investment paid off handsomely as the stock price rebounded, and he made a fortune for himself and his investors.


See’s Candies

One of Buffett’s most famous deals was the purchase of See’s Candies in 1972. He bought the company for $25 million and has said that it was one of the best investments he ever made. See’s Candies had a strong brand and a loyal customer base, and it generated a lot of cash flow. Buffett allowed the management team to run the company independently, and he only intervened when necessary. See’s Candies has been profitable for Berkshire Hathaway every year since the acquisition.



Another famous deal was the acquisition of GEICO, a car insurance company, by Berkshire Hathaway in 1996. At the time, GEICO was struggling financially and its stock price was depressed. However, Buffett saw the company’s potential and recognized its strong brand and competitive advantages.

Buffett’s acquisition of GEICO proved to be a major success, as the company’s stock price increased significantly in the years following the acquisition. Today, GEICO is one of the largest car insurance companies in the United States, and Berkshire Hathaway is the company’s largest shareholder.


Goldman Sachs

One of Buffett’s most lucrative deals came in 2008, during the height of the financial crisis. At the time, many of the world’s largest banks were on the verge of collapse, and panic was spreading throughout the financial markets.

In the midst of this chaos, Buffett saw an opportunity. He offered to invest $5 billion in Goldman Sachs, one of the world’s largest investment banks, in exchange for preferred shares and warrants to purchase common shares. The move was seen as a vote of confidence in the bank, and it helped to restore confidence in the financial markets.


Famous Quotes

Buffett is known for his pithy and insightful quotes about investing and business. Here are a few of his most famous quotes:

“Rule No. 1: Never lose money. Rule No. 2: Never forget rule No.1.”

“Price is what you pay. Value is what you get.”

“In the business world, the rearview mirror is always clearer than the windshield.”

“It’s far better to buy a wonderful company at a fair price than a fair company at a wonderful price.”

“Be fearful when others are greedy, and be greedy when others are fearful.”


Little-Known Trivia

Despite his wealth, Buffett is known for his frugal lifestyle. He still lives in the same house he bought in 1958 for $31,500 and drives a modest car. He has said that his goal is not to make money, but to have fun and to do what he loves.

He allegedly eats at McDonald’s for breakfast every day and prefers to drive himself to work rather than having a chauffeur.

Buffett is a skilled ukulele player and has been known to play at shareholder meetings.

In addition to his investment success, Buffett is also known for his philanthropy. In 2010, he and Bill Gates started the Giving Pledge, a campaign to encourage billionaires to give away at least half of their wealth to charity. He has pledged to give away 99% of his wealth to charity, with the majority going to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. 

Buffett’s investment style and success have earned him a reputation as one of the greatest investors of all time. His approach is not only based on his keen analytical skills but also his strong ethical principles. He is famous for his emphasis on honesty, integrity, and transparency, and his aversion to investments in companies that engage in unethical behaviour.



Warren Buffett’s investment strategies and principles have made him one of the most successful investors of all time. His ability to identify undervalued companies with strong fundamentals and his willingness to hold them for the long term coupled with his ethical principles has helped him achieve incredible success and earn a reputation as one of the greatest investors in history. 

As Buffett himself once said, “The stock market is a device for transferring money from the impatient to the patient.” His success serves as an inspiration to investors around the world who strive to achieve similar success and build long-term wealth.


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About the Author: Patrick Woodcraft

As a wholesale investment specialist, I help Certified Financial Planners and Qualified Financial Advisors with the information and education they need about investment funds that are poised to perform best for their clients through the volatile economic seasons ahead. Book a free 15 minute discovery call with me to see what value I can bring to your business and establish if we’re a good fit to work together.



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