Berkshire Hathaway 2018 Annual Meeting Audience Question # 19

How Berkshire would look 50 years from now

Warren Buffett:

Jonathan?

Jonathan Brandt:

Hello…

Carol Loomis:

You skipped me.

Warren Buffett:

Did I skip…? I skipped Carol?

Carol Loomis:

Yup.

Warren Buffett:

Oh. I’m sorry.

Carol Loomis:

OK.

Warren Buffett:

OK.

Carol Loomis:

This question, and I would concede it is not a small one, comes from Gideon Pollack of Montreal.

He says, “The world knows generally how the looks of Berkshire Hathaway have changed since you began to run the company in 1965. Berkshire was then a tiny northeastern, textile company. And now it is the number-four company on the Fortune 500.

“What about the next 50 years? Could you give us your view of what Berkshire looks like in 2068?”

Warren Buffett:

I think it’ll look a long way away.

No, the answer is I don’t know. And I didn’t know, 50 years ago, what it would like now, I mean…

It will be based on certain principles. But where that leads, you know, we will find out and we’ll have people that are thinking about different things than I am. And we’ll have a world that’s different. But…

We will be… I very much hope and believe that we will be… that we’ll be as shareholder- oriented as any large company in the world. We will look at our shareholders as partners and we will be trying to do with their money exactly what we’d do with our own, not seeking to get an edge on them. And who knows what else will be happening then?

Charlie?

Charlie Munger:

Well, I want to talk to the younger shareholders in the group. Those of you who, after we are gone, sell your Berkshire stock and do something else with it, helped by your many friends, I think are going to do worse.

So I would advise you to keep the faith.

By the way, some of that has already happened in many families.

Warren Buffett:

I’ll give his answer next time now that I see it get all of that applause.

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