Regarded as Warren Buffett’s right hand, billionaire philanthropist, and Vice Chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, Charlie Munger died on Tuesday aged 99 at a hospital in California.
A statement from American multinational conglomerate holding company, Berkshire Hathaway stated “Munger peacefully died this morning at a California hospital,”
Speaking of the unfortunate demise of his closest aide, Warren Buffett, the CEO of Berkshire Hathaway said that the company could not have been built to its present status without Charlie’s “inspiration, wisdom and participation.”
Notably, Born on 1st January 1924, Munger would have turned 100 on New Year’s day.
Munger’s death comes a week after Buffett donated $866 million worth of Berkshire’s stock as he looks to hang his boots after a journey of nearly six decades.
“At 93, I feel good but fully realize I am playing in extra innings,” said Buffett in a letter to shareholders.
Sharing his condolences, Apple CEO Tim Cook took on to his X handle and posted,
“A titan of business and keen observer of the world around him, Charlie Munger helped build an American institution, and through his wisdom and insights, inspired a generation of leaders. He will be sorely missed. Rest in peace Charlie.”
A titan of business and keen observer of the world around him, Charlie Munger helped build an American institution, and through his wisdom and insights, inspired a generation of leaders. He will be sorely missed. Rest in peace Charlie. pic.twitter.com/vNGDktOAhz— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) November 28, 2023
The investment world reacted to the death of Charlie Munger.
Sad afternoon on the passing of Charlie Munger – Warren Buffett’s #2. Full life at 99 years young who taught us a ton over the years.— Stephanie Link (@Stephanie_Link) November 28, 2023
“He was always telling stories of how people who had it all brought themselves to ruin, [and] that really made a big impact on my life,” said Whitney Tilson, research editor at Stansberry, told CNBC.
“Charlie Munger was a brilliant attorney,” George Seay, Annandale Capital chairman said to Yahoo Finance. “He wasn’t just a great investor with Buffett. He was a very accomplished attorney. He was kind of a renaissance man. He was good at a lot of things.”
“In Charlie, I find solace that in avoiding the mistakes others make out of misaligned incentives, greed, hysteria, or peer pressure, you’re usually going against the grain,” Wesley Chan, co-founder and managing partner of venture capital firm FPV, said in a LinkedIn post. “It’s something that I take to heart as an investor and as a friend of many founders, who have their own lonely journeys as well.”
Charlie Munger, a brief background
Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger’s friendship dates back to former took over of Berkshire Hathaway. In 1962, Warren Buffett began buying stock in Berkshire Hathaway after noticing it was statistically undervalued. Buffett bought the stock with the idea that as Berkshire closed textile mills and freed capital, there would be a tender offer at some point and they could sell the stock for a profit.
Munger was a trained attorney with expertise in real estate, a name partner at a Los Angeles-based law firm ‘Munger, Tolles & Olson LLP‘, before joining hands with Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway in 1978.
An alumnus of the Harvard Law School, Munger held a degree in meteorology. Reports indicate that it was Munger’s passion for engineering that led to Berkshire Hathaway’s investment in Chinese auto company BYD.
According to various reports, However, Berkshire Hathaway has been consistently trimming its stake in BYD with the most recent sale taking place on October 25 this year, taking Berkshire’s stake in the Hong Kong-listed company down to 7.98% from 8.05% earlier.
As the world mourns the death of the legendary philanthropist, a recent CNBC interview with Munger is doing the rounds – shedding light on his personal side. Two weeks ago, CNBC’s Becky Quick sat down with Charlie Munger to talk about his life and career.
A notable statement of Munger from the interview said,
I’ve written my obituary the way I’ve lived my life and if you want to pay attention to it that’s alright with me. And if they want to ignore it, that’s okay with me too. I’ll be dead what difference will it make. And so, but I think it’s a good – it’s not a bad idea. Warren and I both lived in the same house for decade after decade after decade. All our friends get rich and build better – bigger and better houses. And naturally we can – we both considered bigger and better houses. I had a huge number of children, so it was justifiable even. And I still decided not to live a life where I look like the Duke of Worcester or something. And I was gonna avoid it. I did it on purpose. said Munger to CNBC