Warren Buffett is currently the chairman & CEO of Berkshire Hathaway. At 83 years old, he is renowned as the most successful investor and business tycoon of the 20th century. It was in 1979 that Buffett was first listed in Forbes 400 for the first time. Since then he was always included in the list and went on a steady climb to the top spot of the list. Even with this distinction he is a well-grounded person. He does not believe in dynastic wealth and have thus pledged more than half of his wealth to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Net Worth: US$58.5 Billion
Source: Berkshire Hathaway
Born: August 30, 1930 (83)
At age 83 and just after completing a radiation treatment therapy for prostate cancer, business minded Warren Buffett is not slowed down by cancer. In fact, just last June 2013, he inked a deal and included H.J. Heinz ketchup maker under his long list of company portfolios.
He admittedly said that the worst investment he made was buying Berkshire Hathaway, a textile manufacturing company in 1962. By 1985, he had sold the mills thereby moving Berkshire Hathaway into new sectors—the insurance industry.
He earned his first million in 1962 through the concerted efforts of his several investment partnerships. He was first listed in Forbes 400 list in 1979 when his Berkshire Hathaway investment portfolio of shares jumped up to $1,310 per share from $775, making Buffett’s net worth rise to $620 million and from there, the rest was history.
As Buffett has said, in hindsight the textile manufacturing company he bought was the worst investment he ever made. But, since moving Berkshire Hathaway to an industry aligned with his strengths, it started to become one of the most successful business companies in the world.
The first investment holding that Buffett bought under Berkshire Hathaway investments was a Baltimore department store named Hochschild, Kohn and Co. Then there was the acquisition of other businesses like Coca Cola Company, Salomon Inc., ABC, WESCO, Washington Post Company and others.
During a routine testing, Buffett was diagnosed on April 11, 2012 with prostate cancer stage 1. From mid-July of the same year, he underwent daily radiation treatment that took two months to complete. Fortunately for him, the therapy did not take away any of his energy. In fact, he felt great as documented in one of his letters to the shareholders of his company. After the completion of the radiation therapy on September 15, 2012, he announced that his battle with cancer was over.
Warren Buffett and first wife, the late Susan Buffett
Warren Buffett got married in 1952 to Susan Buffett but the two started living separately in 1977 in good terms without undergoing a divorce. They had three children namely: Peter, Howard and Susie. According to reports, Buffett lived with Astrid Menks, his current wife, after Susie left for San Francisco. After Susie died in July 2004 and during Buffett’s 76th birthday, he got married to his long time live-in partner, Menks.
Warren Buffett's second wife, Astrid Menks
Buffett is a well-known philanthropist and even a philosopher too. He has a great way with words, expressing his thoughts in thought provoking words. He was documented saying that he does not believe in dynastic wealth and have thus pledged 83% of his wealth to the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation—with conditions, of course.
He also has his very own foundation, the Buffett Foundation to which most of the $2.6 Billion estate of his late wife passed to. Different foundations also took advantage of his famous persona by auctioning a lunch with him that garnered up to millions of dollars in bids.
Buffett still lives in the same home in Omaha which he bought in 1958