Warren Buffett, the investment legend dubbed the ‘Oracle of Omaha,’ recently shared his plans for Berkshire Hathaway and his vast fortune in case of his passing. This announcement coincided with his generous donation of millions of Bserkhire Hathaway shares to four family-associated charitable trusts.
In a rare move, the 93-year-old billionaire converted 1,600 Class A shares into 2,400,000 Class B shares, gifting 1,500,000 shares to The Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation and 300,000 shares to The Sherwood Foundation, The Howard G. Buffett Foundation, and NoVo Foundation respectively. These donations, totaling $866 million, build upon last year’s contributions of $759 million during the same period.
Buffett has made it a tradition to engage in philanthropy around Thanksgiving, previously supporting charities led by his children and the Susan Thompson Buffett Foundation, named after his late wife.
In a heartfelt letter addressed to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders, Buffett admitted to his age but reassured everyone, saying, “I feel good but fully realize I am playing in extra innings.” Unlike his usual annual messages to shareholders, this one also spoke about substantial stock donations.
Despite being in his nineties, Buffett remains active, traveling extensively, including a notable visit to Japan for discussions with top trading houses. Analysts believe Buffett’s decisions influenced a stock rally in Japan following his visit.
Buffett emphasized his unwavering belief in wealth and philanthropy, having donated an estimated $52 billion to charitable causes since 2006, with a significant chunk going to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
Touching upon his plans for distributing his wealth, Buffett reiterated his intent to donate ‘99%-plus’ of his fortune to his charitable trust. He confirmed his three children, aged between 65 and 70, as the executors of his current will. Buffett outlined guidelines for trustees, advocating for adaptable rules to navigate evolving philanthropic laws.
Additionally, Buffett shared details about his will, expressing his wish for it to be transparent and available for public inspection at the Douglas County Courthouse, aiming for simplicity and openness.
Looking ahead to the future of Berkshire Hathaway, a company he became associated with in 1962, Buffett expressed confidence in its continued success after his tenure. While acknowledging the inevitability of errors in any organization, Buffett stressed Berkshire Hathaway’s ability to rectify mistakes, emphasizing the importance of strong leadership.
Buffett wrapped up by reaffirming Berkshire Hathaway’s lasting legacy and its potential to earn its reputation independently in the future. This announcement underscores Buffett’s commitment to philanthropy and responsible succession planning, aligning well with the values of ImpactWealth.Org, promoting purposeful wealth management and impactful philanthropy.