With a net worth of more than $60 billion, Warren Buffett is truly a one-of-a-kind billionaire, states HBO in a story about its new documentary “Becoming Warren Buffett”. “Now 86, the legendary investor still lives in a modest home in Omaha, and continues to drive himself to the office every morning to manage Berkshire Hathaway, the fourth-largest public company in the world. But more surprising than his humble lifestyle and self-effacing personality are Buffett’s moral integrity and unique mind, which drove him not only to become the most successful businessman in the world, but also an unparalleled philanthropist.
“With unprecedented access to his day-to-day personal life, Becoming Warren Buffett tells the improbable story of how an ambitious, numbers-obsessed boy from Nebraska became one of the richest, most-respected men in the world. The definitive documentary on Buffett, this candid portrait sheds new light on a man who has helped shape the way Americans view capitalism and, more recently, philanthropy. Told primarily in Buffett’s own words, the film features never-before-released home videos, family photographs, archival footage and interviews with family and friends.
“Buffett, along with partner Charlie Munger, would build his fortune at Berkshire Hathaway, a struggling textile company that he turned into a behemoth holding corporation with stakes in Coke, Heinz, Geico and other blue-chip companies” – which includes Business Wire.
As it turned out, three years ago, Danny Selnick, Business Wire’s D.C.-based Senior Vice President for Public Policy & LatinoWire services, was at the Berkshire Hathaway annual meeting and as Buffett came by the Business Wire booth, Selnick, also a magic enthusiast and performer, told Buffett a story about how he got to the Century Link Center where the annual meeting was being held. Selnick told Buffett how he arrived at the airport in Omaha and got into a taxi, but realized then he only had four $1 dollars bills in his wallet (showing Buffett the $4 single dollars) while the taxi ride cost $20. Selnick, magically changed the four $1 bills into four $5 bills so he could pay the driver.
Selnick showed Buffett how it was done and as he saw the magic happen, Buffett stopped eating his Dairy Queen ice-cream bar and said, “These are better returns than Charlie Munger gets.” Selnick replied, “Mr. Buffett, the IRS really doesn’t like it when magicians create money out of nowhere because we’d have to pay the taxes on that – so now that I’m here at the exhibit hall, I’ll just change those four $5 bills back onto ones” – which I did.”
That scene between Buffett and Selnick is shown, in part, in the HBO documentary.