Warren Buffet has hired a second investment professional to be part of his succession team. This time Buffet tapped hedge fund manager Ted Weschler, 50, from Charlottesville, VA..
Mr. Weschler currently runs Peninsula Capital Advisors LLC, which manages roughly $2 billion in assets. He will close down his hedge fund by 2012 before joining Berkshire Hathaway, according to a report from The Wall Street Journal.
So what does it take to be part of the Oracle of Omaha’s succession team? Well, apparently both of them share a taste for simplicity and a love for pouring over 10-K reports like they were copies of Playboy magazine, to quote Buffet.
Weschler reportedly runs his hedge fund from a small office on the second floor of a two-story building in Charolottesville, with just one office assistant and one analyst. He also spends a great deal of time digging deep into the fundamentals of companies and tends to hold investments for longer periods, rather than take the rapid trading approach favored by others on Wall Street.
A private investor in Richmond, Va. who has worked with Weschler says his style is very similar to Buffet’s. “Ted’s investment philosophy is knowing everything you can before you invest and sticking with it through thick and thin after you invest,” said Jimmy Wheat. “He’s not going to start acting like a kid in a candy store.”
So far it has paid off. Weschler recently told his shareholders that $100 invested with Peninsula since the funds inception in January, 2000, has grown to $1,134. That compares quite favorably with the same $100 put into the S&P 500 Index, which would have grown to only $104 over the same time period.
Weschler joins another hedge fund manager picked last year to be part of Buffet’s succession team, 40-year-old Todd Combs. Together, the two managers will oversee approximately $3 billion of Berkshire’s $110 billion holdings, while Buffet will continue to control the other 95%.
Berkshire may also hire a third investment manager. Together, they would manage the Berkshire portfolio upon Buffet’s eventual departure from the firm, working in conjunction with an as-yet-to-be named CEO for the company.
Surprisingly, Weschler met Warren Buffet last year and again in 2011 after winning a meal with him at a charity auction. Which begs the question: have you used charity events or silent auctions to gain access to influential clients or prospective employers? Add your comments below.