Charlie Munger, the wise investor and right-hand man to Warren Buffett at Berkshire Hathaway, has passed away at the age of 99. He died peacefully in a California hospital, as confirmed by a press release from Berkshire Hathaway. Munger, who would have turned 100 on New Year’s Day, played a crucial role in building Berkshire Hathaway and was known for his inspiration and wisdom.
Warren Buffett, in a statement, acknowledged Munger’s significant contributions, stating that Berkshire Hathaway wouldn’t be where it is today without Munger’s insight and participation. Munger, with a fortune estimated at $2.3 billion in early 2023, had a diverse career as a real estate attorney, chairman of the Daily Journal Corp., member of the Costco board, philanthropist, and architect.
Munger’s influence on Buffett’s investment strategy was noteworthy. He shifted Buffett’s focus from buying troubled companies at low prices to investing in higher-quality but undervalued businesses. An early example was the successful purchase of See’s Candies in 1972, a decision credited to Munger, which has since generated over $2 billion in sales for Berkshire.
Munger, often characterized by his thick glasses, lost his left eye in 1980 due to complications from cataract surgery. He served as the chairman and CEO of Wesco Financial until 2011 when Berkshire acquired the remaining shares of the company.
Born in Omaha in 1924, Munger enlisted in the Army Air Corps in 1943 and later graduated from Harvard Law School in 1948. His partnership with Warren Buffett began in 1959, and they developed a close bond over their shared values and approach to value investing.
Apart from his contributions to the business world, Munger was also a generous philanthropist, donating millions to educational institutions. He believed in a simple and cheerful approach to life, emphasizing the importance of avoiding envy and resentment and dealing with reliable people.
Charlie Munger’s legacy extends beyond his immense wealth, leaving a lasting impact on the world of investing and business.