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Buffett lunch auction raises record $2.63 million for charity

By 양승진

Published : June 12, 2011 - 15:09

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Warren Buffett’s annual charity lunch auction raised a record $2.63 million on the final day of the weeklong contest after the bidder who’d already won offered more cash to set the mark.

The revised winning bid for a steakhouse meal with the 80-year-old billionaire beat by $100 the record set last year by an unidentified donor. This year’s contest is the 12th benefiting San Francisco’s Glide charity. The victorious bidder, who had won Friday’s auction earlier with a pledge of $2.35 million, wasn’t immediately identified, said Denise Lamott, a Glide spokeswoman.

“This money will go to those who are in deep distress,” Rev. Cecil Williams, Glide’s founder, said at an event hosted by the charity last night in San Francisco. “Thank you to Warren Buffett and to the bidders.” The auction is held on eBay Inc.’s website.

Buffett attracts tens of thousands of admirers to Omaha, Nebraska, each year for meetings of his Berkshire Hathaway Inc. There, shareholders line up for hours to get a seat in a basketball arena where Buffett fields questions on finance, public policy and life. The winner of the auction gets to meet Buffett at New York’s Smith & Wollensky steakhouse and has free rein to steer the table talk.

“I’d love to be a bidder, but if I did, my kids would be going to community college,” said David Rolfe, who attended the Berkshire meeting in April as chief investment officer of Wedgewood Partners Inc. The firm oversees $1 billion.

Past winners have said they were motivated to bid by Buffett’s stature and the charitable cause that their funds support. Greenlight Capital Inc.’s David Einhorn, who won the 2003 auction with a $250,100 bid, said at the time he wanted to “learn from the master.” Guy Spier of Aquamarine Funds LLC has said he has used his recognition as winner in 2007 to open doors to new business contacts.

Glide, a favorite charity of Buffett’s late first wife, has garnered almost $11 million since the first auction in 2000 went for $25,000. Courtenay Wolfe of Canada’s Salida Capital led a group that paid $1.68 million to win in 2008. Last year’s winner has remained anonymous.

The winner can bring as many as seven friends to the lunch.

Buffett rose to prominence through five decades of investing success. He accumulated the world’s third-largest personal fortune by picking stocks and making takeovers for Omaha-based Berkshire. Buffett has said that 99 percent of his wealth will go to philanthropy within 10 years of his death.

Glide says it serves almost 1 million meals annually to the homeless and poor. Susan Buffett, who was married to Buffett until her death in 2004, volunteered at the charity.

“You really want to make your charitable dollar go as far as it can,” Buffett said in an interview last year. “When you get a proven quantity like Glide, and you get the people running it who you watch do it for 40 years and do it magnificently, they are the ones, in my view, to support.” (Bloomberg)



버핏 '점심 한끼' 263만弗..최고가 경신

(오마하.뉴욕 AP.로이터=연합뉴스) '투자의 귀재' 워런 버핏(80) 버크셔 해서웨 이 회장과 함께 하는 점심이 사상 최고가인 약 263만달러(28억원)에 팔렸다.

    버핏 회장과의 점심은 10일(현지시간) 밤 끝난 이베이 온라인 경매에서 애초 23 4만5천678달러(약 25억4천만원)에 낙찰됐다.

    그러나 이번 경매 낙찰가가 역대 최고였던 지난해 밥값에 못 미쳤다는 이야기에 익명의 낙찰자가 작년 낙찰가보다 111달러를 더 내겠다고 밝히면서 간신히 최고가를  경신했다.

    5일부터 시작된 이번 경매에는 2명이 응찰해 8번 입찰가를 제시했으며 9명이 77 번 입찰가를 제시했던 작년 경매보다는 그 열기가 덜 했다.

    이번 경매의 낙찰자는 뉴욕 맨해튼의 스테이크 전문식당 '스미스 앤드 월런스키 '에서 버핏 회장과 수 시간 동안 점심을 먹으면서 그에게서 투자를 중심으로 한  고 견을 얻게 된다.

    경매 수익금은 빈곤퇴치 활동을 하는 샌프란시스코 소재 자선단체 글라이드  재 단에 기부된다.