Innovation/Global Crisis Blog

The Man Who Paid $5 m. for Lunch – and It Was Worth Every Penny!

By Shlomo Maital   

   Ted Weschler, Warren Buffett



This is a true story.  A little-known hedge fund manager paid $5 m. for lunch – and it paid off in spades.   Of  course, we all know there is no free lunch.  But a $5 m. lunch? 

    The hedge fund manager is named Ted Weschler, manager of Peninsula Capital Advisors, a Virginia-based hedge fund with $2 bn. in assets.   In 2012 Weschler will join Berkshire Hathaway, Warren Buffett’s company, to manage a $1 b. – $3 b. slice of Berkshire’s $66 b. portfolio of equities. 

    How did he get this great job?

    Weschler spent over $5 m. in a charity auction, in which the prize was …lunch with the Oracle of Omaha, Warren Buffett.   

    What was said? What was discussed? We don’t know. But clearly it was enough to impress Buffett sufficiently for him to hire the impetuous Ted Weschler.    Along with the announcement of Weschler’s appointment at Berkshire, came an announcement liquidating Peninsula and distributing the proceeds to its owners and shareholders. 

   Has Buffett lost his touch?  Last month he bought $5 b. worth of Bank of America shares, which have since dropped sharply.   Can Weschler restore Buffett’s Midas touch?  Stay tuned. 

  •  Source: Telis Demos, Financial Times, p. 1, Sept. 13, 2011.