The snowball is a long awaited biography about one of the world's richest people, and the fastest accumulator of wealth in history â€“ Warren Buffett. I hadn't even heard of the book when I found it by accident at a local department store, but I sure had heard of Warren Buffett once or twice, and snapped up the book in such a hurry that I almost left without paying for it. It's funny because not long before that I had been thinking about Warren Buffett and wondering about just how he had started out in his wealth accumulation.
Anyhow, back to Warren Buffett and 'The Snowball'â€¦ I had been intrigue for a while about this guy I had heard about, as well as his company Berkshire Hathaway, which has some sort of stratospheric share price. What I liked best about what I heard was his apparently meteoric rise into the investing stratosphere â€“ while doing it all very quietly. However I hadn't heard that much about this Warren Buffett character, which is why I jumped at the chance of reading a book all about him.
A Warren Buffett autobiography?
No it's not an autobiography, and while I would have really enjoyed the story about the man told by the man himself, this biography is great reading as well. It offers some great insights into the man and his life and tells some entertaining anecdotes as well. 'The Snowball' talks much of the young Buffett, a child who was almost obsessed with collecting and making money â€“ showing the early signs of the astute businessman he would prove to be by running various successful businesses at an age when other children were running the streets.
Warren Buffett â€“ the 'Oracle of Omaha'
One of my favourite anecdotes in the book â€“ by far- has to be a speech he gave to an assembled audience of government representatives and mega rich business leaders. I don't exactly recall the occasion without re-reading the book, but it was before the internet bubble had burst on the stock market. Newly minted millionaires were aghast to hear that Warren Buffett predicted the collapse of their companies, and their very industry. This was one of the few public predictions he made, and he made it against the background of rising IT stock prices, and a falling share price of his own flagship company â€“ Berkshire Hathaway.
Over the years Warren Buffett had weathered much criticism about having missed the next big thing in terms of the new technology stocks â€“ being the internet related business newly floated on the stock market. He never invested in them, and refused to do so despite the fact that their share price was skyrocketing and his falling. True, he missed out on a potentially huge profit, but I like that he stuck with his belief and his plan â€“ And he won out in the end. I would have loved to have been there that day, when in front of all those newly rich people he predicted the downfall of their businesses â€“ and sure enough, a short period later the bubble well and truly burst. Warren Buffett â€“ the Oracle of Omaha, an interesting man, quite aside from his ridiculous financial acumen and successes. Read 'The Snowball', and Enjoy!