Value Investing Conference and Genius of Warren Buffett Course
- On 01-May-2014, Thursday and 02-May-2014, Friday, business owners, investment professionals, business journalists, authors of business and Berkshire-specific books, private investors, and other luminaries present at the Value Investing Conference. $1395 before 31-Mar and $1670 after 31-Mar. Location: College of Business, University of Nebraska at Omaha, 6708 Pine Street, Omaha, NE 68106 [map]. Registration and information at: http://valueinvestorconference.com
- Associated event: Corporate Values Summit on 01-May-2014, Thursday
- Associated event: CFA Society of Nebraska and Value Investor Conference Dinner 2014 on 01-May-2014, Thursday
- Associated event: Genius of Warren Buffett Course from 28-Apr-2014, Monday through 30-Apr-2014, Wednesday.
Shareholder Events on 02-May-2014, Friday
- 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM: Participants of the Berkshire Hathaway-Brooks 5K can pick up their participant packets (consisting of identification, runner’s shirt, and other promotional materials.) The Berkshire Hathaway-Brooks 5K is scheduled for 04-May-2014, Sunday. Participant packet pick-up location: Peak Performance, Bakers Shopping Center, 563 N 155th Plaza Circle, Omaha NE 68154 [map], Phone: (402) 398-0100
- 4:00 PM to 7:00 PM: Informal YellowBRKer 2014 Gathering. Location: DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Omaha Downtown, 1616 Dodge St, Omaha, NE 68102 [map], Phone: (402) 346-7600. Short program at approximately 5:30 PM. Details: yellowbrkers.com/
- 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM: Cocktail Reception at Borsheim’s Fine Jewelry. Borsheim’s is Berkshire’s flagship jewelry retailer and the second biggest jewelry store in the world. This cocktail reception is exceptionally crowded. And Borsheim’s also sets a tent in the parking lot to accommodate the swarms of people enjoying the dinner buffet, open bar, and live musical entertainment, all complimentary. Vegetarians can get their fill of broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, and crackers. Location: Borsheim’s, 120 Regency Parkway, Omaha NE 68114 [map], (800) 642-4438.
Shareholder Events on 03-May-2014, Saturday
- 7:00 AM: Doors Open at CenturyLink Center for the annual meeting. Shareholders, young and old, assemble hours before the opening of the doors to the CenturyLink center and, as soon as the doors are unlocked, run as quickly as they can to get the best seats in the house.
- 7:00 AM: Complementary breakfast: free pastries and bottled drinks in the stands at CenturyLink Center.
- 7:30 AM to 4:15 PM: Shop for products from dozens of Berkshire subsidiaries in the 194,300-square-foot hall next to the meeting area. The most crowded stores are usually those of See’s Candies, Fruit of the Loom, Bookworm, Justin Boots, and Brooks shoes.
- 7:30 AM: The third International Newspaper Tossing Challenge. Challenge Warren Buffett in folding (no rubber bands allowed) and tossing a 36 to 42 page-newspaper 35 feet away into a Clayton Home porch. If you get the newspaper closer to the doorstep than Warren can, he’ll buy you a Dilly Bar. Location: Clayton Home store in the shopping area.
- 8:30 AM: Berkshire Hathaway company movie
- 9:30 AM to 3:30 PM: Q and A with Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger with a break for lunch.
- 12:00 PM to 5:00 PM: NetJets Display. “Signature Flight Support” on the east side of the Omaha airport. Collect passes to the NetJets display at the NetJets stall in the shopping area. Shuttle busses leave the northwest corner of the CenturyLink Center. On display are a fleet of NetJets aircraft “sure to set your pulse racing. Warren urges, “Come by bus; leave by private jet. Live a little.”
- 12:00 PM to 1:00 PM: Buy-your-own lunch at CenturyLink’s stands.
- 3:30 PM to 3:45 PM: Recess / regrouping
- 3:45 PM to 4:00 PM: “Official business” part of the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholders meeting.
- 5:30 PM to 8:00 PM: Nebraska Furniture Mart BBQ Picnic. The “brown bag” dinner costs just $5. There’s also a vegetarian “brown bag.” Location: 700 S 72nd St, Omaha NE 68114 [map]
Shareholder Events on 04-May-2014, Sunday
- 8:00 AM: Berkshire Hathaway “Invest in Yourself” 5K presented by Brooks. Location: Parking lot across from the Hilton and CenturyLink Center. More information: http://investinyourself5k.com. Warren Buffett will fire the opening shots and distribute medals to the winners.
- 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM: Borsheim’s Shopping Day. Includes brunch. Location: 120 Regency Parkway, Omaha NE 68114 [map].
- 1:15 PM: Warren Buffett begins clerking at Borsheim’s. Ask for the “Crazy Warren” quote on the item of your choice. Warren beckons, “As I get older, my pricing gets ever more ridiculous. Come take advantage of me.”
- 1:00 PM: Games at the Borsheim’s Shopping Day
- Challenge U.S. Olympian Ariel Hsing at ping-pong / table tennis. At 1:00 PM, Bill Gates and Warren Buffet “will try to soften her up.”
- Two-time U.S. chess champion, Patrick Wolff, who will be blindfolded, will take on challengers in groups of six.
- Norman Beck, a remarkable magician from Dallas, will bewilder onlookers.
- Bob Hamman and Sharon Osberg, two of the world’s top bridge experts, will take on challengers at bridge, Warren’s favorite pastime. Warren warns, “Don’t play them for money.”
Throughout the Week: Shareholder Discounts and Shopping
- At Borsheim’s Fine Jewelry, shareholder prices will be available from Monday 28-Apr-2014 through Saturday 10-May-2014. Borsheim’s is usually open 10:00 AM to 8:00 PM on Mondays and Thursday, 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, and 10:00 AM to 5:30 PM on Saturdays. Borsheim’s is located at 120 Regency Parkway, Omaha NE 68114 [map]. Most of the items in Borsheim’s are discounted no less than 30% for Berkshire shareholders.
- At Nebraska Furniture Mart (NFM,) shareholder prices will be available from Monday, April 28th through Saturday, May 10th. Nebraska Furniture Mart is located at 700 S 72nd St, Omaha NE 68114 [map]. NFM is open 10:00 AM to 9:00 PM Monday through Saturday and 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM on Sundays. Shareholder discounts are also available at Nebraska Furniture Mart’s stores in Kansas City and Des Moines (no furniture; just appliances, electronics, and flooring.)
Getting Meeting Credentials
Meeting credentials are required to enter the CenturyLink Center for the Berkshire Hathaway meeting or the adjoining area to hit the stores of the many Berkshire subsidiaries. Meeting credentials are also required to get special shareholder pricing at Borsheims, Nebraska Furniture Mart, and other stores that might offer shareholder discounts.
Berkshire Hathaway meeting credentials are no more than a plastic identification card and an associated lanyard. The identification card is not personalized and does not contain the shareholder’s or attendee’s name.
Here’s how to get your meeting credentials:
- If you are a shareholder, your brokerage will send you the annual shareholders’ packet along with a postcard to request a maximum of four passes for the Berkshire annual meeting. Fill this postcard and drop it in the mail. Berkshire will send you passes and lanyards.
- If you are a shareholder, but do not have time to request the passes, did not receive the passes, or did not receive the shareholder packet from your broker, take proof of your ownership of Berkshire Hathaway stock. Take a statement of your holdings from your broker to the annual meeting at the CenturyLink Center on the Friday afternoon or Saturday morning of the annual meeting to get your meeting credentials.
- Many years ago, Berkshire Hathaway shareholders started auctioning the annual meeting passes on eBay for a premium. To hinder this premium, Berkshire Hathaway started directly selling two passes for $5 on eBay, with free shipping. “We decided to sell them ourselves on EBay at a nominal price to keep people from getting stung. We hope nobody pays more than what we charge which is basically to cover mailing charges,” a Berkshire Hathaway representative had informed Omaha World-Herald. Buyers could provide a mailing address when you checkout or just collect their passes from the CenturyLink Center on the Friday afternoon or Saturday morning of the Berkshire meeting.
- If you are straining at the leash to go to the annual meeting and don’t have passes, just show up early on Saturday morning at the CenturyLink Center. I have seen shareholders in the line obliging to requests for passes from devoted fans of Berkshire; this practice needs to be discouraged.
Recommended Reading: “The Oracle & Omaha, How Warren Buffet and His Hometown Shaped Each Other”
‘The Oracle & Omaha, How Warren Buffet and His Hometown Shaped Each Other’ by Steve Jordon, Omaha World Herald