- Warren Buffett lost a bet with Chevron CEO Mike Wirth on a college-football game this season.
- The billionaire investor paid up by sending a decades-old $5 bill by FedEx.
Crypto fans hoping to rally the skeptical Warren Buffett to their cause could be waiting a while yet. The billionaire recently lost a wager, but instead of transferring tokens or even wiring money to settle it, he shipped a single $5 bill by FedEx.
Ahead of this year’s college-football season, Buffett made a $5 bet with Chevron CEO Mike Wirth on the outcome of the game between the Nebraska Cornhuskers and the Colorado Buffaloes, the respective teams of Buffett’s home state and Wirth’s alma mater.
Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway owns about 6% of Chevron, a $20 billion stake that ranks among the largest positions in the conglomerate’s stock portfolio. The famed investor discussed his wager with Wirth in an email to Andy Serwer, which the Barron’s editor-at-large shared in a recent story.
“After Nebraska lost, I sent my $5 by Federal Express,” Buffett wrote. “He won fair and square. He had no inside knowledge about Colorado. Fortunately, I had $5 in my wallet that had been untouched for decades.”
“I have $5 in my budget for football in 2024,” Buffett added. “There’s no fool like an old fool.”
As for Wirth, he told Serwer that he was thrilled by the Buffaloes’ resurgence this season under their new coach, Deion Sanders.
“I’m happy to see Coach Prime bringing Colorado football back to the forefront, and equally happy to have Berkshire Hathaway as a shareholder,” he said. “Finding a FedEx package from Warren on my desk is just a little icing on the cake.”
Buffett’s choice of delivery method isn’t too surprising given he’s famous for eschewing technology; he continued using a flip phone for years after becoming Apple’s biggest shareholder. On the other hand, Berkshire is the biggest shareholder of both American Express and Bank of America, so he’s certainly familiar with digital payments.
Most likely, the 93-year-old investor wanted to commemorate the wager by giving Wirth a physical reminder of it. Or he may have just wanted to get rid of some cash — Berkshire had a near-record $147 billion of it at the last count.