1. What industry will be the next growth driver in the 21st century and what do you see that supports that? Source: Emory’s Goizueta Business School and McCombs School of Business at UT Austin February 2008
Gillette accounts for 70% of razor sales at 80% gross margins and it is the same over time. Men don’t change much. Shaving might be the only creative thing they do, like painting the Sistine Chapel. Snickers has been the #1 candy bar for the past 40 years. If you gave me $1 billion to knock off Snickers, I can’t do it. That’s the test of a good business. You don’t knock off Coke or Gilette. Richard Branson is a marketing genius. He came in with Virgin Cola, we’re not sure what the name means, perhaps it turns you back into one, but he couldn’t knock off Coke. We look for wide moats around great economic castles. Growth is good too, but we prefer strong economics.
2. On Wonderful business. Source: Lecture at the University of Florida Business School October 15th 1998
You can figure what will happen, you can’t figure out when it will happen. You don’t want to focus too much on when but you want to focus on what. If you are right about what, you don’t have to worry about when very much.
3. Charlie, what scientific innovation going on right now that you’re really excited about and what’s one thing that you’re really scared about? Daily Journal Shareholding Meeting Q & A with Charlie Munger 2017
MUNGER: I really am deeply aware of this agricultural revolution and everyone takes it granted. It wasn’t-you know, it isn’t like agricultural productivity increased by 300% a few decades. It was just amazing what happened. And, of course, the world needed it terribly.
We couldn’t have this civilization without the food. And there’s not that much arable land. We have to get more products out of our existing land. And our existing land—the way we’re farming it intensively is degrading. And the reason we produced all that stuff is we pour chemicals and so forth into the land-—fungicides, herbicides, insecticides.