(photo credit: REUTERS)
American billionaire investor Warren Buffett will be traveling to New York on Thursday, where he is expected to encourage the purchase of some $140 million worth of Israeli government bonds.
In a series of private events that day, Buffett will be meeting with a variety of business executives who have each indicated their intentions to make investments of between $1 million and $5m., Israel Bonds, the underwriting agency for the bonds in the US, reported. The potential investors hail from the US, Canada, Mexico and Brazil, according to the agency, which is also known as the Development Corporation for Israel.
“The purchase of Israel bonds is a sound investment and a deserved endorsement of a remarkable country,” said Buffett, who is the chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., ahead of Thursday's event.
“Israel started from absolute scratch when it was established 69 years ago, and look where it is now," he added. "There is no other country in the world that has gone as far in such a short period. In the process, Israel has become a showcase of what can be done when you unlock an ocean of human potential. I like backing winners and am happy to own the bonds of Israel.”
Buffet's efforts this week follow a previous event held in his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska, in November, during which he raised more than $60m. in new Israel bond investments, a statement from Israel Bonds said. At that event, Buffett stressed that the US and Israel "have a common destiny," praising the country for its "brains, energy and dynamism."
As a longstanding investor in the country, Buffett made the Israeli company Iscar his first overseas acquisition in 2006.
In his personal portfolio, Buffett holds $5m. worth of Israel government bonds, the statement explained. Meanwhile, Berkshire Hathaway's portfolio has included such bonds since the company's acquisition of GUARD Insurance in 2012.
Earlier this year, Israel Bonds exceeded $40b. in worldwide sales since the first bonds were issued in 1951, and surpassed $1.127b. in US sales in 2016 alone, the agency's statement added.
“Israel Bonds is proud to call Warren Buffett a friend," said Israel Maimon, president and CEO of Israel Bonds. "By supporting the Israel Bonds organization through these events and investing directly in Israel bonds himself, Mr. Buffett is helping to ensure that the State of Israel will continue to prosper, and will continue to be a model of innovation and economic growth for decades to come.”