This week, investing guru Warren Buffett will have lunch with a 28-year-old Chinese tech entrepreneur over a topic he despises: cryptocurrency. The 88-year-old billionaire doesn’t have a choice to say no, though, because his young guest, crypto entrepreneur Justin Sun, rightfully booked his calendar last month when he won the annual auction for Buffett’s “Power Lunch” for a record $4.6 million.
This year, Sun will also break the Power Lunch’s longstanding tradition by moving the lunch venue from New York to San Francisco to give Buffett an immersive experience in the Bay Area’s buzzing crypto community.
Per the charity lunch’s rule, Sun is allowed to bring up to seven guests to join him and Buffett. As of this weekend, he had confirmed three attendants: Jeremy Allaire, CEO of Circle, a Boston-based crypto trading and fundraising platform; Yoni Assia, CEO of eToro, an Israel- and London-based crypto brokerage firm; and Helen Hai, head of Binance Charity Foundation, a blockchain-powered donation portal initiated by Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume.
Sun has also invited Litecoin founder Charlie Lee, Livio Weng of Singapore-based crypto exchange Huobi and Binance founder Changpeng Zhao, who’s known as “CZ” in the tech community.
CZ has turned down Sun’s invitation and recommended asking Anthony Pompliano, co-founder of Morgan Creek Digital, an investment fund focusing on digital assets. Lee and Weng have yet to respond.
For the only remaining seat, Sun has apparently extended an invitation to President Donald Trump. Responding to a Trump tweet criticizing Bitcoin earlier this month, Sun tweeted, “Mr. President, you are misled by fake news. Bitcoin and blockchain happen to be the best chance for the U.S.! I’d love to invite you to have lunch with crypto leaders along with Warren Buffett on July 25. I guarantee you [that] after this lunch, nobody will know crypto more than you!”
Sun is the founder of cryptocurrency Tron and San Francisco-based file-sharing company BitTorrent. He has said he’s a big fan of Buffett and would like to take the lunch opportunity to update him on the latest developments in blockchain and cryptocurrencies.
Other topics over the meal may include policy issues affecting the crypto community and even gauging Buffett’s interest in investing in Bitcoin.
“Crypto is now a major global policy issue and there is a great deal for Mr. Buffett to understand and for us to learn from him as well,” Circle CEO Allaire tweeted last week in response to Sun’s lunch invitation.
“[Lunch with Buffett is] a big step for bridging between the traditional finance world and the new one,” tweeted eToro’s Assia. “I believe there is huge potential for social impact that can be done via crypto and would love to have Warren Buffett engaged with us!”
Update: After this piece went live, Sun announced that the lunch with Buffett would be postponed due to a condition of his health.