Investment expert Warren Buffett will try to woo Lunar New Year audiences on the mainland, not with advice on stocks but with his musical talent, state media reported yesterday.
The multibillionaire has sent China Central Television a 'specially produced video' in which he sings and plays guitar in a message to mainlanders that may be included in the online version of the broadcaster's Spring Festival Gala, Xinhua reported.
It cited Wang Pingjiu, one of the CCTV executives behind the annual extravaganza, as listing the Berkshire Hathaway chief executive as a surprise addition to the list of celebrity performances for the show.
The Beijing Times quoted Wang as saying the station had invited Buffett to make his contribution.
'Everyone knows Buffett is an investment god,' Wang said. 'Actually, he is not bad at singing as well. He specially recorded a video singing and playing guitar, and it will be broadcast in the gala.'
The Beijing Evening News said one of Buffett's two sons also appears in the video, but the paper said CCTV executives had yet to make a final decision on whether it would be included in the performance.
Buffett, most familiar to mainlanders through his investment in Shenzhen-based carmaker BYD, is no stranger to musical performances. He is a keen ukulele player, and several video clips have been posted online of him performing solo and as part of a group.
Although Buffett's musical preferences appear to lean heavily towards American folk and country, he has also shown he has more diverse tastes.
In March 2010, Buffett stunned TV audiences in the US when he appeared in a commercial for Geico car insurance - a Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary - singing and dressed as Guns N'Roses frontman Axl Rose.
Buffett was less than six months away from his 80th birthday at the time.
Neither BYD nor Berkshire Hathaway could be reached for comment.