JP Morgan should perhaps be named as a leading venture capitalist of the latter half of the nineteenth century. The House of Morgan financed Thomas Edison's lightbulb, the founding of General Electric, and the Niagara Falls hydroelectric project (using Nicola Tesla's alternating current technology and Westinghouse equipment). He also was a central figure in many railroads and in some of the trusts of that era.
Warren Buffett is often mentioned as a well known investor or financier, but few would label him a venture capitalist. He prefers to avoid new technologies and instead favors well established businesses, especially when they are undervalued. He is a value investor.
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