Billionaire Lemann Says He's a Technology `Dinosaur' at Age 78

(Bloomberg) -- Jorge Paulo Lemann, the billionaire co-founder of 3G Capital Inc., said he’s been scrambling to keep up with rapid technological changes.

“I’m a terrified dinosaur” when it comes to technology and disruption, Lemann said Monday at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California. “I’ve been adjusting -- I’m 78.”

The Brazilian dealmaker orchestrated H.J. Heinz’s merger with Kraft Foods Group in 2015 and formed the world’s biggest beer company, Anheuser-Busch InBev in 2008. He said that, more recently, companies like Starbucks Corp. are showing an ability to evolve with the new economy. There are now hundreds of new brands in supermarkets, and customers are more fickle, according to Lemann.

“I’ve been living in this cozy world,” he said. It used to be that industry trends changed only gradually, and management could “just focus on being very efficient and you’ll do OK. And all of a sudden we’re being disrupted.”

Read more about the Brazilian dealmaker who wowed Buffett

When asked if he’d buy a disruptive rival, Lemann said he “hadn’t thought about it,” but he added that he doesn’t plan to let opportunities pass him by.

“I’m scrambling,” Lemann said. “I’m not going to lie down and go away.”

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