Warren Buffett
Warren Buffett Reuters

Warren Buffett has pegged his 56-year-old son Howard, a corn farmer, as successor to his $245 billion money-making machine Berkshire Hathaway Inc., according to the billionaire in an interview with 60 Minutes, scheduled to air this Sunday.

"I was surprised," said younger Buffett, who was also interviewed by 60 Minutes in the same segment. The younger Buffett was described as a farmer who would rather dig up the ground and drive big machines than sit in the board room.

Warren Buffett told interviewer Leslie Stahl that he believes "Howie," as he is known in the family, would serve as a guardian of Berkshire Hathaway's culture. He wants his son to become a "non-executive chairman" after he dies, an unpaid position.

"You worry that somebody will be in charge of Berkshire that uses it as their own sandbox in some way. That changes the way that decisions are made in reference to the shareholders," Buffett explained to Stahl in Sunday's interview.

"The odds of that happening are very, very, very low, but having Howie there adds one extra layer of protection," he added.

For now, however, Howie plans to keep his day job as a corn farmer and appears to be content to let his healthy 81-year-old father hold on to the reins.

Here's a link to the excerpt of that interview.