Profile: Berkshire Hathaway is an American multinational conglomerate holding company headquartered in Omaha, Nebraska, United States.
Berkshire Hathaway is a diversified holding company whose subsidiaries engage in insurance, freight rail transportation, energy generation and distribution, manufacturing, and retailing.
The company wholly owns GEICO, Duracell, Dairy Queen, BNSF, Lubrizol, Fruit of the Loom, Helzberg Diamonds, Long & Foster, Flight Safety International, Pampered Chef, Forest River, and NetJets.
Berkshire also owns 38.6% of Pilot Flying J and significant minority holdings in public companies Kraft Heinz Company (26.7%), American Express (18.8%), The Coca-Cola Company (9.32%), Bank of America (11.9%), and Apple (6.3%).
Insurance generates the most revenue, but manufacturing generates the most earnings before taxes. As of 2020, Berkshire Hathaway had a market capitalization of $521.57 billion, making it one of the largest publicly traded companies worldwide.
Top Executives: One of the world’s most successful investors, Warren Buffett is Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Berkshire, as well as at a number of Berkshire Hathaway’s subsidiaries. After his investment group took control of Berkshire Hathaway in 1965, Buffett built it into one of the world’s biggest and best performing companies.
Warren Buffett owns a total of 10,188 Berkshire Hathaway class B shares, representing less than 0.01% of the company’s total shares outstanding. Mr. Buffett also owns an additional 15% of Berkshire Hathaway based on his holding of 248,734 class A shares.
Vanguard Group owns 145.9 million class B shares of Berkshire Hathaway, representing 6.0% of total shares outstanding.
BlackRock owns 109.9 million class B shares of Berkshire Hathaway, representing 4.5% of total shares outstanding.
Sales: Berkshire posted total revenue of $245.5 billion in its 2020 fiscal year, which ended December 31, 2020. Total revenue fell 3.6% during the year amid the adverse economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Net earnings fell 47.1% compared to 2019, for total net earnings of $43.3 billion in 2020. Among the biggest winners in Berkshire’s vast investment portfolio was its 5.4% stake in Apple, whose shares have been among the top market winners over the past year.
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