- Warren Buffett’s BerkshireHathaway just closed its first major takeover since 2016 byacquiring Dominion Energy’s natural gas transmission andstorage business.
- Berkshire had $137 billion to deploy for its next deal,and while the buyout cost billions, it’s nowhere near Buffett’sbiggest purchase.
- Here are the 10 biggest deals in Berkshire Hathaway’shistory, from Precision Castparts to Duracell.
- Visit the Business Insider homepage for morestories.
Warren Buffett just closed his first major takeover since 2016,but it’s nowhere near the size of his biggest-ever deal.
Berkshire Hathaway inked the $10 billion acquisition of Dominion Energy’snatural gas transmission and storage business in early July,adding to its $100 billion energy portfolio. The move followsspeculation as to whether Buffett would reuse hisfinancial-crisis playbook and make a major deal during thecoronavirus recession.
“We are very proud to be adding such a great portfolio of naturalgas assets to our already strong energy business,” Buffett saidin a press release.
The holding company had been sitting on a $137 billion cash pile,waiting to find a takeover target as valuations tanked oncoronavirus concerns. Some companies approached Berkshire forfinancial aid earlier in the pandemic, but Buffett said theiraccess to Federal Reserve-backed loans erased the chance of a near-term buyout.
“The companies we were getting calls from, after the Fed acted, anumber of them were able to get money in the public marketfrankly at terms we wouldn’t have given,” the CEO said in May.
Here are Berkshire Hathaway’s 10 biggest acquisitions, inascending order by dollar value.
Read more:10 big moneymanagers shared with us their favorite hidden gems in the market,and the contrarian trades they’re making amid thepandemic
10. Marmon Holdings
Price: $4.5 billion
Founded by current Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker, Berkshire took overthis holding company at the start of 2008.
Price: $4.7 billion
Berkshire’s acquisition of this battery giant arrived in 2014after Proctor & Gamble sought to spin off the business.Buffett’s firm bought Duracell entirely with P&G stock, andthe company’s transfer to Berkshire wasn’t completed until early2016.
8. NV Energy
Price: $5.6 billion
Berkshire’s energy-focused subsidiary bought this Las Vegas-basedutility company in early 2013.
Price: $9.4 billion
The same subsidiary, now known as Berkshire Hathaway Energy,bought this electric power distributor in 2005.
Price: $9.7 billion
Purchased by Berkshire in 2011, this chemical company wasinvestigated by French authorities when a devastating 2019 firesaw thousands of tons of chemical products go up in smoke.
5. Dominion Energy
Price: $10 billion
After straying away from major acquisitions for four years,Berkshire took over Dominion’s natural gas transmission andstorage business in July 2020. The deal involves Berkshiregaining complete ownership of Dominion Energy Transmission,Questar Pipeline, and Carolina Gas Transmission.
4. General Reinsurance
Price: $22 billion
One of Berkshire’s older multibillion-dollar deals, Buffett tookover General Reinsurance in 1998 before combining it with CologneRe and marketing the two as Gen Re.
3. Kraft Heinz
Price: $28 billion
Berkshire and 3G Capital took over this ketchup maker in 2013before merging it with food titan Kraft two years later.
2. Burlington Northern Santa Fe
Price: $34 billion
Berkshire Hathaway took a controlling stake in this railwaycompany in late 2009. Though the purchase totaled $34 billion,the assumption of $10 billion in company debt makes theBurlington Northern Santa Fe takeover Berkshire’s largest inhistory.
1. Precision Castparts
Price: $37 billion
While the aforementioned railway deal may be largest whenaccounting for debt, Berkshire’s 2016 purchase of this industrialgoods firm is the largest acquisition made by Buffett’s holdingcompany.
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