About Smilemakers, Inc.
Berkshire Hathaway is the holding company where Warren Buffett, one of the world's richest men, makes his money and spreads his risk. The company invests in a variety of industries. The most important of these are insurance businesses conducted on both a primary basis and a reinsurance basis, a freight rail transportation business and a group of utility and energy generation and distribution businesses.. Its core insurance subsidiaries include GEICO, National Indemnity, and reinsurance giant General Re. The company's other large holdings include Marmon Group, McLane Company, MidAmerican Energy, and Shaw Industries.
Berkshire Hathaway operates as a holding company with a highly decentralized structure without integrated business functions (such as sales, marketing, purchasing, legal, and human resources). Practicing a minimal day-to-day management leadership style, the firm owns a diverse group of companies from a variety of industries, with its core subsidiaries being insurance, reinsurance, freight rail transportation, utilities, and energy generation companies.
The insurance businesses constitute some 65% of total revenue and are conducted through numerous domestic and foreign-based insurance entities. Berkshire's insurance businesses provide insurance and reinsurance of property and casualty and life, accident and health risks worldwide. Its most recognizable holding is GEICO (auto insurance). Sales and service revenues make up around 40% of the insurance business revenue, while about 20% comes from insurance premiums. Nearly 15% of Berkshire Hathaway revenue comes from its railroad, utilities, and energy subsidiaries.
Lesser known to most are the company's investment in industries outside of energy and insurance. Such holdings include a railroad transportation company (Burlington Northern Santa Fe), a carpet manufacturer (Shaw Industries), a wholesale distributor of consumer goods (McLane), a manufacturer of clay bricks (Acme Brick), a battery company (Duracell), and a specialty chemicals producer (Lubrizol).
Berkshire also holds investment stakes in American Express ($18.9 billion), Apple ($73.7 billion), Bank of America ($33.4 billion), Coca-Cola ($22.1 billion), and Wells Fargo ($18.6 billion).
Omaha, Nebraska-headquartered Berkshire Hathaway operates primarily in the US, though it provides insurance (and reinsurance) to clients in the Asia/Pacific, Canada, and Europe regions.
Buffett's famed investment vehicle has enjoyed mostly upward trends in revenue and profits, highlighting the investors' knack for choosing financially successful companies over the long term. It grew revenue from $200 billion in 2015 to almost $255 billion in 2019. Net income expanded from $24 billion in 2015 to a peak of $81 billion in 2019.
In 2019, Berkshire recorded $254.6 billion in revenues across its collection of businesses, up from $247.8 billion in 2018. Huge gains from interest from dividend and other investment income drove increase in total revenues.
Berkshire reported a net income of $81.4 billion in 2019, compared to $4 billion in 2018. The big jump was because of huge gain in investment and derivative incomes.
Berkshire ended 2019 with approximately $64.6 billion in cash and cash equivalents. While operating activities provided $38.7 billion and financing activities also generated $730 million, investing activities used more than $5.6 billion mainly for purchases of treasury bills and securities.
Equity securities represent a significant portion of Berkshire Hathaway's investment portfolio. Strategically, it strives to invest in businesses that possess excellent economics and able and honest management, and it prefers to invest a meaningful amount in each investee. Consequently, equity investments are concentrated in relatively few issuers. In 2019, approximately 67% of the total fair value of equity securities was concentrated in five issuers.
The company often hold its equity investments for long periods and short-term price volatility has occurred in the past and will occur in the future. It also strives to maintain significant levels of shareholder capital and ample liquidity to provide a margin of safety against short-term price volatility.
It also invests in bonds, loans or other interest rate sensitive instruments. The company strategy is to acquire or originate such instruments at prices considered appropriate relative to the perceived credit risk. It also issues debt in the ordinary course of business to fund business operations, business acquisitions and for other general purposes. It also attempts to maintain high credit ratings, in order to minimize the cost of own debt. It infrequently utilize derivative products, such as interest rate swaps, to manage interest rate risks.
Chairman and CEO Warren Buffett, along with associates, slowly accumulated a majority of shares in the Berkshire Hathaway textile company in the early 1960s. To stabilize revenues and reduce financial risks, Buffett diversified the company with a purchase of Indemnity and National Fire & Marine Insurance Company in 1967. Thus began the long, prosperous road towards profitability and dozens of acquisitions. Buffett still owns about 20% of Berkshire Hathaway's shares.
425 Sha Ln
Spartanburg, SC 29307-5546
Phone: 1 (864) 583-2405
Employer Type: Privately Owned
Director: John Toomey
Employees (This Location): 108
Employees (All Locations): 135