Posts Tagged ‘Berkshire’

SG50/ BRK50: Buffett’s 50th anniversary party

In Uncategorized on 01/05/2015 at 2:17 pm

(Update on 2 May at 5.30pm: Another view

No big do like SG50, but then he doesn’t have a GE to fight.

Berkshire Hathaway Meeting On Saturday, more than 40,000 Berkshire Hathaway shareholders will descend on Omaha for the annual meeting of the company, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary. The gathering is known as Woodstock for Capitalists. Warren E. Buffett, Berkshire’s chairman and chief executive, and Charles T. Munger, its vice chairman, take questions for more than six hours, and their answers often make news.

Likely hot topics include the company’s recent investment in Kraft, its stakes in IBM and Coca-Cola, the debate around companies’ buying back their own shares and, a perennial favorite, succession planning.

SG50 versus BRK50

In Financial competency on 24/02/2015 at 4:32 pm

Berkshire Hathaway celebrates 50 years under Mr Buffett’s control this year

If you had $1000 in BKR in 1965, you’d be worth US$11m ++

PAP got so good meh?

A little humility pls PAP. Especially as Mr Buffett pays himself “peanuts” by yr standards.

Buffett Wealth Chart Regular

One share, one vote; one person one vote

In Corporate governance on 10/10/2011 at 2:44 pm

As Parly is opening later today and what with most MPs elected via GRCs where the principle of using one’s vote to hold an MP accountable is badly diluted, I tot I should blog on shareholder democracy and its relationship to political democracy.

Shares without votes are not the conventional wisdom and make investors and corporate governance activists unhappy. Manchester United’s planned initial public offering in Singapore, where new shareholders may be offered a package of instruments that will entrench the Glazer family’s control, has attracted much criticism*. Many US companies break the one-share-one-vote principle (despite the US being called the home of shareholder democracy). Ford, Berkshire Hathaway, News Corporation, Google and LinkedIn,  all have two classes of shares. Manchester United has just thought-up an alternative by “stapling” nonvoting preference shares to regular voting ones. Bit like GRCs.

Juz like MPs in GRCs, reduced voting power are a problem if managers (in politics think government, ministers or MPS) do stupid things or misbehave, or if takeovers arise. Two examples:

— News Corporation, where Rupert Murdoch cannot be removed or checked despite poor governance.

— Playboy, where Hugh Hefner, the founder of Playboy, who used his control of voting shares to take the company private in 2010 for less than the owner of rival Penthouse said it would offer.

If shareholders have faith in management, then the power to vote is irrelevant. Berkshire Hathaway’s class A and B shares trade on par. Shareholders there don’t care if they don’t have the vote. Likewise in S’pore politics once. In the late 1960s, and in 1970s, the people so trusted the PAP that they were were happy to have a one party state. 

*Much unfair as investors are free to demand big discounts for getting non-voting preference shares that don’t pay fixed dividends and are not cumulative, making them like common shares without voting rights. No one is forcing the shares onto investors.


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