Buffett embraces Amazon as Berkshire gains stake

Always on the lookout for a good deal, Buffett over the years has scooped up a diverse array of companies like the metal components maker Precision Castparts; wholesale supply chain firm McLane Company; underwear maker Fruit of the Loom; carpet manufacturer Shaw Industries; Duracell batteries and the Dairy Queen chain of fast food restaurants.

Warren Buffett bought a majority of the Borsheim's stock in the '80s and it paid off.

Investing in Amazon, whose shares are approaching $2,000 apiece, might seem at odds with Buffett's usual approach of buying stakes in profitable companies that are undervalued by the market.

Warren Buffett, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway Inc, at the company annual meeting weekend in Omaha, Nebraska U.S. May 6, 2018.

Buffett, whose 54-year investment career has made him one of the richest men in the world, has previously hailed Amazon founder Jeff Bezos and last year Berkshire announced a joint healthcare venture with Amazon and JPMorgan Chase.

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Buffett, 88, and long-time business partner, Charles Munger, 95, have praised the pair, with Munger saying they give Berkshire "younger eyes". Buffett's assistant didn't immediately respond to a message seeking comment.

Buffet further added, "Yeah, I've been a fan, and I've been an idiot for not buying" [Amazon shares.] "But I want you to know it's no personality changes taking place".

The event, second of its kind following its inauguration a year ago, came as US multinational conglomerate Berkshire Hathaway will be holding its annual shareholders' meeting Saturday.

One exception was IBM Corp. In last year's fourth quarter, Berkshire took a $3-billion writedown on Kraft. His US$10 billion investment in the computer giant in 2011 was a curiosity for Berkshire, and it didn't end well. Knowing this, a headline that Berkshire Hathaway was buying shares in Amazon would understandably generate interest in the markets.

  • Darren Santiago