The Strategist

Berkshire Hathaway builds stakes in Japan's top 5 trading companies

01/17/2024 - 10:36

Sumitomo CEO Masayuki Hyodo told Barron's on the fringes of the Davos conference that billionaire Warren Buffett's investment firm Berkshire Hathaway is still adding to its holdings in five of Japan's biggest trading companies: Mitsubishi, Mitsui, Itochu, Marubeni, and Sumitomo.

Fortune Live Media
Fortune Live Media
In August 2020, Berkshire's average ownership in each of the five companies was five percent; by June 2023, that figure had risen to over 8.5 percent.

At that time, Berkshire also said it could further increase stakes at a suitable price, but Buffett promised it would not buy more than 9.9% in any of those five companies before seeking approval from their boards. Hyodo notes that a suitable moment may come soon.

"According to the information I have, there is a build-up of stakes in all five companies, not just Sumitomo," Hiodo said. "His (Buffett's) stake is growing every day".