Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Ketchup billionaire: Warren Buffett, BK owner in Heinz takeover

Tomatoes, vinegar and salt

Ketchup billionaire: Warren Buffett, BK owner in Heinz takeover


Insurance-investments-railroad billionaire Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway and 3G Capital, a New York firm whose past ventures include an attempted Burger King turnaround, have agreed to buy Pittsburgh-based ketchup-maker and condiment giant H.J. Heinz & Co., one of Pennsylvania's iconic companies.

Price: $72.50/share, an alltime high for the stock, vs. recent trading price around $60. Works out to around $23 billion, plus close to $5 billion in debt. Short Heinz statement here, nothing about consolidation, closing or expansion plans yet. Wall St. Journal story here.

Major owners who stand to benefit from the sale include the Blackrock and Vanguard investment funds. Heinz chief executive William R. Johnson controls shares worth around $100 million at the sale price.

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PhillyDeals posts drafts, transcripts and updates of Joseph N. DiStefano's columns and stories about Philly-area business, which he's been writing since 1989.

DiStefano studied economics, history and a little engineering at Penn and taught writing at St. Joseph's. He has written thousands of columns and articles for the Inquirer, Bloomberg and other media, wrote the book Comcasted, and raised six children with his wife, who is a saint.

Reach Joseph N. at JoeD@phillynews.com, distefano251@gmail.com, 215.854.5194 or 302.652.2004.

Reach Joseph N. at JoeD@phillynews.com or 215 854 5194.

Joseph N. DiStefano
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