Profile: Berkshire Hathaway Inc (BRKa.N)
25 Jul 2016
Berkshire Hathaway Inc., incorporated on June 16, 1998, is a holding company owning subsidiaries engaged in various business activities. The Company conducts insurance businesses 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 segments include GEICO, General Re Corporation (General Re), Berkshire Hathaway Reinsurance Group (BHRG), Berkshire Hathaway Primary Group, Burlington Northern Santa Fe, LLC (BNSF), Berkshire Hathaway Energy, Manufacturing, McLane Company, Service and retailing, and Finance and financial products. Its insurance and reinsurance business activities are conducted through various domestic and foreign-based insurance entities. Its insurance businesses provide insurance and reinsurance of property and casualty risks and also reinsure life, accident and health risks across the world.
The GEICO segment includes its subsidiaries, which are Government Employees Insurance Company, GEICO General Insurance Company, GEICO Indemnity Company, GEICO Casualty Company, GEICO Advantage Insurance Company, GEICO Choice Insurance Company, GEICO Secure Insurance Company, GEICO County Mutual Insurance Company and GEICO Marine Insurance Company. These companies offer private passenger automobile insurance to individuals in approximately 50 states of the United States and the District of Columbia. In addition, GEICO insures motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, recreational vehicles, boats and small commercial fleets and acts as an agent for other insurers who offer homeowners and life insurance to individuals.
General Re Corporation
The General Re segment consists of General Re Corporation (General Re), which is the holding company of General Reinsurance Corporation (GRC), and its subsidiaries and affiliates. General Re's subsidiaries conduct business activities globally in over 50 cities, and provide insurance and reinsurance coverages throughout the world. General Re provides property/casualty insurance and reinsurance, life/health reinsurance and other reinsurance intermediary and risk management services, underwriting management and investment management services. General Re's property/casualty reinsurance business in North America is conducted through GRC. General Re's property/casualty business in North America also includes specialty insurers. General Re's international property/casualty reinsurance business operations are conducted through internationally-based subsidiaries on a direct basis through General Reinsurance AG, as well as other General Re subsidiaries and branches in approximately 20 countries. General Re's North American life/health business operates through two divisions: the individual products division, and the group & specialty division in the United States and Canada. The business segments include life, disability, supplemental health, critical illness and long-term care.
Berkshire Hathaway Reinsurance Group
The BHRG segment includes activities conducted through various subsidiaries, such as National Indemnity Company (NICO) and Columbia Insurance Company. BHRG provides principally excess and quota-share reinsurance to other property and casualty insurers and reinsurers. BHRG also offers life reinsurance and annuity contracts through Berkshire Hathaway Life Insurance Company of Nebraska (BHLN) and financial guaranty insurance through Berkshire Hathaway Assurance Corporation. BHRG underwrites traditional non-catastrophe property and casualty insurance and reinsurance, catastrophe excess-of-loss treaty and facultative reinsurance, and individual primary insurance policies on an excess-of-loss basis.
Berkshire Hathaway Primary Group
The Berkshire Hathaway Primary Group segment is a collection of independently managed insurance operations that provide various insurance coverages to policyholders located principally in the United States. The segment's operations include NICO and certain affiliates (NICO Primary), which underwrite motor vehicle and general liability insurance to commercial enterprises on both an admitted and excess and surplus basis. The Berkshire Hathaway Homestate Companies (BHHC) offer standalone workers compensation, commercial auto and commercial property coverages. MedPro Group (MedPro) offers healthcare liability insurance, claims, patient safety and risk solutions to physicians, surgeons, dentists and other healthcare professionals, as well as hospitals, senior care and other healthcare facilities, all offered through Medical Protective Company and its subsidiaries and affiliates.
U.S. Investment Corporation (USIC) and its subsidiaries are specialty insurers that underwrite commercial, professional and personal lines of insurance on an admitted and excess and surplus basis. Policies are marketed in approximately 50 states and the District of Columbia through wholesale and retail insurance agents. USIC companies underwrite and market over 110 specialty property and casualty insurance products. Applied Underwriters, Inc. (Applied) is a provider of payroll and insurance services to small and mid-sized employers. Applied, through its subsidiaries, markets SolutionOne, a product that bundles workers' compensation and other employment related insurance coverages and business services into a package that removes the burden of administrative and regulatory requirements faced by small to mid-sized employers. Applied also markets EquityComp, which is a workers' compensation only product with a profit sharing component targeted to medium-sized employers. WestGUARD Insurance Company and its subsidiaries (collectively, the Berkshire Hathaway GUARD Insurance Companies) provide commercial property and casualty insurance coverage to small and mid-sized businesses. Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance (BH Specialty) provides primary and excess commercial property, casualty, healthcare professional liability, executive and professional lines, surety and travel insurance.
Burlington Northern Santa Fe, LLC
The BNSF segment operates railroad systems in North America with approximately 32,500 route miles of in over 30 states, and also operates in approximately three Canadian provinces. BNSF owns approximately 23,000 route miles, including easements. It operates over 9,000 route miles of trackage rights that permit BNSF to operate its trains with its crews over other railroads' tracks. The total BNSF Railway system, including single and multiple main tracks, yard tracks and sidings, consists of over 50,000 operated miles of track, all of which are owned by or held under easement by BNSF except for over 10,000 miles operated under trackage rights. BNSF transports a range of products and commodities derived from manufacturing, agricultural and natural resource industries.
Berkshire Hathaway Energy
The Berkshire Hathaway Energy segment offers regulated electric and gas utility, including power generation and distribution activities and real estate brokerage activities. The segment consists of the operations of Berkshire Hathaway Energy Company (BHE). BHE is an energy company with subsidiaries that generate, transmit, store, distribute and supply energy. BHE's businesses are managed as separate operating units. BHE's domestic regulated energy interests comprise four regulated utility companies serving approximately 4.7 million retail customers, over two interstate natural gas pipeline companies with approximately 16,400 miles of pipeline and a design capacity of approximately 7.8 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day, and ownership interests in electricity transmission businesses. BHE's Great Britain electricity distribution subsidiaries serve over 3.9 million electricity end users and its electricity transmission-only business in Alberta, Canada.
The Manufacturing segment offers various products, including industrial, consumer and building products. The segment's businesses are grouped into three categories: industrial products, building products and consumer products. Its industrial products businesses manufacture specialty chemicals, metal cutting tools, and a range of other products primarily for industrial use. The building products group produces flooring products, insulation, roofing and engineered products, building and engineered components, paint and coatings, and bricks and masonry products that are used in building and construction applications. The consumer products group manufactures recreational vehicles, various apparel products, jewelry and custom picture framing products.
The McLane Company segment consists of the operations of McLane Company, Inc. (McLane), which provides wholesale distribution of groceries and non-food items in approximately 50 states of the United States to customers that include convenience stores, discount retailers, wholesale clubs, drug stores, military bases, quick service restaurants and casual dining restaurants. McLane provides wholesale distribution services to Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. (Wal-Mart). Its operations are divided into three business units: grocery distribution, foodservice distribution and beverage distribution. McLane's grocery distribution unit provides products to approximately 47,000 retail locations. McLane's grocery distribution unit operates over 20 facilities in approximately 20 states. McLane's foodservice distribution unit conducts its operations through over 20 facilities in approximately 20 states. The foodservice distribution unit services approximately 21,000 chain restaurants. Through its subsidiaries, McLane also operates several wholesale distributors of distilled spirits, wine and beer. Operations are conducted through over 10 distribution centers in Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee and Colorado. These beverage units, including Empire Distributors, Horizon Wine & Spirits, Delta Wholesale Liquors and Baroness Small Estates, service approximately 23,000 retail locations in the Southeastern United States and Colorado.
Service and retailing
The Company's service businesses provide professional aviation training programs, fractional aircraft ownership programs and wholesale distribution of electronic components. Other service businesses include a range of media related businesses (newspaper, television and information distribution), franchising and servicing a system of quick service restaurants, as well as steel service and logistics businesses.
Finance and financial products
The Company's Finance and financial products activities include an integrated manufactured housing and finance business, leasing of transportation equipment and furniture leasing. Clayton Homes, Inc. (Clayton) is an integrated manufactured housing company, which operates over 40 manufacturing plants in approximately 10 states. UTLX Company operates railcar, crane, intermodal tank container, manufacturing and service businesses under several brand names. Union Tank Car is a designer, builder and full-service lessor of tank cars and other specialized railcars. CORT Business Services Corporation is a provider of rental relocation services, including rental furniture, accessories and related services. BH Finance LLC invests in fixed-income and equity instruments.
The Company competes with Union Pacific Railroad Company, Infineum International Ltd., Chevron Oronite Company, Afton Chemical Corporation, Nalco Energy Services, Baker Hughes Inc., Schlumberger Ltd., Halliburton Company, and Sandvik and Kennametal, Inc.
Berkshire Hathaway Inc
3555 Farnam St
OMAHA NE 68131-3311
Company Web Links
- BRIEF-Berkshire CEO Buffett says companies should not feel obligated to provide earnings guidance - CNBC
- BRIEF-Great Expectations Realty to join Berkshire Hathaway Homeservices Real Estate Brokerage network
- BRIEF-Berkshire Hathaway Specialty Insurance expands executive & professional lines for financial institutions in Canada
- Fitch Affirms Berkshire Hathaway Inc.'s IDR at 'AA-'
- Berkshire unit to insure representations in corporate mergers