Warren Buffett Reveals Berkshire Hathaway’s Decision to Sell Entire Paramount Stake

Paramount

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Warren Buffett, Chairman and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway, disclosed at the company’s annual shareholder meeting that Berkshire Hathaway has divested its entire stake in Paramount.

Buffett took full responsibility for the decision, stating, “I was 100% responsible for the Paramount decision. It was 100% my decision, and we’ve sold it all and we lost quite a bit of money.”

As of the end of 2023, Berkshire Hathaway owned 63.3 million shares of Paramount, following a reduction of approximately one-third of the position in the fourth quarter of the previous year.

Berkshire Hathaway initially acquired a nonvoting stake in Paramount’s class B shares in the first quarter of 2022. However, the media company faced significant challenges, including a dividend cut, an earnings miss, and the departure of its CEO. Paramount’s stock experienced a decline of 44% in 2022 and an additional 12% in 2023.

Recently, Sony Pictures and private equity firm Apollo Global Management expressed interest in acquiring Paramount for approximately $26 billion. Discussions have also taken place with David Ellison’s Skydance Media regarding a potential takeover.

Paramount has encountered difficulties amid declining revenue due to the shift away from traditional pay-TV and ongoing losses in its streaming services. The stock has continued its downward trend this year, declining by nearly 13%.

Buffett’s reflection on the unsuccessful investment in Paramount has prompted him to consider the evolving preferences of individuals in their leisure activities. He previously highlighted the saturation of the streaming industry, leading to intense competition for viewer engagement and resources.

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