Batteries aren’t exactly a sexy business, but Warren Buffett sees value in them, with his Berkshire Hathaway this week announcing it will acquire Duracell from Procter & Gamble.
“We want Berkshire to be an ever-growing collection of good businesses that we can hold forever,” Buffett told The Wall Street Journal. “Batteries are not a growth business, but we have a lot of other businesses that aren’t growing that do fine.” He said Duracell’s profitability was a key reason for Berkshire making the deal. “Batteries aren’t just commodities, he said. “There are significant differences in performance.”
Berkshire isn’t using cash to buy Duracell. Instead it is giving its entire $4.7 billion stake in P&G back to the company. In exchange, P&G will inject about $1.8 billion in cash into Duracell, the Journal reports, noting that this marks the third time this year Berkshire has made such a transaction. The Journal talks about the tax benefits of the non-cash deal, and notes some concerns about the battery business.