Everyone’s talking about the massive deal Warren Buffett did buying Heinz ketchup for $28 billion in cash, $72.50 a share.Thing is, Buffett’s not doing this alone. Berkshire Hathaway will own 50% of Heinz, and another company, 3G Investments will own the the rest.
3G, a buy-out firm, is owned by the richest man in Brazil (and the 37th richest man in the world), Jorge Lemann, and in the last few years Lemann has done some big deals with big names.
In 2008 Lemann bought a 10% stake in Anheuser-Busch InBev. with his two billionaire partners in 3G, Carlos Alberto Sicupira and Marcel Herrmann Telles. That’s when the world really started paying attention to this former Brazilian national tennis star’s aggressive management style. He seriously cut costs and employee perks like free beer.
In 2010 he did another big deal with an American company. Using 3G Capital, his American investment firm, Lemann, his partners, and fellow Brazilian billionaire Eike Batista, managed a leveraged buy-out of Burger King (you can thank Lemann for getting rid of that creepy Burger King king, he fired the ad firm that came up with it).
It was a hugely successful acquisition and in 2 years they sold 29% of the company to hedge fund manager Bill Ackman’s UK investment vehicle, Justice Holdings.
It was Justice that took Burger King public again last year (from FT):
“When I learnt that Burger King was interested in a possible transaction with Justice, I brought the opportunity to my Justice founding partners to consider,” Mr Ackman said. “They liked what I saw, a 58-year-old global brand, and a simple, predictable, free cash flow growth franchise in the process of transformation into a pure brand royalty business.”
Lemann became the richest man in Brazil when he overtook Eike Batista last year.