Warren Buffett’s grandson is trying to create the Berkshire Hathaway of sustainable investments.
In a New York Times profile published Friday, Howard Buffett outlined his plans for i(x) Investments, his new investment fund that will look to replicate some of the strategies employed by his billionaire grandfather’s Berkshire Hathaway conglomerate, but with an eye towards more energy- and environmentally-friendly investments.
Buffett is currently a lecturer in international and public affairs at Columbia.
According to the Times profile, Buffett and his i(x) co-founder Trevor Neilson plan to employ a “permanently capitalised” structure similar to Berkshire Hathaway, meaning the company will own stakes in some companies, outright own others, but allow these entities to operate independently under its umbrella.
The Times notes, however, the Buffett and Neilson have an explicit aim of avoiding controversies like the recent flare-up between the elder Buffett’s right-hand man Charlie Munger and hedge fund manager Bill Ackman.
Ackman said Berkshire’s investment in Coca-Cola is damaging society, comments that followed Munger’s declaration that Valeant Pharmaceuticals’ controversial pricing strategy is “deeply immoral.” Valeant is Ackman’s largest holding.
But aside from the inherited family name, Howard Buffett doesn’t expect his grandfather to be involved in his venture, with Buffett telling Neilson, “Don’t expect we’re going to be calling Warren up on the phone and getting input on this.”
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