Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Buffett's Actual Acquisition Criteria ($STP)

Hilarious to compare these with the situation at Suntech:

  • Large purchases (at least $50 million of before-tax earnings), 
  • Demonstrated consistent earning power (future projections are of no interest to us, nor are "turnaround" situations)
  • Businesses earning good returns on equity while employing little or no debt
  • Management in place (we can't supply it), 
  • Simple businesses (if there's lots of technology, we won't understand it), 
  • An offering price (we don't want to waste our time or that of the seller by talking, even preliminarily, about a transaction when price is unknown).
Charlie and I frequently get approached about acquisitions that don't come close to meeting our tests: We've found that if you advertise an interest in buying collies, a lot of people will call hoping to sell you their cocker spaniels. A line from a country song expresses our feeling about new ventures, turnarounds, or auction-like sales: "When the phone don't ring, you'll know it's me."
I'm guessing the phone don't ring at Suntech.

No comments: