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Warren Buffett And Berkshire Hathaway Enter The Car Business

Warren Buffett has announced the buyout of Van Tuyl Group, the fifth-largest dealership in the country and the largest privately owned dealership.
Posted at 1:49 PM, Oct 02, 2014

The $67 billion man, Warren Buffett, has joined the car business in a major way, expanding his already remarkably successful Berkshire Hathaway conglomerate to include the Van Tuyl Auto Group.

"It would be on the Fortune 500 all by itself, so when we get this done, we will now own 9 1/2 companies that would be on the Fortune 500 of individual companies. So that leaves us only 490 1/2 to go!"

Buffett made the announcement Thursday morning — the second-richest man in the world boasting his Berkshire conglomerate is now "planes, trains and automobiles." (Video via Georgetown University)

The Van Tuyl Group is the fifth-largest U.S. dealership in the country with 78 dealerships and more than 100 franchises, operating heavily throughout the West and Midwest.

The Van Tuyl Group brought in almost $8 billion in revenue last year, trailing the No. 1 dealership in the country, AutoNation, by about $9 billion — though Buffett quipped that placement is temporary. (Video via YouTube / Showroom Logic)

Buffett did not disclose the parameters of the deal, only saying it's an all-cash buyout.

Fortune, however, did make an educated guess: "[The deal] may be gleaned by referring to AutoNation's total market value, which is about $6 billion, or just over one-third of its 2013 revenue. If Berkshire is paying a like price for Van Tuyl, the money changing hands would approach $3 billion."

The deal still has to be approved by auto regulators, but Buffett says he expects for it to close in the first quarter of next year.

This video includes images from Getty Images.