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Berkshire Hathaway Inc. Message Board

  • rrb1981 rrb1981 Apr 12, 2002 7:54 PM Flag

    Lots of goodies getting cheap

    While I consider myself a staunch Buffett disciple, I am willing to venture off the path a bit into a few fields like cable and media( not really tech companies). I recently added AOL to my watch list. While I don't own any yet and may never buy any, I will certainly start doing more research if AOL drops into the 15 dollar area. It is a debt heavy company but between internet, cable, magazines and actual content they are a pretty diversified company. Sure, Time Warner holders got rooked but AOL was very savvy to purchase a cash generator with overpriced stock. I really don't care about the huge write-downs, what I care about is their ability to generate enough cash to service debt and repurchase shares. ANother I am eyeing is Williams. Its a energy behemoth and when the WCG cloud clears I think they will really rise. They have taken several huge steps to clean hte balance sheet, selling pipeline assets to Berkshire, selling pipelines to their Master Limited Partnership (WEG)which will allow them to continue to control the pipeline and reap some profit off of it as well as the cash they made from selling it. They also rid themselves of capex on these systems. Qwest and Broadwing are two telecom companies that I am monitoring and studying closely. I'm currently sitting on a wad of cash and am waiting to liquidate several workouts. Adelphia is another that I am watching to see if their is a possible chance to profit from the shady dealings and the possible forced dispositions of cable lines. Tyco and GE are also being added to my list as is MA Bell. Despite the reverse split and the spin-off of AT&T Broadband I think that some value may be hidden in the "stub" that remains. They still have an investment in TWE which could fetch up to 10 Billion(although I don't know if this goes with AT&T Broadband). AT&T has been slashing debt and when the merger goes through(if it does) AT&T will lose another load of debt.

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    • I'd add Liberty Media (L) to your list of goodies that are getting cheap. L owns a chunk of AOL and has substantial overseas cable holdings which has depressed the stock. Over the past 2 years John Malone has stumbled some, but I think this shrewd operator's long-term record is more of an indication of what he can do. There are a lot more opportunities for him to buy something cheap in cable land.

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