Warren Buffett and Berkshire Hathaway have expanded their already-massive holding of Apple stock, and in a recent interview with CNBC, Buffett once again expressed his admiration for Apple, its CEO Tim Cook, and the iPhone’s loyal user base.
According to Buffett, Cook has led Apple in an “extraordinary way” and is one of the “classiest CEOs.” He also explained why he believes Apple has such a strong brand loyalty from its users, saying that people wouldn’t give up their iPhone even for $10,000.
“If you’re an Apple user and somebody offers you $10,000, but the only proviso is they’ll take away your iPhone, and you’ll never be able to buy another, you’re not going to take it. If they tell you if you buy another Ford car, they’ll give you $10,000 not to do that, you’ll take the $10,000, and you’ll buy a Chevy instead. It’s an incredibly valuable utility. That doesn’t mean it can’t be misused by kids, and Tim Cook cares about that. Everything can be misused. But I think Tim Cook cares about that. I think that Tim Cook is one of the classiest CEOs. He understands the business, and he has a product, which Steve Jobs basically invented, but Tim Cook has managed that company in an extraordinary way.”
Buffett went on to explain that Berkshire Hathaway’s ownership of Apple stock comes down to Apple being a “wonderful business” for both users and investors.
“How the hell could we develop a business like that? And so, we own a lot of it,” he said. “And our ownership goes up a little bit every year because they buy back their stock. And Tim does not issue it, he buys it. And we love it.”
He indicated that the company has no plans to sell any of its Apple stock and that a previous decision to sell some shares for tax purposes turned out to be a “dumb decision.”