Buffett's firm relying less on insurance units

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Associated Press

Posted on August 31, 2012 at 7:00 AM

Updated Friday, Aug 31 at 7:01 AM

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Warren Buffett's 82nd birthday has given Berkshire Hathaway shareholders reason to celebrate another year of his leadership, but it also served to remind investors that they need to think about who will run the evolving company after Buffett is gone.

The more than 80 businesses that Buffett has assembled at Berkshire are mostly humming along, posting a profit of more than $3 billion in the most-recent quarter.

But Buffett's advancing age, coupled with his radiation treatment for prostate cancer this summer, keeps succession on the minds of many Berkshire investors.

And Berkshire continues to evolve with each new acquisition. The Omaha-based company now relies less on the insurance companies and investments it has long been known for and more on its railroad, utility and manufacturing companies.

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