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Buffett Biographer Alice Schroeder on the Most Likely Buffett Successor

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Last night, Warren Buffett announced the surprise resignation of David Sokol, Berkshire Hathaway's (NYSE: BRK-A  ) (NYSE: BRK-B  ) go-to turnaround wizard and a front-runner to succeed Buffett as CEO. 

In the wake of this bombshell, we asked Buffett biographer Alice Schroeder about the news and her thoughts on who will succeed Buffett as CEO of Berkshire Hathaway. She responded:

Buffett came out about a week ago and said that the Board would support Ajit Jain if he wanted the job. That was unprecedented. Buffett has never thrown that much support behind any candidate before. Among other things, his son Howie is on the board and this means the Buffett family supports Ajit as the successor. In light of the timing, I think he knew the Sokol news was coming and was trying to get ahead of it. At this point, it's fair to say that Ajit is the front-runner. That's my take, anyway.

For more of Alice's thoughts on all things Buffett:

Berkshire Hathaway is a Motley Fool Inside Value and Motley Fool Stock Advisor recommendation. The Fool owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

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  • Report this Comment On March 31, 2011, at 11:46 AM, rrockw wrote:

    Howie was never even considered to be the successor as CEO. As has been said many, many times Howard is only on the board to make sure the Berkshire "culture" continues. Here are Howard's own words on the matter:

    "“My dad has said to me what he would expect, and I think I can do it,” Howard Buffett said. “My job is to make sure Berkshire doesn’t change. And that’s about all he’s said to me.”

    Remember he is taking over the Chairman role - not the CEO role.

  • Report this Comment On March 31, 2011, at 12:13 PM, FoolmeorU wrote:

    Berkshire Hathaway is like a rotten egg, the shell is now broken. Skole could even get his own story straight. First he said he waanted to spend time with the family and concentrate at the phalantropic work. Now he says he wants to start his own investment firm with the same model of Berkshire Hathaway. I'm wondering how many of the executives at BH including Buffett himself have been doing the same thing. How many of them have actually bought LZ because the take over was announced. And the prior history?

    Buffett is favored in dividend-paid stocks whereas his BRK.A is a well over $100K stock and does not even pay a single penny.

    Something smells very stink within this company.

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