The Real Reason Warren Buffett Didn't Stand Up Against Coca-Cola

Buffett may have disapproved of Coca-Cola's controversial executive pay plan, but actions speak louder than words, and he didn't speak up against it. Why did he hold his tongue?

Apr 30, 2014 at 7:30AM

Coca-Cola's (NYSE:KO) recent controversial compensation plan for its executives could cost shareholders billions over the next four years, and Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway (NYSE:BRK-A)(NYSE:BRK-B) is the company's largest shareholder. Buffett himself has expressed his lack of agreement with the plan, but when it came time for a vote, he and Berkshire stayed silent, and abstained.

In the following video segment from the show Where the Money Is, Motley Fool financial analysts Matt Koppenheffer and David Hanson look at Berkshire's relationship with Coca-Cola, and whether or not Buffett is deserving of some criticism for the move. Matt admits that he is disappointed not to see Buffett take a more critical stance. However, Matt understands that because Coca-Cola is one of Berkshire Hathaway's largest holdings, any fight with Coca-Cola indirectly impacts his shareholders at Berkshire.

Warren Buffett just bought nearly 9 million shares of this company
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David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway. Matt Koppenheffer owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway. The Motley Fool recommends Berkshire Hathaway and Coca-Cola. The Motley Fool owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and Coca-Cola and has the following options: long January 2016 $37 calls on Coca-Cola and short January 2016 $37 puts on Coca-Cola. 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.

4 in 5 Americans Are Ignoring Buffett's Warning

Don't be one of them.

Jun 12, 2015 at 5:01PM

Admitting fear is difficult.

So you can imagine how shocked I was to find out Warren Buffett recently told a select number of investors about the cutting-edge technology that's keeping him awake at night.

This past May, The Motley Fool sent 8 of its best stock analysts to Omaha, Nebraska to attend the Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholder meeting. CEO Warren Buffett and Vice Chairman Charlie Munger fielded questions for nearly 6 hours.
The catch was: Attendees weren't allowed to record any of it. No audio. No video. 

Our team of analysts wrote down every single word Buffett and Munger uttered. Over 16,000 words. But only two words stood out to me as I read the detailed transcript of the event: "Real threat."

That's how Buffett responded when asked about this emerging market that is already expected to be worth more than $2 trillion in the U.S. alone. Google has already put some of its best engineers behind the technology powering this trend. 

The amazing thing is, while Buffett may be nervous, the rest of us can invest in this new industry BEFORE the old money realizes what hit them.

KPMG advises we're "on the cusp of revolutionary change" coming much "sooner than you think."

Even one legendary MIT professor had to recant his position that the technology was "beyond the capability of computer science." (He recently confessed to The Wall Street Journal that he's now a believer and amazed "how quickly this technology caught on.")

Yet according to one J.D. Power and Associates survey, only 1 in 5 Americans are even interested in this technology, much less ready to invest in it. Needless to say, you haven't missed your window of opportunity. 

Think about how many amazing technologies you've watched soar to new heights while you kick yourself thinking, "I knew about that technology before everyone was talking about it, but I just sat on my hands." 

Don't let that happen again. This time, it should be your family telling you, "I can't believe you knew about and invested in that technology so early on."

That's why I hope you take just a few minutes to access the exclusive research our team of analysts has put together on this industry and the one stock positioned to capitalize on this major shift.

Click here to learn about this incredible technology before Buffett stops being scared and starts buying!

David Hanson owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway and American Express. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Berkshire Hathaway, Google, and Coca-Cola.We Fools don't 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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