During the past two weeks, Berkshire Hathaway has added $185 million to its position in DaVita HealthCare Partners (DVA), and now owns 14% of the company. Berkshire’s stake in DVA is currently valued at over $1.4 billion. This investment has apparently been made by Ted Weschler, one of Warren Buffett’s two recently hired portfolio managers. During the previous 10 years, DVA was consistently one of Mr. Weschler’s largest investments in the hedge fund that he managed, Peninsula Capital. DVA is comprised primarily of kidney dialysis centers in the United States. It has also recently been expanding into physician networks and international markets.
Since Berkshire’s steady accumulation of DVA shares is reminiscent of its acquiring a large stake in Burlington Northern Santa Fe prior to its purchase of the entire company, could a friendly acquisition of DVA take place in the near future?