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Updated January 8th, 2024 at 15:33 IST

Berkshire Hathaway resolves valuation dispute with Pilot, avoiding billion-dollar trial

The settlement agreement, announced on Sunday, January 7, 2024, averts a billion-dollar trial between Berkshire Hathaway and the Haslam family.

Business Desk
Berkshire Hathaway resolves valuation dispute with Pilot
Berkshire Hathaway resolves valuation dispute with Pilot | Image:Warren Buffet
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Berkshire Hathaway-Pilot lawsuit: Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway and Pilot have officially settled the valuation dispute in a Delaware lawsuit, bringing an end to the legal conflict over the assessment of billionaire Jimmy Haslam's truck stop chain.

Agreement reached ahead of scheduled trial

The settlement agreement, announced on Sunday, January 7, 2024, averts a billion-dollar trial between Berkshire Hathaway and the Haslam family, which was set to begin on Monday in Delaware's Court of Chancery. The trial aimed to determine the value of the Haslam family's remaining 20 per cent stake in Pilot Travel Centers.

Warren Buffet, Jimmy Haslam

Details of settlement remain confidential

While the companies have confirmed the full settlement of the Delaware litigation, they have not disclosed specific details regarding the terms of the agreement, leaving the resolution shrouded in confidentiality.

Background of dispute and legal proceedings

The dispute stemmed from accusations on both sides regarding accounting maneuvers impacting Pilot's earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT). The Haslams alleged that Berkshire changed its accounting to diminish potential obligations, while Berkshire countersued, accusing Jimmy Haslam of attempting to manipulate earnings.

Trial cancellation and significance

The billion-dollar trial, initially scheduled for January 8 and 9, 2024, was abruptly canceled two days before its commencement. The cancellation holds significant implications for the valuation of the Haslam family's 20 per cent stake in Pilot Travel Centers, the largest US truck stop chain.

Potential witnesses and key figures

The trial, expected to feature testimony from Warren Buffett's designated successor, Greg Abel, faced uncertainties after the recent passing of Berkshire's vice chairman, Charlie Munger. Abel, identified as Buffett's eventual successor, played a pivotal role in the legal proceedings.

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Published January 8th, 2024 at 09:25 IST

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