Warren Buffet Invests In $165 Million Dollars into Domain Industry

According to TheStreet.com, the most famous stock investor on earth, Warren Buffet’s company Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.A) has purchased 3,685,700 shares  of Verisign (VRSN).

At the closing price of Verisign yesterday he investment represents around $165 Million dollars or about the size of the investment Marchex made in the purchase of Yung Ye’s domain name portfolio some 8 years ago.

We told you that more money is going to come into the domain industry than ever before, here is another $165 Million dollar example.



  1. says

    coincidentally I received a survey from Verisign yesterday with questions entirely focused on “domaining”, the reward was a 25 USD amazon gift card, I guess my point is that they are willing to pay for Industry ‘ information

  2. says

    fantastic news Mike, and yes only the beginning. Still time to act instead of wish you did later IMO but the WOO is here now and will close in time.

    As Rick S. said yesterday you can expect to hear the ghost of future domain investors blaming those of us who are investing in GTLD era now for getting in first. SAD

  3. DomainInvestor says

    wouldn’t jump the gun here. 1st, Buffet didn’t actually make the decision, it was one of the portfolio managers within Berkshire Hathaway investments. These managers don’t need approval from him to make trades. 2nd, the amount investment is very small and doesn’t amount to much of total Bershires value. Buffet probably doesn’t even know what a domain is :-)

  4. says


    Its a glass half empty half full argument.

    I have no idea of what the procedure is for evaluating an investment for Berkshire Hathaway or who is involved or not involved in that determination .

    We can say that this is the 1st time this company has invested into Verisign and we can also say that since Verisign’s only business is that of a domain name registry someone over there is quite familiar with the business of Verisign and what a domain name is

  5. BrianWick says

    I do not think he has a sleeze ObamaAngle on the Heinz one – time for him to get out – just the Pope – at a certain age maybe the brain becomes Ketchup ?

  6. says

    Mike Verisign is just not in the domain business.

    Authentication Partner Programs
    Authentic Document IDs for BREW®
    CableLabs Device Certificates
    Code Signing
    Code Signing Certificates for Adobe® AIR™
    Code Signing Certificates for Microsoft® Authenticode®
    Code Signing Certificates for Microsoft® Office/VBA
    Code Signing Certificates for Windows® Phone
    Code Signing Certificates for Windows® Phone Private Enterprise
    Code Signing for Android
    Code Signing Partner Programs
    Device Certificate Services
    Digital IDs for Secure Email
    DOD Interoperability
    Extended Validation Code Signing
    Financial SSL Certificates
    Government Authentication
    HSPD-12 Solution
    Identity and Authentication Services
    Managed PKI for SSL Intranet Certificates
    Managed PKI for SSL Services

    Managed PKI Service
    National PKI Solutions
    Non-Federal Shared Service Provider PKI
    Processing Center PKI
    Public Key Infrastructure (PKI) Solutions
    Secure Site
    Secure Site Pro
    Secure Site Pro with EV
    Secure Site with EV
    SSL Certificates
    SSL for Small Businesses
    SSL for the Enterprise
    SSL Partner Programs
    Symantec Certificate Intelligence Center
    Symantec™ Validation and ID Protection Service (VIP)
    Two-Factor Authentication
    Symantec™ Safe Site
    VIP Credential
    Wireless LAN Certificates
    WiMAX Authentication Service

  7. jose says

    @BrianWick lol. i am guessing that he has hit his top. like the broad markets are close to make major tops. signs of time.

  8. says

    Buffet loves “durable competitive advantages” (or “wide moats” as he puts it). And Verisign has a big one. .COM locked up in perpetuity with a baked in 7% per price increase? In today’s environment of ZIRP forever, this is better than the traditional “risk free rate” of T-bills (which most antiquated business textbooks from the 90’s peg at 6%), one could almost make the argument that it’s better than cash.

  9. BrianWick says

    So Mark Jeftovic –
    “.COM locked up in perpetuity with a baked in 7% per price increase”

    I am pretty sure Verisign has just signed a deal with “no registrar hard cost price increases” for several years – likely for antitrusts reasons – albeit if “.com somehow becomes a significant lesser player” during that contract time Verisign has the right to charge “market” value for renewals – how did that all work out for .tv owners ?

    The real reason for the Buffet deal: the Buffet investment in Verisign is no different than the Geeorge Soros divesture of Gold today – the glee club lib shit is not holding in the quick sand they helped create anymore – now it is time to firmly stroke the conservative politicians :)

  10. says


    Verisign had to give up future rate hikes in its new 6 year contract.

    So it doesn’t get to increase the price at all of a .com for the next 6 years (except for exceptional circumstances and agreed to by the Dept of Commerce)

    Of course if Warren was REALLY smart he would have bought the shares at $27 seven months ago

  11. says


    Doh! I completely forgot about that. It makes less sense now to me. As for why he didn’t buy months ago I do know he typically doesn’t try to “time” things, he just does his calculations on intrinsic value and if he can buy for at least a 30% or so “margin of safety” he’ll do it.

    Having said that, it looks less compelling now (especially as you note, after such a strong run up)

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