Warren Buffett protégé Tracy Britt Cool leaving to create her own Berkshire Hathaway for smaller companies

How Warren Buffett hand-selected Pampered Chef CEO as his protégé

Pampered Chef CEO Tracy Britt Cool discusses her business relationship with Berkshire Hathaway CEO Warren Buffett — and how she eventually became his protégé — ahead of the company’s annual shareholder meeting in Omaha, Nebraska.

Berkshire Hathaway’s executive Tracy Britt Cool announced her departure from the investment firm to create her own company using her mentor Warren Buffett’s business model.

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Cool, who initially joined Buffett’s firm in 2009 as his financial assistant, said she’s starting her own firm that will acquire companies “too small for Berkshire,” The Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.

“I want to build a long-term platform and a long-term vehicle to acquire and build businesses,” Cool said in an interview with the WSJ. “There are companies that I think there’s a lot of value in helping them get to the next level, but they’re too small for Berkshire.”

Buffett has always held the Harvard Business School graduate in high regard. "Anything I’ve assigned her she’s done a first-class job on,” he told the WSJ.

After graduating from Harvard, Cool joined Berkshire Hathaway because she told the billionaire investment mogul that she would work “a day, a week, a month” and “do anything.” Within a few years, she became Buffett’s right-hand woman by the age of 25.

Five years later, Cool was named CEO of Pampered Chef, a Berkshire subsidiary.


“The toughest part is finding things to buy,” Buffett said. “She’s got an easier job than I’ve got,” he added, because Cool will be focusing her attention on smaller companies.

Cool played an important role in expanding the number of women at Berkshire, paving the way for Susan Decker, Charlotte Guyman and Meryl Witmer, who currently sit on its board of directors.

“It’s the year of the woman, and I think we are doing a great job at a lot of different companies and I think Berkshire is no different,” she told Fox Business’ Liz Claman last year.

Meanwhile, the WSJ reported that Cool will also be resigning from the board of Kraft Heinz in the first quarter of 2020, but she is expected to remain on Blue Apron’s board.


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