Berkshire investment in snowflake

Berkshire famously bought Snowflake at IPO in $2020. About $735 million of stock at $120/share.

Today’s news:

"The company generated a fiscal fourth-quarter net loss of $207 million, or 64 cents a share, compared with a loss of $132 million, or 43 cents a share, in the year-earlier quarter. "

Revenue growth targets reduced.

Stock falls 7% after market close in AH trading.

Entertainingly, Snowflake announced a share buyback!

I wonder what profits will be paying for it?

Does anyone have any other thoughts to add?


I will take 10 million a year.


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Snowflake and Salesforce are two different companies. You posted news about both of them.

My view on Snowflake is that it is a good company with high valuations.


Oh my goodness. Thank you for pointing that out. I am not sure what was going through my brain, I saw the stories side by side in Yahoo finance and thought they were both snowflake.

I will edit my post to look less silly.

but for the record: as dividends20 noted, I had two unrelated stories about salesforce at the end, thinking for some reason it was about snowflake.

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I noticed this, might be of interest. The rate of dilution seems quite high.

reports 320 million shares outstanding

latest results including dilutive options & RSUs etc

reports 363 million shares equivalent outstanding

Indeed the buyback (around 14m shares based on the current price) would seem to be inadequate to offset even a fraction of the new shares in the process of being printed to pay staff.

Can anyone confirm this interpretation?

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This has been discussed over the years. Here’s one thread about it:

Basically, it was known from before the IPO that the diluted share count would hit 360 million. You can think of it as a drawn out one time IPO event.

Regarding 320 million vs 363 million, it’s explained in their press release:

We may have non-GAAP net income attributable to Snowflake Inc. for the first quarter of fiscal 2024. As a result, we are presenting the weighted-average shares used in computing net income per share attributable to Snowflake Inc. common stockholders - diluted in the non-GAAP column of the table above, giving effect to all potentially dilutive securities (stock options, restricted stock units, and employee stock purchase rights under our 2020 Employee Stock Purchase Plan). These potentially dilutive securities would be excluded from the weighted-average shares used in computing net loss per share attributable to Snowflake Inc. common stockholders - diluted if we have non-GAAP net loss attributable to Snowflake Inc.

I hope the above sheds some light on how to think about current and future dilution. The CFO elaborated on the buyback on the earnings call:

We have $5.1 billion in cash on our balance sheet. We’ve had $5 billion since the time we went public. We’ve made a number of strategic acquisition and M&A deals. So, we feel we have more than enough capital in the business to fuel our growth through both the small tuck-in M&As as well as invest in headcount, but you can only add so many people at a time and get them productive in an engineering organization.

And I’m not hearing our engineering leaders claim they need more people. And it’s not growth at all costs this company. Yes, we are a growth company, but it’s efficient growth as well too, and we’ll continue to do that. And we expect we’re going to generate close to $2 billion over the next two years. And given the $5.1 billion we have, we think it’d be great to manage dilution through that. And we still have the opportunity if we find great candidates to hire faster if we so choose.