The Real Deal New York

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway plans big international expansion

Company has teamed up with London and Berlin-based brokerages, eyes Paris, Madrid, Hong Kong and others
November 13, 2018 11:31AM

Warren Buffett, Samuel Bikhit , and Dubai (Credit: Getty Images, Kay & Co, and Wikipedia)

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices has teamed up with a London-based firm to expand his residential brokerage to Milan, Dubai and Vienna.

Berkshire is partnering with Kay & Co. — now called Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Kay & Co. — to open as many as 10 new offices in the next decade, Bloomberg reported. Kay is Berkshire’s second franchisee in Europe. In March, the company added Berlin-based Rubina Real Estate.

The company is also in talks with prospective partners in Paris and Madrid and is mulling expanding into Hong Kong, Mexico City and Tokyo.

“We’ve got a number of markets already teed up,” Gino Blefari, CFO of HSF Affiliates, which includes Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices. “Eventually we’ll be in all the major metropolitan markets.”

Representatives for Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices said Brexit’s impact on the housing market in the U.K. didn’t deter it from partnering with a London-based company, which focuses on posh neighborhoods like Mayfair and Hyde Park.

Homeservices of America was the second largest brokerage in the U.S. in 2017, having sold $125.4 billion worth of real estate. It’s been on an acquisition tear, scooping up Long & Foster Cos. and Houlihan Lawrence in the last two years. [Bloomberg] — Kathryn Brenzel