Warren Buffett has gone from being an AAPL skeptic to a massive investor in the Cupertino company. As AAPL looks set to break $500 this morning, a new report today summarises just how successful that investment has been in a single sentence …

Here’s how Business Insider’s Theron Mohamed puts it:

Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway has made more money on Apple in four years than either company was worth 20 years ago.

Here’s how that was calculated:

The famed investor’s conglomerate spent about $35 billion to acquire around 245 million Apple shares between 2016 and 2018. Its 5.7% stake in the tech titan was worth about $122 billion as of Friday’s close, meaning it has racked up an $87 billion investment gain to date.

Apple’s market cap plunged below $70 billion during the financial crisis, and only recovered to north of $87 billion in March 2009, according to YCharts. It has mushroomed more than 20-fold since then to a record $2.1 trillion on Friday.

Meanwhile, Berkshire’s market cap was less than $87 billion as recently as October 2000, compared to almost $500 billion today, YCharts data shows.

For a long time, Buffett didn’t invest much in AAPL because he said the company’s future was too unpredictable.

We held very few [AAPL shares] in the past and we’re likely to hold very few in the future. Coca-Cola is very easy for me to come to a conclusion as to what it will look like economically in five or 10 years, and it’s not easy for me to come to a conclusion about Apple.

He changed his mind in 2016, with a billion dollar investment. He later said that while he had originally thought of AAPL as a tech stock, he now simply sees it as a hugely popular brand with enormously loyal customers. Earlier this year, he said that Apple is ‘probably the best business I know in the world.’

FTC: We use income earning auto affiliate links. More.

Check out 9to5Mac on YouTube for more Apple news:

You’re reading 9to5Mac — experts who break news about Apple and its surrounding ecosystem, day after day. Be sure to check out our homepage for all the latest news, and follow 9to5Mac on Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn to stay in the loop. Don’t know where to start? Check out our exclusive stories, reviews, how-tos, and subscribe to our YouTube channel

About the Author

Ben Lovejoy's favorite gear