Buffett Watch

Burlington Northern Mailing Urges Shareholders to Vote For Berkshire Hathaway Deal

A colorful 8-page brochure is being mailed by Burlington Northern Santa Fe to its shareholders, urging them to vote for the freight railroad's proposed acquisition by Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway.

A copy is included in a filing with the SEC.

The cover features a photograph of BNSF Chairman & CEO Matthew Rose, with Buffett standing behind him.   Both men are smiling.  Underneath, in orange: "We Need Your Support."

In a letter to shareholders in the brochure, Rose urges them to "vote FOR approval of the acquisition TODAY ... If you do not vote, it will have the same effect as a vote against the transaction."

In a Q&A section, the brochure quotes Buffett on why Berkshire wants to acquire BNSF:

"Our country's future prosperity depends on its having an efficient and well-maintained rail system.  Conversely, America must grow and prosper for railroads to do well.  Berkshire's $34 billion investment in BNSF is a huge bet on that company, CEO Matt Rose and his team, and the railroad industry.  Most important of all, however, it's an all-in wager on the economic future of the United States.  I love these bets."

BNSF has scheduled a special meeting of shareholders for February 11 to vote on the deal.

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