DAEGU, South Korea – Billionaire investor Warren Buffett said on Monday that he was looking at more acquisition targets after a $9 billion buy of U.S. specialty chemical maker Lubrizol by his Berkshire Hathaway last week.
"We are looking for large businesses to buy...we are ready to invest in any country... most likely in the United States," the chairman and chief executive of Berkshire Hathaway told reporters during his visit to South Korea to attend a ground-breaking ceremony for a factory run by a unit of an Israeli firm owned by his investment vehicle.
Sitting on $38 billion of cash equivalent at the end of last year, Berkshire needs "major acquisitions," Buffett said in his annual letter to its shareholders last month.
Buffett, ranked the world's third-richest man by the Forbes 2011 list, said he was also looking at buying entire businesses and large-cap shares in South Korea, adding that geopolitical risks associated with North Korea had not reduced his interest in the South.
Berkshire holds stakes in South Korean steelmaker POSCO and China car and battery maker BYD.
Last week, the Omaha, Nebraska-based firm, which is also a major shareholder of Coca Cola and Wells Fargo, announced a $9 billion purchase of U.S. specialty chemical maker Lubrizol in a bet on industrial growth in emerging economies.
Buffett, in gray sweat pants and running shoes, arrived in the southeastern city of Daegu late on Sunday via his private jet and was greeted by more than 100 citizens and a city brass band. Some were holding banners welcoming him and others waved Korean and U.S. flags.
The 80-year-old investor cancelled a plan to make his first trip to Japan to speak at the opening of a new factory on Tuesday after an devastating earthquake, tsunami and nuclear scare hit the country.
Buffett will meet South Korean president Lee Myung-bak later in the day and will travel to India on Tuesday to launch his firm's insurance selling portal. (Reporting by Hyunjoo Jin; Editing by Jonathan Hopfner)