Your present management assumed responsibility at Berkshire Hathaway in May, 1965. At the end of the prior fiscal year (September, 1964) the net worth of the Company was $22.1 million, and 1,137,778 common shares were outstanding, with a resulting book value of $19.46 per share. Ten years earlier, Berkshire Hathaway’s net worth had been $53.4 million. Dividends and stock repurchases accounted for over $21 million of the decline in company net worth, but aggregate net losses of $9.8 million had been incurred on sales of $595 million during the decade.

Warren Buffett, Berkshire Hathaway Letters to Shareholders, 1975