Company News

Pilot to Stay on Course as Berkshire Hathaway Becomes Majority Owner

No changes planned as multinational conglomerate takes over
Pilot store and Volvo truck
Photograph courtesy of Pilot Co.

Berkshire Hathaway became the majority owner of Pilot Co. on Jan. 31, but it will remain business as usual for the convenience-store giant.

Berkshire Hathaway, Omaha, Nebraska, is now majority owner, at 80%, and the Haslam family, which founded Pilot, retains 20%, said Stephanie Myers, senior manager of corporate communications and public relations at Pilot Co.

“They’re the majority owner, but Pilot will continue to run the business as usual,” Myers told CSP. “Shameek Konar, our CEO, has been working through what the future of Pilot will look like and has been finalizing our strategy for the next few years.”

No changed are planned, Myers said.

  • Pilot is No. 12 on CSP’s 2022 Top 202 ranking of U.S. c-store chains by store count.

“Since 1958, Pilot Co. has remained at the forefront of keeping North America moving as the industry’s leading travel center network,” Konar said in a statement. “We will keep building upon our company’s strengths to be the preferred choice for all interstate drivers and are committed to sustained growth and innovation across our travel center network and energy division. Pilot Co. will remain headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee, and our longstanding dedication to serving professional drivers and local communities will continue be an integral part of our business."

Myers said there is a very small piece of Pilot’s energy trading business the company decided to eliminate.

“But it’s not really a material change, it’s not impacting our energy division as a whole, it was impacting less than 15 people,” she said. “It was a specific type of trading that we decided to eliminate from our trading practice.”

In 2017, Berkshire Hathaway, owned by Warren Buffet, bought 38.6% of Pilot Travel Centers LLC for $2.76 billion. Per the original agreement, Berkshire Hathaway’s stake in Pilot rose to 80% in the current quarter, according to Barron’s.

With headquarters in Knoxville, Tennessee, Pilot has more than 800 retail and fueling locations and supplies more than 14 billion gallons of fuel per year to the market. Its Pilot and Flying J travel center network includes more than 750 locations in 44 states and six Canadian provinces with more than 790 restaurants, 75,000 truck parking spaces, 5,300 showers, 6,200 diesel lanes and truck maintenance and tire services with Southern Tire Mart at Pilot Flying J. The One9 Fuel Network connects a variety of fueling locations to provide smaller fleets and independent professional drivers with value, convenience, credit and perks.

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