) -- A little known hedge fund manager has been hired by

Berkshire Hathaway

(BRK.A) - Get Report

, fueling speculation that investment guru Warren Buffett is now grooming his successor.

Shortly after the closing bell, Berkshire

issued a press release

announcing the hiring of Todd Combs, the 39-year-old manager of Castle Point Capital, an

equity investment hedge fund based in Greenwich, Conn.

And it looks like Combs' responsibilities will be sizable right off the bat.

"For three years Charlie Munger and I have been looking for someone of Todd's caliber to handle a significant portion of Berkshire's investment portfolio," Buffett in Berkshire's statement. "We are delighted that Todd will be joining us."

The value of

Berkshire's stock portfolio stood at $46.4 billion

as of June 30, according to recent SEC filings. Holdings include


(FISV) - Get Report


Johnson & Johnson

(JNJ) - Get Report



(MCO) - Get Report



(WMT) - Get Report


Wells Fargo

(WFC) - Get Report


>>View Castle Point's Portfolio

According to the

Associated Press

. Combs was managing a U.S. stock portfolio at Castle Point worth around $280 million at the end of June. A report from


said Castle Point would be

winding down

with Combs' departure. He has managed the fund for about five years, media reports said.


Written by Michael Baron in New York.

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Michael Baron


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