Why Market Leadership ≠ Wide Moat? Insights from Down Under (Bamboo Innovator Insight)

The following article is extracted from the Bamboo Innovator Insight weekly column blog related to the context and thought leadership behind the stock idea generation process of Asian wide-moat businesses that are featured in the monthly entitled The Moat Report Asia. Fellow value investors get to go behind the scene to learn thought-provoking timely insights on key macro and industry trends in Asia, as well as benefit from the occasional discussion of potential red flags, misgovernance or fraud-detection trails ahead of time to enhance the critical-thinking skill about the myriad pitfalls of investing in Asia at the microstructure- and firm-level.

Makret Leadership Down Under


Default or not, Asia a hostage to U.S. debt

Default or not, Asia a hostage to U.S. debt

5:11pm EDT

By Choonsik Yoo and Kevin Yao

SEOUL/BEIJING (Reuters) – Unless the U.S. Congress settles a political showdown to raise the country’s debt ceiling in coming weeks, it will be left on the edge of an unprecedented default. But America’s main creditors in Asia may be the least of its worries. The creditors – China, Japan and other Asian governments – have a hoard of U.S. Treasuries in their $5 trillion cache of foreign exchange reserves, the equivalent of almost a third of U.S. gross domestic product. Despite having so much at stake as bond prices lurch violently, they are not about to do anything more than minor tweaking of their portfolios. Read more of this post

Book Review by The Rational Walk: The Manual of Ideas

Book Review: The Manual of Ideas

The Rational Walk, Published on September 27, 2013 at 4:01 pm

It’s not given to human beings to have such talent that they can just know everything about everything all the time. But it is given to human beings who work hard at it – who look and sift the world for a mispriced bet – that they can occasionally find one.

— Charlie Munger

During a visit to Columbia Business School many years ago, a student asked Warren Buffett how one could best prepare for an investing career.  Mr. Buffett picked up a stack of financial reports he had brought with him and advised the students to read “500 pages like this every day”.  One of the students in the class happened to be Todd Combs.  Mr. Combs took the advice quite literally and eventually got into a habit of reading far more than 500 pages per day.  This work ethic contributed to a successful career running a hedge fund and a position at Berkshire Hathaway allocating several billion dollars of capital. Read more of this post

Arnault Pits Son Versus Daughter in LVMH Succession Test

Arnault Pits Son Versus Daughter in LVMH Succession Test

Two years ago, Bernard Arnault asked his son Antoine to run shoemaker Berluti, then this month he installed his daughter, Delphine, as executive vice president of Louis Vuitton. While her brief is to revive the handbag maker and Antoine’s task is to transform Berluti into a menswear titan, Arnault is auditioning both for another job: his own. At 64, the chief executive officer of LVMH Moet Hennessy Louis Vuitton SA (MC), already qualifies for his state pension. He hasn’t signaled he’s tiring of running the world’s largest luxury-goods company, but “at some point there is an element of succession that needs to take place,” said Berenberg analyst John Guy. Giving his children greater responsibility allows Arnault to test them, Guy said. Read more of this post

Ed Han and his wife went looking for birth announcements. What they ended up with was part of a $333 million payday

September 30, 2013


The Stork Brought a Bright Idea for a Business

Ed Han and his wife went looking for birth announcements. They ended up with part of a $333 million payday. Back in 2005, Mr. Han, a new Stanford M.B.A., and his wife, Polly Liu, were expecting a daughter and were scouring the Web for just the right notices to celebrate the event. “Going back and forth with store clerks to review endless, illegible faxed proofs of baby announcements just weeks after having a baby and likely sleep deprived seemed quite unfun,” Mr. Han says. But they couldn’t find anything affordable and well designed. Mr. Han—who had already been thinking about starting a business with a couple of friends—saw an opportunity. He joined with Laura Ching and Kelly Berger to start an online company that would design personalized baby announcements, and then go after more of the U.S. card market. Read more of this post

Schwarzman Says Selling BlackRock Was ‘Heroic’ Mistake

Schwarzman Says Selling BlackRock Was ‘Heroic’ Mistake

Steve Schwarzman said his decision 19 years ago to sell what would become the world’s largest money manager was a “heroic” mistake. Schwarzman, who runs Blackstone Group LP (BX), the largest manager of alternative investments such as private equity, in 1994 sold a mortgage-securities unit with $23 billion in assets to PNC Bank Corp. for $240 million. Schwarzman, Blackstone’s co-founder, had disagreed with the group’s leader, Laurence Fink, over methods of compensation, and the men parted ways. The unit, which traded mortgages and other fixed-income assets, changed its name from Blackstone Financial Management to BlackRock Financial Management. Read more of this post

Phil Di Bella: Passion is the one thing experience can’t teach

Phil Di Bella: Passion is the one thing experience can’t teach

Published 30 September 2013 11:44, Updated 30 September 2013 12:57

Phil Di Bella


Phillip Di Bella says, ‘Identify your passion, and see if you can build a business around it.’Photo: Glenn Hunt

I spoke at a conference for Banana Growers not long ago. Now, I know you’re thinking, what does Phillip Di Bella know about growing bananas? Nothing! So why did they ask me to speak? What could I share that would inspire farmers? The answer is: passion. Or more specifically, my own passion for my work, and my mission to inspire it in others, whatever their ambition. I think it’s a message that we all need to be reminded of from time to time. Read more of this post

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