Library

The wonderful thing about investing is that you don’t have to know people personally for them to be your mentors. A lot of great investors have written articles, letters and books that are publicly available. There are many ways to invest successfully, but it’s important to find an approach that makes sense to you. 

Unlike the more “timely” weekly reading series, I intend for this page to become a library of “timeless” articles and resources that have been helpful to me in an investing context. Hopefully other people will also find them useful or, at the very least, interesting. I will add to this collection over time, so feel free to check back on occasion.

Valuation Fundamentals in Asia (2001)
Richard Lawrence of Overlook Investments discusses in detail the tools, disciplines, and procedures for financial analysis of Asian companies. Amongst other things, he covers cash flow, the evaluation of management, projections and valuation criteria. This has probably been the single most helpful resource for me as a private investor. I also highly recommend his 2015 talk at the Richard Ivey School of Business (link here). 

The Private Equity Approach to Public Equity Investing (2014)
Stan Miranda and Brendan Corcoran of Partners Capital write that “success in active equities requires a long time horizon, a value bias, deep bottom-up fundamental analysis and contrarian investors who think like business owners rather than securities analysts.” What they are really talking about is a private equity-like approach to public investing.

The Sons of Stanford (1998)
A look at the Stanford “outpost” of value investing that has evolved out of a series of graduate school courses taught by Professor Jack McDonald. Includes interviews with a number of former students who have gone on to become notable investors
The chapter is an excerpt from Andrew Kilpatrick’s Of Permanent Value.

Quantimentally PE (2016)
Dan Rasmussen’s Verdad Capital is focused on achieving private equity-like returns in the public markets. His presentation looks at the factors that explain private equity outperformance (size, value and leverage combined with debt paydown) and explains what we can learn from the numbers.

Lei Zhang’s Lecture at CBS (2015)
The low-profile founder of Hillhouse Capital shares some of the investing and life lessons he has learnt since graduating from the Yale SOM. The notes are courtesy of Zong Z. Peng.

Reflections of a Value Investor in Africa (~2008)
Francis Daniels, the co-founder of Africa Opportunity Partners, reflects on his personal investing journey and shares some lessons learnt from a career investing in the region. The presentation is a little dated but nonetheless makes for an excellent read.
A short personal note: I had the great pleasure of meeting Francis over lunch a few years ago when I was based in Johannesburg. He was very generous with his time, insights and advice. 

Changing Institutional Portfolio Management (2008)
Transcript of a guest lecture by Professor David Swensen, Yale University’s Chief Investment Officer. He outlines the three major determinants of investment returns (asset allocation, market timing and security selection) and also discusses how the endowment selects active managers. 

Scott Adams on Success (2014)
One of my favourite talks. The creator of Dilbert shares some key insights from his excellent book: How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big. His framework covers why goals are for losers, passion is overrated and how luck can be manipulated (sort of).