15th Annual Value Investor Conference - Omaha
of Nebraska at Omaha, College of Business Adminstration
Thursday and Friday, May 3 - 4, 2018
Staley Cates, Will Thorndike, Robert Hagstrom, Jeff Gramm , Jeff Matthews, Sanjay Bakshi, Glen Arnold, Barbara Ann Bernard, Jon Clifton, François Rochon, Guy Spier, Chris Swasbrook, Dave Whorton
Keynote Speaker: Kunal Kapoor
Vice-Chairman, Principal, Southeastern Capital Management, Longleaf Partners Fund
Staley Cates is the President of Southeastern Asset Management, Inc., an independent global investment management firm. Southeastern manages over $19 billion as the investment advisor to the Longleaf Partners family of mutual and UCITS funds and to separately managed institutional accounts. Mr. Cates joined Southeastern in 1986. Morningstar named him and Co-Portfolio Manager, Mason Hawkins, Domestic Equity Fund Manager of the Year in 2006, for which they were also nominated in 2003 and 2009. In 1998 Money magazine called Longleaf "The Best Mutual Fund Family in America."
Cates attended the University of Texas and holds a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst. He is Co-Founder of New Hope Christian Academy and was a founding board member of Soulsville, Memphis Athletic Ministries, and the Memphis Grizzlies Charitable Foundation. He serves as Chairman of the Poplar Foundation, which supports various educational initiatives in Memphis. He was the Governor's appointee to the Transition Planning Commission in 2011-2012 for the consolidation of Memphis City Schools and Shelby County Schools.
Managing Director, Housatonic Partners, Author
Mr. Thorndike founded Housatonic Partners in Boston in 1994 and has been Managing Director since that time. Prior to that, Mr. Thorndike worked with T. Rowe Price Associates and Walker & Company where he was named to the Board of Directors. Mr. Thorndike is a graduate of Harvard College and the Stanford Graduate School of Business. He is a Director of Carillon Assisted Living, LLC; Lincoln Peak Holdings, LLC; OASIS Group Ltd.; QMC International, LLC; ZircoDATA; a Trustee of The Stanford Business School Trust; WGBH; the College of the Atlantic (Chair); and a founding partner at FARM, a social impact investing collaborative. He is the author of The Outsiders.
Author, Sr Portfolio Manager, EquityCompass Strategies, Stifel Financial
Robert Hagstrom is Senior Portfolio Manager for Stifel Financial Corp's investment advisory subsidiary, EquityCompass Strategies. Mr. Hagstrom focuses on developing equity strategies that will invest globally combining EquityCompass' quantitative approach and his own qualitative approach to investing. Mr. Hagstrom has more than 28 years of investment experience, including 14 years as Portfolio Manager for Legg Mason Capital Management's Growth Equity Strategy.
Mr. Hagstrom was most recently Chief Investment Strategist of Legg Mason Investment Counsel. Previously, he was Senior Vice President and Portfolio Manager of the Growth Equity Strategy at Legg Mason Capital Management. Prior to that, he served as President and Chief Investment Officer of Legg Mason Focus Capital, General Partner of Focus Capital Advisory, and Principal at Lloyd, Leith and Sawin. Mr. Hagstrom acted as Portfolio Manager with First Fidelity Bank from 1989 to 1991. From 1984 to 1989, he was a Financial Advisor for Legg Mason Wood Walker, Inc.
Mr. Hagstrom is the author of nine investment books, including The New York Times Best Seller, "The Warren Buffett Way," (which has sold over 1.5 million copies and is now in its third edition), "The Warren Buffett Portfolio: Mastering the Power of the Focus Investment Strategy," "The Detective and the Investor: Uncovering the Investment Techniques from the Legendary Sleuths," and "Investing: The Last Liberal Art" (second edition). He earned his Bachelor and Master of Arts degrees from Villanova University and is a member of the CFA Institute and the CFA Society of Philadelphia.
Author, Adj. Professor, Columbia Business School,
Founder and Portfolio Manager, Bandera Partners, Director, Tandy Leather
Topic: "Boardroom Battles and the Rise of Shareholder Activism"
Jeff Gramm manages a hedge fund, and teaches value investing at Columbia Business School. His recently published book, Dear Chairman: Boardroom Battles and the Rise of Shareholder Activism, was named one of the best books of 2016 by the Financial Times. It has been praised as "a terrific read" by Andrew Ross Sorkin in the New York Times, "a revelation" by the Financial Times, "a grand story" by The Wall Street Journal, and “an engaging and informative book” by The New Yorker. Charles Schwab wrote about Dear Chairman, “It should be required reading for anyone who wants to participate in our great ownership system, as investor or manager.”
General Partner of Ram Partners, LP
Jeff Matthews has nearly 30 years experience on Wall Street, and has run his own hedge fund for 15 years. He started as an energy analyst at Merrill Lynch in 1979, moved into the consumer and technology fields as an analyst at several large investment firms, and founded his own hedge fund, Ram Partners LP, in 1994. His financial blog, JeffMatthewsIsNotMakingThisUp, was recommended by Barron’s in 2006 and has been featured in the Wall Street Journal’s Market Beat. His book, “Pilgrimage to Warren Buffett’s Omaha” is published by McGraw-Hill.
Sanjay Bakshi is an experienced and successful value investor/advisor and is also one of India’s best-recognized finance professors who has been teaching Security Analysis, Behavioral Finance and Business Valuation at Management Development Institute, Gurgaon since 2001. As a practitioner of value investing in India for more than 22 years, Sanjay has an excellent long-term track record.
Sanjay received M.Sc. (Economics) from London School of Economics and Political Science and B.Com. (Hons.) from University of Delhi, India. He is also a fellow member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India.
For more information on Mr. Bakshi: https://www.sanjaybakshi.net/
GLEN ARNOLD, PhD, used to be a professor of investing but concluded that academic life was not nearly as much fun, nor as intellectually stimulating, as making money in the markets. As a wealthy investor he now spends most of his time running his equity portfolio from an office in the heart of rural Leicestershire, far from the noise of the City of London. His main research focus explores the question ‘What works in investment?’, drawing on the ideas of the great investors, academic discoveries and corporate strategic analysis – see www.glen-arnold-investments.co.uk. While he used to teach on this subject in the City, he would now rather concentrate on actual investment analysis, but does explain his investment choices and discusses investment ideas at newsletters.advfn.com/deepvalueshares. He is the author of many investment books, including the UK’s bestseller.
CEO & CIO, Wincrest Capital [Bahamas]
Barbara Ann Bernard, the founder of Wincrest Capital, has a passion for investing that goes back to her days growing up in The Bahamas. It was there that a 15-year-old Barbara Ann persuaded legendary value investor Sir John Templeton, a fellow Bahamian resident, to take her on board for the first of what would become a series of summer jobs, giving her a first glimpse of the business and instilling in her a fundamentally value-oriented perspective on public markets. Later working in investment banking at Goldman Sachs and asset management at Deutsche Bank, Barbara Ann acquired a robust grasp of private market valuation that she went on to leverage at Holowesko Partners for nearly a decade, helping the hedge fund grow to several billion in AUM with her focus on special situations and takeout candidates.
Barbara Ann has kept her focus on value since striking out two years ago to launch Wincrest, where she runs a global long-short portfolio built around a foundation of in-depth research. At the 15th Annual Investor Conference in Omaha, she will share one of her latest investment ideas that exemplifies how she hunts for bargains beneath the headlines.
Jon Clifton is a Managing Partner at Gallup and a member of the company’s Executive Committee. His mission is to help the world’s 7 billion citizens be heard through the Gallup World Poll, a 100-year initiative in 160 countries to measure the “will” of every person in the world. He is responsible for the company’s global government work and is a member of the Public Release Committee, the governance board that oversees and maintains Gallup’s public release standards for data, research and methodology.
Jon is a nonresident Senior Fellow at Baylor University’s Institute for Studies of Religion and a member of the University of Nebraska College of Business Administration’s International Business Advisory Board. He serves on the board of directors of the Meridian International Center and StreetWise Partners. Jon received a bachelor’s degree in political science and history from the University of Michigan and a J.D. in international law from the University of Nebraska. He lives and works in Washington, D.C.
President and Portfolio Manager Giverny Capital
François Rochon was educated as an engineer at the École Polytechnique of Montreal. After graduating with his Masters Degree (in Science), he worked as a researcher and network engineer for INRS-Telecom and Teleglobe Canada.
Following his lifelong passion for investing, he decided to focus his career on professional money management. After managing family accounts between 1993 and 1996, he joined Montrusco & Associates as an analyst and was then promoted to Portfolio Manager. At Montrusco, François managed US accounts totaling more than $250 million.
In December 1998, François founded Giverny Capital in order to offer investment management services to clients based on his investment philosophy of owning outstanding companies for the long term.
François has written a regular investment column in the magazine "Les Affaires Plus" and has been interviewed by MSN Money and a number of television programs such as “Capital-Actions” on the RDI network. He also had a column on Webfin.com and La Presse's web site for a few years. Now you can watch his weekly video presentations on lesaffaires.com and read his column in "The Gazette" on tuesdays (twice a month).
A chapter in Andy Kilpatrick’s book, “Of Permanent Value: The Story of Warren Buffett” is written about Francois’ career.
He also sits on various boards of directors.
Author, Investment Manager, Aquamarine Fund (Switzerland)
Guy Spier is a Zurich-based investor and the author of The Education of a Value Investor. Since 1997, he has managed Aquamarine’s privately offered investment funds.
Guy previously worked as an investment banker in New York and as a management consultant in London and Paris. He has an MBA from the Harvard Business School, class of 1993, and holds a First Class degree in Politics, Philosophy and Economics from Oxford University. On graduating from Oxford, he was co- awarded the George Webb Medley prize for the best performance that year in economics. Guy currently lives in Switzerland with his wife Lory and their three children, Eva, Isaac and Sarah.
Managing Director, Elevation Capital
Christopher Swasbrook is the Managing Director and Founding Shareholder of the Manager. He was previously a Partner of Goldman Sachs JBWere Pty Limited, Co-Head of Institutional Equities at Goldman Sachs JBWere (NZ) Limited and a Foundation Broker of the New Zealand Exchange Limited (“NZX”) and prior to that an Individual Full Member of the NZ Stock Exchange (“NZSE”).
He is currently a member of the NZX Listing Sub-Committee (since 2008) and a member of the NZ Markets Disciplinary Tribunal (since 2013). He is also Chairman of NZX listed - Bethunes Investments Limited [BIL.NZX]. Mr. Swasbrook is independently recognised as a global value investor. Mr Swasbrook graduated from the University of Auckland with a BCom (Economics) in 1995.
Founder Tugboat Ventures, Entrepreneur, Investor
Dave is an entrepreneur, business leader, education reformer, and investor. At the age of sixteen, he began working at Hewlett Packard. From the manufacturing workers that he sat beside, Dave learned about the remarkable founders of HP and their HP Way. Later in life, Dave came to learn that too few companies lived by similar values.
Dave founded four companies including Good Technology and Drugstore.com. He also worked for three venture capital firms, KPCB, TPG, and Interwest. In his capacity as an investor, he worked with many successful companies, including Google, Amazon, Successfactors and Autotrader. Dave also helped develop the business plan and recruit the leadership team for Newschools Venture Fund. He continues to serve as a founding board member.
Dave founded Tugboat Ventures in 2005, an innovative entity with the objective of helping entrepreneurs bring their dreams to life through a long-term commitment to promising enterprises.
A small angel investment prior to Tugboat eventually opened his eyes to seasoned entrepreneurs who wanted to build large, profitable, innovative businesses that they would run privately for their lifetimes. In late 2012, Dave began a process of interviewing a number of these entrepreneurs—eventually over 100. He loved their persistence and purposefulness, and came to see that many embraced a people-first value system very similar to David and Bill’s at HP. Yet, across the board they felt underappreciated and often ignored due to having no plans to raise VC or PE, sell or IPO. These inspirational conversations led to a gathering in Sun Valley in October 2013, and the beginnings of the Tugboat Institute and Tugboat Evergreen, under The Tugboat Group.
Mr. Whorton has a BS in Mechanical Engineering from Berkeley and an MBA from Stanford. Dave enjoys spending time between innovative Silicon Valley and mindful Sun Valley, Idaho.