The P/V Podcast
Episode 17 / May 2021
Staley and Jonathon have a wide-ranging discussion, covering the past, present and future of the industry. They begin with Jonathon’s decision to close Highfields and return investors’ capital in 2018, amidst a backdrop of value being dramatically out of favour [4:39 – 10:44]. Jonathon then touches on the work that his family foundation, the One8 Foundation, is doing and the long-lasting impact of COVID on education [10:45 – 16:19]. Next, Jonathon shares his reflections and insights on investing after having stepped away from the computer every day [16:20 -23:30]. He discusses value vs. growth and how those traditional measures have morphed over time, touching on some of the biggest mistakes he believes value investors have collectively made [23:31 – 28:10]. Staley and Jonathon then discuss active vs. passive and how the institutional investor committee mindset has shifted [28:11 – 32:17]. Jonathon delves deeper into how his investment philosophy has developed over the last two decades [32:18 – 35:47]. Next, he addresses the recent SPAC mania and GameStop frenzy, contrasting this with the long-term value of shorting and highlighting his experience shorting Enron [35:48 – 45:33]. Next, Jonathon discusses lessons learned from setting up an asset management business, including key takeaways on getting the right structure, hiring the right talent and the need to evolve over time as a firm grows [45:34 – 49:26]. Staley and Jonathon discuss interest rates and inflation as a risk to the industry [49:27 – 53:28] and then discuss great businesses and management teams on Jonathon’s wish list, covering a few shared war stories along the way [53:29 – 58:24]. Jonathon talks about the importance of a long-term focused client base [58:25 – 1:05:10], shares some of his favorite reads [1:05:11- 1:06:26] and ends by talking about his future plans [1:06:30 – 1:08:09].
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