Foot Locker

“Only buy something that you would be perfectly happy to hold if the market shut down for 10 years.” Buffett Phil Knight started out as a retailer under the banner of Blue Ribbon Sports. Knight was selling Tiger brand running shoes. Fairly quickly, due to negotiations over product design, product

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NFL Draft Pick #199

The NFL Draft is tonight. But, the more important draft is still coming in the next few days, pick #199. Below are a list of 12 names that were drafted in the same position as the most famous NFL player in the past 18 years. (I didn’t list them all

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Verisign: The Golden Yardstick

Suzuki Violin is a method for teaching violin. There is a set of books that contain numerous songs that the children learn in order. If you go to an early violin recital for Suzuki students, you might hear 5 different children playing a simplified version of Twinkle, Twinkle because it

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Apple: The Definition of a Great Business

I wanted to write a few thoughts on Apple’s earnings. This isn’t comprehensive nor exhaustive. If you would like to discuss Apple in more detail, feel free to email me below to schedule a call. A good business produces enough cash to do two things. First, the business will be

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Red Card: Be a Business Analyst not a Stock Analyst

Long ago in a place far, far away (well actually just Germany), my roommates and I agreed to speak only German, despite all being native English speakers. The adult figure among us, Page, was a big soccer fan. If someone spoke in English, Page would approach that person and pull

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The Highly Confident Turnaround CEO

Six months ago I read a transcript of an interesting exchange between a CEO and an analyst. The analyst posed a frank question about the future prospects to an incoming CEO. Her reputation was stellar. Her pointed response made me note the conversation. I wanted to come back later and

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Returns for Great vs. Bad Businesses

Munger and The Cattle Rancher

Munger’s ability to find great businesses is directly related to his ability to consistently discard bad businesses. He is excellent at inverting, and discarding the bad businesses as quickly as possible.

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The Abominable No-Man and Bad Management

Some investors think a business is good, but know that management is bad.  These investors justify the investment based on the idea that the great price of the business is worth the bad management. This is akin to marrying a supermodel who is going to yell at you all day.  Whatever pleasure your eyes may derive from the marriage, your ears will endure a greater amount of pain in the long run. The pocketbooks of those partnering with bad management are likely to see a similar 50%+ decline in their net worth.

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Why Write?

Bird by Bird is, in my opinion, a poor book with an excellent chapter on First Drafts, namely “Terrible First Drafts.”* I quote below: Now, practically even better news than that of short assignments is the idea of ‘terrible’ first drafts.  All good writers write them.  This is how they

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A Clean Room and 8 Year Projections

There is a huge element of “unknowns” in investing.  A business is a highly complex organism that is evolving and changing each day, not to mention that the environment and its competitors are doing the same each day, sometimes at an alarming rate.  These unknowns force a passive investor to

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