Circle of Competence Issue #50

Masa's investors balk, search fund economics, under the radar investor, Berkshire Hathaway 2018 letter, Tesla competitor, gaming goes ma

Circle of Competence Issue #49

Bruce Flatt on investing late cycle, entropy and investing, China's real estate woes, eSports, JPM Coin, building a multifamily empire,

Free Trade and Free Markets

January 30th, Howard Marks released his latest memo titled "Political Reality Meets Economic Reality." In this magnificent piece of rhetoric, he goes after both the conservative and liberal pet causes of the day. Marks addresses protectionism and populism on the right and rising anti-capitalist sentiment on the left with poignant arguments, ending with a great vignette on America's tax scheme. Regardless of your political position, I'd highly recommend reading this politically balanced, thoughtfully written letter. I come from a small town, Rocky Mount, NC, which was home to a large textile mill up until 1996 when it closed down due to the signing of the 1994 North American Free Trade Agreem

Circle of Competence Issue #48

Thoughts on free trade and capitalism, Howard Marks' memo, robot reporters, Buffett on share repurchases, fusion energy, Clayton Homes C

Circle of Competence Issue #47

Masa Son's big bet, Venezuela's failed revolution, investor letters, Howard Marks & Bill Ford on current trends, how China's

Masayoshi Son's Big Bet

After sharing Fast Company's profile on Masa Son's Vision Fund in last week's edition, I started to think a little bit more about the implications of the massive scale at which he was deploying capital in private companies. First let's place the fund in historic context in terms of size.  After researching just how big the Vision Fund was relative to the largest private equity funds ever, the sheer magnitude of the fund was staggering. The largest (ever) private equity fund was raised by Apollo, weighing in at a massive $24.7B in 2017! By comparison, Son's Vision Fund ($100B) is 4 times as large as Apollo's fund, and will invest in late stage private companies.Their major investors include S


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