My friend Amit Wadhwaney, whom I have now known for almost a decade, and who until recently was Portfolio Manager with Third Avenue Managment, delivered an excellent talk to my students in MDI. Here is the link to the video:
And a link to his slides:
Amit’s style of value investing is quite distinct from mine (he focuses on net asset values, I focus on moats). One of the things I had told Amit was that by now, my students at MDI were probably fed up of hearing about moats from me and he should not use the “M” word in his talk. Rather, he should talk about his own style of value investing. He did that brilliantly, of course, and ended up using the “M” word only a couple of times!
As you watch Amit speak (sometimes you’ll have to strain your ears a bit— Amit is so soft spoken that even the microphone had to strain its ears to hear him), you will witness his adventures in value investing in multiple countries ( the example about his investing in Pakistan was my favorite) and how bottoms up, macro-myopic investing into “safe and cheap” businesses works in the long term.
A great way to learn from Amit is to read his letters written to the shareholders of The Third Avenue International Value Fund. In almost every letter, he picks up a topic related to value investing and puts down his thoughts on esoteric concepts like “Catalysts, Value Traps and the Like,” “Holding Companies in the Fund,” “Some Thoughts on Buy Discipline,” “Sell Discipline Revisited,” “Accounting Substance or Accounting Form,” and “Some Thoughts on Uncertainty.” I have enjoyed reading those letters over the years and I am sure you too will. You can get them from:
Amit learned value investing from his teacher Marty Whitman— the legendary value investor who founded Third Avenue Management and who has authored many excellent books on value investing. My favorite is “The Aggressive, Conservative Investor“. Marty sent me a signed copy of this marvelous book in mid 1990’s when I had written to him as a student.
Both Marty and Amit have influenced me a lot in developing my own investment philosophy. By studying Marty and Amit, I have ingrained in my own investment thinking, important concepts like OPM (Other People’s Money), OPMI (Outside Passive Minority Investors), Resource Conversion, Positive Cash Carry, and the Primacy of Balance Sheet.
I have learnt much from Amit and I hope this video will encourage you to do that too.