To be honest, I knew about Sam Zell and his real estate empire to some extent but I didn’t consider him as a great general (value) investor so far. This clearly changed after reading his “Memoirs”.
It’s no secret that I like French family run companies. TFF Group, G. Perrier, Installux, Dom Security are just the main examples of these kind of companies.
Boiron SA is a French company which Bloomberg lists as “Specialty Pharmaceutical” company. Although “Specialty Pharma” is not exactly what they do. in fact, Boiron SA ist the only listed company that I know that exclusively produces and sells Homeopathic “pharmaceutical” products. The call themselves “World leader” of this field.
A few words on Homeopathy
As I have covered Softbank just recently (part 1, part 2 ) and as I consider Insurance companies to be somehow in my circle of competence, the news that Softbank wants to acquire 30% of Swiss Re for 10 bn USD of course sparked my interest.
The big question of course is: Why on earth would Masa Son do that ?
Looking at his vision statements, his vision is a connected world via the internet of things, lots of robots, smart AIs and a lot of computing power. So he is buying chip makers (ARM; Nvidia), data companies like Uber, mobile phone companies, robotic companies etc. So far so good, somehow this could fit together.
But a Reinsurance company ? WTF is that ?
“Machine, Platform Crowd” tries to summarize what in the author’s view are the currently most important changes that will impact both, individuals and companies going forward:They call it the “Triple Revolution” consisting of:
- The emergence of machines (Robots, AI)
- The evolution from Products to Platforms
- The increasing importance of the Crowd vs. the “core”