Category Archives: What we read

My 10 Cents on the WeWork IPO – The “AWS of Commercial Real Estate” or a “Double Hype” ?

WeWork as the AWS of Commercial Real Estate

A lot has been written in the past few days about the upcoming WeWork IPO. I had linked to a few articles on Saturday and FTAlphaville has some pretty sarcastic but good coverage as well.

Yesterday then the always brilliant Stratechery came out with in interesting post. Ben Thompson thinks that WeWork could develop into something like AWS (for real estate) which now is repsonsible for most of Amazon’s profits. But he clearly acknowledges there are a lot of governance issues etc. etc.  The “WeWork is like AWS” story is nothing new and is mostly pushed by WeWork itself and combined with what they think is the adressable market (hint: all commercial real estate globally) could justify almost any valuation.

WeWork’s actual product: Open Plan offices (for start-ups and wannabes)

What I have been missing in the whole discussion so far is a look at WeWork’s actual product which in my opinion is the following:

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Some links

Very nice post: Investment lessons from 3 weeks of fatherhood

Should value investors look at money losing companies ?

Is Coporate Debt the weak link in a potential market downturn ?

Will the WeWork IPO maybe mark the peak of the current Unicorn mania ?  Despite the valuation, there are many red flags in the S-1 prospectus.

Harry Markopolos, main Madoff critic, issued a 170 page attack on GE. John Hempton has a different view (part 1, part 2)

Interested in knowing more about Venture Capital ? Then the free Venture Deals online course  the best opportunity

Must Read: Deep thoughts on the current Venture “Funding bubble” for loss making companies

Some links

Litigation Finance company Burford Capital was “attacked” by Muddy Waters but tries to strike back

Italian based, AIm listed “bio plastic unicorn” Bio-on also was attacked by a short seller

Madison Square Garden Spin-off analysis

The Valuesque blog explains how companies can pump up Goodwill even after an acquisition

A detailed look into UK “quality stock” AG Barr

John Kingham (UK Value Investor) with an analysis of UK bus operator Stagecoach

Paul Singer /Elliott wants to split up Scout24. Their more detailed publication can be found here.

Some links

Great post from A16Z on “Hidden network” business models

Interesting analysis on the application and limits of Benford’s law in order to detect accounting fraud (example Steinhoff)

Q2 report from TGV Intrinsic, a new addition to the Langfrist family

Nice writup on the Juventus Turin turn-around by Greenwood

“Let my people go surfing” (Patagonia story) sounds like a must read book

“Activist” hedge funds are under increasing pressure themselves these days

The GlobalStockPicking blog has discovered an interesting Polish SaaS company called LiveChat


Idea generation: Q2 2019 Investment letters


A few days ago, I posted the link to a Reddit collection of Q2 investment letters. Many of these letters plus some others in my opinion are good inspirations to lok for new ideas.  With less time available for me to create “original” ideas, I mentioned some time ago that I will use these letters much more to find interesting cases than in the past.

Inittially, I wanted to create my private “to do”list of companies that I want to look at. The criteria for selcting ideas is quite subjective.

However in order to leverage my readership, I  decided to create a post with my selected “stolen ideas” and hope for some constructive feedback from my readers. Here is the list what I found interesting and why.

Selected ideas from Q2 letters:

Choice Equities: Par Technology
Interesting case of a “sum-of parts” company with a SaaS business hidden behind other stuff

Tweedy: BASF
One of the better managed German companies. Cyclical but potentially good opportunityin a real economic downturn. Business is hard to disrupt

Alta Fox: Keyword Studios
Interesting business model (outsourcing of Video Game prodcution) and European based company. Expensive but potentially very interesting.

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