What We’re Reading

Here are a few good articles the Collaborative Fund team came across this week.

Investing wisdom

A great interview with Brent Beshore:

SN: You mentioned a very important point about maintaining a healthy amount of paranoia about what can go wrong. How do you bring that into your investment process?

We start from a default of “no.” We’ve learned that while everything looks easy at 30,000 ft., anything worth doing is brutally difficult. The only people who think it’s easy are fools, or those who got lucky. Every organization is challenged in numerous ways and comes with complexity, politics, and disorder. Thinking otherwise is folly.

We’re looking for companies that pull us to “yes.” These companies have something unusual about them that we find particularly attractive. It can be market position, customer entrenchment, brand, or a rare type of expertise. And of course, the purchase price matters.

Environment

France skates to where the puck is headed:

France will outlaw the sale of all petrol and diesel vehicles by 2040, its new environment minister, Nicolas Hulot, has announced.

It will also ban any “new project to use petrol, gas or coal”, as well as shale oil, by that date.

Batteries

Volvo is one step ahead of France:

Volvo Car Group said on Wednesday all new models launched from 2019 will be fully electric or hybrids, spelling the eventual end to nearly a century of Volvos powered solely by the internal combustion engine.

Exponential

Lyft’s growth and path to close the gap with Uber has been amazing to watch:

Lyft, which is only available in the U.S., just announced it’s hit one million rides a day. Uber announced one million rides worldwide in December 2014. Lyft also says it’s seen 48 consecutive months of ride growth and is on track to hit an annualized ride rate of 350 million.

Motivation

Amazing:

Mr. Hurst and his colleagues estimate that, since 2004, video games have been responsible for reducing the amount of work that young men do by 15 to 30 hours over the course of a year. Using the recession as a natural experiment, the authors studied how people who suddenly found themselves with extra time spent their leisure hours, then estimated how increases in video game time affected work.

Demographics

This sounds apocalyptic but is actually pretty reasonable:

For now, the world’s population continues to rise. From today’s 7.4 billion people, we might reach 9 billion or so, mostly because of high fertility in Africa. The UN predicts a continuing upward trend, with population reaching around 11.2 billion in 2100. But this seems unlikely. After hitting the demographic doldrums, no country yet has seen its fertility recover. Many demographers expect a global crash to be under way by 2076.

Have a good weekend.


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