The Prize

The sticky Enron-like end of the once lauded Wirecard, has prompted a thick line of copy on the dangers of investing in loss making businesses and CEOs with a fondness for black polo neck sweaters, a size or two, too small. Indeed, the red flags are many: glossy future profit forecasts, eye-popping C-suite pay, a… Read More The Prize

T-Mobile

As corporate deals go, it was not straightforward. Nothing plain vanilla about it. It was, though, according to Refinitiv, the biggest secondary stock offering of a somewhat bruised 2020. There were offers of common stock, mandatory convertibles, and a rights offer. The banks involved could also push a bit more out of the kiosk, via… Read More T-Mobile

Tech-tastic

It might well go down as the quote to frame the frothy period of COVID induced lockdown. Akin to Citi CEO Chuck Prince’s “keep dancing” quip, that so summed up the moody housing kerfuffle of late 2008. On Microsoft’s Q2 earnings call, Satya Nadella, said: “We’ve seen two years’ worth of digital transformation in two… Read More Tech-tastic

Wyndham Hotels

It is said that Tormund Giantsbane could laugh the snow off of mountain tops. It is also said that he once cut open the belly of a sleeping giantess and slept in her for warmth during a winter storm. For Kristofer Hivju, who plays the famed wilding raider in the uber-hit Game of Thrones, the… Read More Wyndham Hotels

Boom

It was always going to come. The second wave. And when it did stocks that had been running with a little too much heat in the tyres, got hit. Inevitably. That the second wave was nuanced by contained outbreaks, and outbreaks that turned out to be localised first outbreaks, offered scant support: sell. The loose… Read More Boom

Zimmer

“We were talking about mid-single digit growth rates up until the time the pandemic hit” so said Bryan C. Hanson, CEO of Zimmer Biomet, on a recent call with analysts. This would have been, he went on, perhaps staring wistfully into space, “the best growth rate we’ve been able to present on our core business… Read More Zimmer

Jobs, Jobs, Jobs

“Dow surges more than 300 points on blockbuster jobs data” wheezed the CNBC headline; a payroll headline so sugary it sent an embattled President Trump into full CAPS LOCK mode on Twitter. It’s no wonder that Google search trends for day trading has exploded. The stock market is a one way bet. And yet, and… Read More Jobs, Jobs, Jobs

Company guidance

“The whole thing is nuts” fumed Barry Diller into his desktop camera. The opportunity for the Chairman of Expedia and IAC, owner of digital assets such as Vimeo and Tinder, to fume, came about after CNBC’s Squawk Box went looking for a fiery exclusive on the quarterly brouhaha of company guidance. Diller, who built an… Read More Company guidance

Equifax

Jeff Immelt, the former CEO of GE, described Mark Begor as a “turnaround” guy, after tapping him up to lead GE Capital’s loss making real estate business in 2011. This Begor did, glossing a thirty-five year career at the company before packing his bags and turning his arm over in Private Equity. Begor is now… Read More Equifax

Market sweats

On an analyst call Pulte Homes, the third largest homebuilder in the US, gave some sharp insights into the stiff resilience of the housing market, and virile recovery in the data post the easing of lockdown confinement. Home buyers have not been hit, the mortgage market is liquid and forbearance measures have prevented distress and… Read More Market sweats