As the founder, owner, and chief investment officer of Kerrisdale Capital Management Sahm Adrangi directs how this firm’s hedge fund money is allocated. He generally focuses on long-term value investments but when he sees an opportunity to make money from a special situation he takes action. How this generally works is if he and his analysts see a company whose stock is very overvalued in their opinion he will short this company’s stock, meaning his hedge fund will make money if that stock tanks. He then releases a report about the company and what is wrong with it followed up by a telephone conference call where he explains in more detail what the team at Kerrisdale Capital Management has uncovered.
One of the special opportunities arose in February 2018 when Eastman Kodak Company (NYSE: KODK) made a big splashy announcement that they were entering the world of cryptocurrencies. They unveiled KODAKOne which is their new platform for buying and selling photographs. The way to buy photos from this platform is to use Eastman Kodak’s new cryptocurrency called KODAKCoin. In exchange, the person who sold the photograph is paid in KODAKCoin.
Sahm Adrangi said this entire plan is doomed to failure and investors in this company will never earn and dividends from it. He pointed out that Eastman Kodak has been on shaky ground for years and has far too much debt, perhaps too much to keep servicing which puts them at risk of default. He said this is a poorly run company where the fundamentals are poor and their leaping onto the cryptocurrency bandwagon is just a smoke and mirrors game to hide this fact. Sahm Adrangi also questioned why anyone would want to be paid in KODAKCoin which has nothing backing its value and its value can change dramatically very quickly, like all cryptocurrencies do.
Having been in the investing business for 14 years Sahm Adrangi has experienced the highs and lows of the financial industry. He earned an economics degree in 2003 from Yale University and was soon working for Deutsche Bank. He started Kerrisdale in 2009 and has earned a reputation as a savvy investor.
When Randy Ray and Wendy Lewis decided to retire in 2009, the industrious and successful couple thought that they would be able to ease into the idle life of golf courses, grandkids and shuffle board. It turned out that they had seriously underestimated their own capacity for boredom. It didn’t take long for the couple, who had founded dozens of successful businesses over their long career, to start filling their time with entrepreneurial pursuits.
Lewis began selling a few health and beauty products out of the couple’s sprawling Florida estate. Ray soon joined in. This collaboration marked the beginning of the company known as Jeunesse Global, which would grow into one of the premier health and beauty direct-marketing companies in the world.
Ray and Lewis both had deep experience in the health and beauty sector. As one of the most renowned salesmen in the direct-marketing business, Ray was able to quickly craft a business plan that provided real economic opportunities to distributors of Jeunesse Global products across the globe. At the same time, Lewis was able to immediately begin developing some of the most revolutionary products that the industry had seen in decades.
By the end of the first year of operations, Jeunesse Global had done nearly $1 million in sales. Exponential growth would become the rule for the company. By its fifth year, it counted thousands of distributors and tens of thousands of customers. With the introduction of the Youth Enhancement System, Jeunesse would soon be making waves on a global scale.
Lewis was determined to find gaps in the current market and begin tailoring innovative products to fill them. The Youth Enhancement System was the answer. Featuring more than a dozen products, the Youth Enhancement System forms a total-health solution, allowing people to get all of their daily health and beauty products from a single, comprehensive source.
The Youth Enhancement System is the main tool in the company’s arsenal for the goal it has set of bringing about what it refers to as Generation Young. This is the first generation of people who have all the critical tools at their disposal to stave off the worst effects of aging for decades.
Philanthropy is an incredible endeavor for any individual or business, and Stream, an energy business based in the city of Dallas, Texas understands the real reasons why. Any business that only sees the financial aspect of its existence, but fails to recognize the human side is not going to succeed and prosper. That is why Stream Energy immediately took up the cause to help neighborhoods in need when a natural disaster struck in its home state.
Hurricane Harvey had devastating effects that were felt well outside of the city of Houston, and will be for years. Stream Energy, like many other businesses, charities, and individuals in the state of Texas and around the country, stepped in to offer all the help that it could. Immediately following the hurricane, Stream Energy sought to aid its employees as well as its clients. The company knew that they could do more than just offer financial assistance and relief, so they set out to found a corporate sponsored charity foundation called Stream Cares.
This new foundation gives Stream Energy a way to organize and legitimize its charitable work and giving. Giving back and donating to worthwhile causes is something the company has been doing for over a decade, and encourages as part of the company’s culture. Doing this with a new organization gives confidence to those that also want to help the company in its giving, as well as encourages both employees and new clients that are looking for a company that they can trust and values many of the same ideals that they do.
From a company standpoint, setting up a philanthropic side to its revenue generating business, because it adds a new element to the company profile. Businesses that otherwise have no to little public profile are able to gain publicity and maintain an appearance in the general public, which also happens to be the intended client base.
The banquet hall was full. People who had worked in the business over the last few decades came to celebrate and honor the life of Louis Chenevert. He was the chief executive officer of United Technologies Corporation and it was only because of his hard work and his wisdom that the company is thriving today.
After enjoying the champagne and the hors d’oeuvres he returned to his corner office on the top floor and began to reflect on how the United Technologies Corporation became so successful. It is true that he was a wise chief executive officer and he knew his plan going in, but it was in the reflection that he realized just how strategic his ideas were.
The great recession nearly destroyed the United Technologies Corporation. When he was called to become CEO the stock price was tanking and falling by the second. He knew that something had to be done if this once great aerospace manufacturer was to survive.
The first thing he did was create extra income revenues that would help his company stay afloat. He worked with Pratt & Whitney to take their military contracts and worked with Otis to take over their corporate infrastructure contracts. Perhaps the most eyebrow raising was when he acquired the business Otis for a grand sum of $16 billion. Many people did not think that was a wise move during a time when businesses were struggling to stay together. However he knew that by diversifying in this way UTC would be able to not only survive, the company would be able to thrive.
The second thing he did was decrease the exuberant spending existed in the company. He saved his company $15 million a year just by transporting goods between his factories.
The third thing he did was regulate his company to abide by environmental law. This alone gave his company contracts that otherwise would have been out of reach.
Now retired from United Technologies Corporation, he works as a consultant for Goldman Sachs. He brings much to the table and is placed in the executive banking division.