Paper Portfolio – March 2020 Update

During February, the Paper Portfolio experienced volatile performance as global equity markets reacted to the pandemic potential of COVID-19. The portfolio ended the month down 1.32%, reversing the strong gains delivered in the first two weeks of February. While the reversal was disappointing, the Paper Portfolio continues to perform very well relatively and is well-positioned … Continue reading Paper Portfolio – March 2020 Update

What Ails Tencent

It’s been almost two years since I last wrote about Tencent. Since the inception of this blog, Capital Flywheels has had a preference for Alibaba over Tencent (before it was consensus) primarily because Alibaba is not only one of the two dominant ecosystems in China, but because Alibaba/ecommerce has an easier path to go global. The … Continue reading What Ails Tencent

Tidbits #4

As previously mentioned, Nintendo is following in the footsteps of Disney and will be building theme park attractions. Bloomberg recently published more details on what that may look like ahead of Super Nintendo World opening at Universal Studio Japan: Super Nintendo World is slated to open this summer in Osaka, featuring a Power Up Band … Continue reading Tidbits #4

Tidbits #3

Fornite is officially a school sport: Fortnite, one of the world’s most popular games, will now be an official high school sport and college sport, thanks to an LA-based startup called PlayVS. The company has partnered with Epic Games to bring competitive league play to the collegiate and high school level. This also marks PlayVS’s entry … Continue reading Tidbits #3

Tidbits #1

Going forward, I’m planning on publishing posts with assorted links of interest under the headline “Tidbits”. Makes it easier to create lightweight thoughts while I wait for bigger ideas to finish baking. A couple of items that almost slipped by during the Alibaba Single’s Day hullaballoo… About 24% of U.S. retailers say they plan to … Continue reading Tidbits #1

Paper Portfolio – December Update

During November, the paper portfolio outperformed the S&P500 by 0.92%. This number, however, masks the underlying strength of the portfolio since ~40% of the value is still allocated to cash. The stock-only portion of the portfolio outperformed the S&P500 by 3.89% with significant strength across almost all holdings except for Uber, Match, and Activision Blizzard. … Continue reading Paper Portfolio – December Update

Open Sesame

According to Wikipedia, Ali Baba opens the mouth of a treasure cave using the magical phrase “open sesame” in the story of “Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves”. In similar ways, our Alibaba has been making incredible progress in opening a multitude of modern treasure caves… Caves such as… Single’s Day. Just a few days … Continue reading Open Sesame

Paper Portfolio – November Update

During October, the paper portfolio continued to show some divergence vs the S&P500, underperforming by 1.35%. While a number of the stocks recovered some of the losses experienced during September, several other stocks continued to experience weakness. Nonetheless, each of the underlying businesses remain strong. This portfolio should be well positioned to outperform sometime in … Continue reading Paper Portfolio – November Update

Game On

As expected, October shaped up to be an eventful month for Activision. After starting the month with very impressive numbers for Call of Duty mobile, the company almost went off track after getting involved in the politically sensitive topic of Hong Kong governance. While that remains a sensitive topic, the issue seems to have died … Continue reading Game On

“Arming the rebels of the commerce industry”

Shopify announced quarterly results yesterday and raised guidance. Although the market appeared to be more short-sighted and reacted poorly largely because the results were “good but not good enough”, the company continues to execute well on its long term vision. Along with results, the company released a new report highlighting the impact of their business, … Continue reading “Arming the rebels of the commerce industry”

Activision Data Points Continue to Point Up

The mobile version of videogame franchise “Call of Duty” racked up 100 million downloads in its first week, industry site Sensor Tower said on Tuesday, dwarfing the debuts of previous smashes including “Fortnite” and “PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds” (PUBG). Source: Reuters Third party data can sometimes be off, but even with a meaningful margin of error, 100 … Continue reading Activision Data Points Continue to Point Up

Activision – Sleeping Giant or Past its Prime?

Before Tencent Games conquered China and became the world’s largest gaming company a few years ago, Activision Blizzard dominated the industry. In many ways, Blizzard (specifically) was one of the early leaders in exploring a lot of the themes that make the gaming industry interesting today. Blizzard was a leader in pioneering and mainstreaming new … Continue reading Activision – Sleeping Giant or Past its Prime?

Betting on Big

One of the more vexing problems I’ve spent more time thinking about recently, is how most of the attractive businesses with phenomenal business models are already quite large. In fact, many of the businesses I think worth owning are large or mega-caps. However, despite their size, many of these companies are outgrowing smaller peers and … Continue reading Betting on Big

The Future of Ecommerce: Utilitarian vs Social

When people think about ecommerce today, they likely think about ecommerce along the lines of C2C (consumer-to-consumer), B2C (business-to-consumer), or B2B (business-to-business) – in other words, classification by type of buyers and sellers. Or perhaps people think about 1P (1st party) vs 3P (3rd party), depending on whether the ecommerce platform itself engages in the … Continue reading The Future of Ecommerce: Utilitarian vs Social

The Other Supply Chain Gorilla That May One Day Challenge Amazon

As detailed in my recent post, Amazon has built up quite a formidable competitive advantage through Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). Not just on the demand side, which every happy Prime subscriber is already familiar with, but also on the supply side. In that post I concluded the following: Fulfillment is clearly beneficial on the demand … Continue reading The Other Supply Chain Gorilla That May One Day Challenge Amazon