A Simple Forager

April 22, 2024
CIO Letters

Assuming the Australian Fund does get delisted, it will be the last element of a two-year project to simplify the Forager business.

By July 2024, we could be back to two simple open-ended funds with the same Responsible Entity and registry, both accepting daily applications and redemptions.

We are often critical of listed company managers for not focusing on their core strategy. I run a business with just 10 employees and I can inform you that it is easier said than done. It is very easy to add new ideas, products and technologies to your business. They all come with logic and rationale that makes sense. It is much harder to take them away. Consultants and strategy experts love to talk about “mission, vision and values”. I’ve found it mostly a waste of time. Boxer Mike Tyson once said “everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face”. In a business as dependent on financial markets as ours, you get punched in the face often enough to know there’s no point planning too far ahead.

That only makes it all the more important to understand the principles on which we operate, though. I have a similar conversation with a lot of young people about their careers. Many seem stressed about not knowing exactly what they want to do and ask me how I knew I wanted to be a fund manager. The answer is, I didn’t.

I knew I wanted to be challenged intellectually. I knew I wanted to do something I was interested in. I knew I wanted to work hard with people I liked and I knew I wanted to be financially independent. Within those parameters, I was open to wherever life took me. Each decision I had to make, I asked those four questions and made my choice. It could have led to an equally happy alternate life, but those principles led me here to founding Forager.

Rather than a destination, our business needs its own decision making principles. At Forager, we want to create wealth for our clients. We want to give Forager staff fulfilling careers. In recent years, we’ve learned that we want to keep it simple. By the end of this financial year, we hope to have taken some big steps forward on all three fronts.

This is an excerpt from the Forager Chief Investment Office Letter March Quarterly Report