Category: Charts & Graphs

Angel Investing Not As Prevalent nor Effective As You May Think

Angel investing has reached a new level of interest by the general public because start-ups are doing well and there are new ways to be an angel (AngelList, crowdfunding, etc.).  The New York Times recently published an article about the pros and cons of angel… Continue reading

Portfolio Churn — Enemy of Investment Returns

Churn destroys investment return.  Strangely, traditional private equity builds itself to churn.  Churn reduces investment returns for several reasons such as transaction costs, business disruption, and the difference in tax rates between ordinary income and capital gains.  This last difference is the easiest to quantify as… Continue reading

Investment Returns Are Not Greener by Changing Industries

It is easier to earn outsized investment returns in some industries over others — I agree with that conventional wisdom.  As an investor or entrepreneur, it often pays off to think hard about which industries to enter.  If you have a choice, why not increase… Continue reading

Competitive Advantage Leads to Persistently Good Performance — Like Top Tier VC Firms

It is good to be the incumbent.  Usually.  They have often built competitive advantages over time.  Except maybe in the ever-changing world of technology, it is usually an advantage for a business to have been around a long time and to have established customers, suppliers,… Continue reading

Joys of Ice Cream, Apple Pie, and Recurring Revenue

Charlie Munger, Vice Chairman of Berkshire Hathaway, once told a friend of mine that if Charlie were a young man, he would be “trying to find online recurring revenue businesses” — like many that are being built and growing today. The combination of recurring revenue… Continue reading

Great Tool for Business Decision Making in Uncertainty

In business decision making, we never have as much information or certainty as we would like.  The best business and investment minds know how to focus on the factors in a decision that are the most relevant and ignore extraneous factors.  It is a real… Continue reading

New Twist on Venture Capital with Better Risk-Adjusted Investment Returns

A higher return investment can have a broad distribution of potential outcomes, as conveyed by this graph from Howard Marks of Oaktree Capital Management (the graph is from his book The Most Important Things Illuminated). This graph is a more helpful way to understand risk… Continue reading

BCG Growth Share Matrix of Cash Cows, Dogs, and Stars

Older ideas, seen anew, can be helpful to business owners.  In that spirit, I have highlighted Economies of Scale and Michael Porter’s Five Forces previously.  Today, I highlight another older idea in the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) Growth Share Matrix that was developed by the global consulting… Continue reading

BCG Study: Superior Investment Returns From Family Business

Deep wisdom exists in how family businesses are managed for the long-term.  In fact, the financial returns for closely held businesses outperform their peer groups across business cycles according to a recent study by the Boston Consulting Group and Sophie Mignon of Ecole Polytechnique.  While… Continue reading

Five Forces by Michael Porter — Fundamentals Through Graphics

Five Forces of Competition The five forces of competition concept is one of the most influential in modern business.  It was developed by Michael Porter of the Harvard Business School.  Like all good frameworks, it takes something complicated and provides a simple, shorthand method to… Continue reading