Gustavo Ballvé on February 12th, 2012

Hi! My name is Gustavo Ballvé and I am passionate about global value investing and multi-disciplinary, independent thinking. I’m an investment analyst with 11 years’ experience and a partner at Edge Investimentos. You can know more about me in my LinkedIn profile.

I believe in setting ambitious goals and pursuing them with immense drive and energy – always with a set of strategic objectives and corresponding action steps to achieve them. In investing, that’s easier said than done: while in a few, rare occasions it’s as easy as reading a lot around a given subject, most of the times it requires all of these:

  1. A relentless pursuit of actionable frameworks, ideas, mental models and, of course, contacts who all contribute building blocks that will one day “click together”;
  2. Filtering from the multitude of data what’s really relevant and focusing on that to sufficient depth, while testing and adjusting hypothesis as new knowledge forms;
  3. Arriving at actionable investment cases – the synthesis from all these processes.

When I’m doing 1-3 above, I’m researching factors such as the quality of a company’s business model and corporate culture, and I’m looking at the honesty, alignment and real incentives of its managers, Directors and controlling shareholders. I’m researching the competitive environment in this industry and in others of similar (even if not obviously so at first) model, structure or situation. I’m figuring out how regulation plays into all of that. But most importantly, I am doing it with a Global perspective, i.e. trying to find similar situations and what outcomes it generated, discounted for the differences that will – obviously – always be there (and don’t justify not looking for it).

What makes something hard to do doesn’t usually make it irrelevant.

“Wait a second. What about prices, markets, volatility, VAR, beta, alpha?” — If what I’ve written so far seems less related to “investing” than to scientific research, investigative journalism or something of the sort, then is probably not for you (but read items 4 and 5 below and the “Why We Write” page before making up your mind). Things you won’t find here include gossip/rumors, short-term oriented “trading ideas”, charts, single-minded defenses of this or that strategy/theory and so on. The market is here to serve us and not the other way around, as investors of much greater stature have said before me.
To repeat another quote by great investors: investing is most intelligent when it is most business-like. Items 1-3 above need only* items 4-5 below to complement them (* => it ain’t that easy, as well it shouldn’t be):

  1. Patiently waiting for a reasonable price that allows significant margin of safety and then acting decisively; and
  2. Monitoring the position with paranoid conservativeness and constantly questioning one’s assumptions – while performing steps 1-5 ever anew.

Does it make more sense now?

In summary: I am a global value investor. It is what fits my personality and my passions. And being able to improve and spread my ideas while getting access to the opinions of highly-skilled investors is, pretty much, Why I Write.

I hope you enjoy and make the most of it.

P.S.: I do have hobbies, thanks for asking! I love running and cycling, and it has done wonders for my health. I also love traveling to discover new places and revisit old favorite spots, enjoying great food and friendships, enjoying my family and (mentioned last but always in first place) my wife.

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