Horizons Newsletter – week 52 // 2020 – Holiday Edition

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At Dasym, we strive to connect the dots in order to find great investment ideas that go beyond market consensus. Reading, listening and viewing thought-provoking pieces of content facilitates that process. For this Holiday Season edition of the Horizons, we have asked our colleagues to share some of their sources of inspiration with us.

The Investors’ Sources

To select the companies that will benefit directly or indirectly from the introduction of new technologies in our daily lives, the Dasym Public Markets team processes a lot of information. Interviews of inspiring people are often found on their reading and listening lists. Portfolio Manager Yentl Blom praises the way Spotify founder Daniel Ek structures his thoughts. This interview provides insight in how Ek works and thinks. Investment Associate Sander Dassen, meanwhile, recommends a podcast interview with Herman Peterscheck. Peterscheck started his career as game developer at Riot, but now manages investment company Hypernormal Capital. In the podcast he relates several very original ideas, for instance about unique IP companies such as Nintendo, Disney and Games Workshop. Another podcast tip from Sander is Coffee with the greats, where host Miles Fisher speaks with successful business leaders on what it means “to be great.” In addition to podcasts, an increasing number of free or low-priced but high-quality substack newsletters complement and sometimes (partly) replace the daily dose of broker research. Our tips:

At the Crossroads of Technology and Hegemony

Dasym invests in companies at the intersection of technology, hegemony and social cultural changes, topics that are explored in the books and podcasts we list here. Technology, for instance, affects the way we interact with each other and is one of the reasons we are losing our listening skills. In the book, You’re not Listening, recommended by Laura van der Ham, head of the Research team, Kate Murphy explains the secrets to better listening. If you enjoy good listening material, researcher Daniel Lanting suggests the investigative podcast Wind of Change. This podcast unravels the mystery of the claim that the CIA was involved in the release of the 1990 hit song Wind of Change by the German band the Scorpions in order to spur on the fall of the Soviet Union. For a deeper dive into the political warfare between Russia and the U.S., CIO Peter van Rooyen recommends reading The Folly and the Glory. Peter was impressed by the vulnerability of democracy unveiled by this book. Investment associate Sander Dassen enjoyed reading Out of the Gobi, a memoir of one of Asia’s best-known financiers, Weijian Shan, about growing up during the Chinese Cultural Revolution and escaping from a hopeless existence.

Watching during the Lockdown

With several countries around the globe experiencing yet another lockdown, we have made a selection of our favorite TV-shows and albums to add to your watch and listening list. The documentary series Drive to Survive, about the drivers and races of the 2018 and 2019 Formula One World Championship gives an insightful look into this competitive sport. Thrills and excitement of competition can also be experienced in The Queens Gambit. The series portrays an orphaned female chess prodigy competing with elite, male-dominated, chess players internationally. If you like more tension, Pim Korsten, member of the Freedomlab Thinktank, recommends the Netflix’ series Dark, a German science fiction series about time travel. Dark raises a host of philosophical issues keep that you questioning your own beliefs. Much closer to reality is The Social Dilemma, a documentary suggested by researcher Petra Berendrecht. It explores how social media companies use algorithms to encourage addiction. Sander Dassen, finally, recommends the album Punisher from Phoebe Bridgers. It was released during the worldwide quarantine last June. Since her tour was cancelled, she turned to video for promotions.