Speakers

Investors that presented at the event:

 

Arnaud Verougstraete, Belgavia (Belgium)

Arnaud Verougstraete is managing director of Belgavia, a Belgian holding company.  At Belgavia, he is head of private equity investments and portfolio asset allocation.  He is also involved in investment strategy optimization and exit value. Prior to joining the group, he was worked on strategical and digital projects for Accenture and SAS Institute as well as on several restructuring projects for Aviapartner.  Arnaud graduated cum laude from the Université Catholique de Louvain with a degree in business management, a Master’s degree in Marketing and Advertising from the Solvay Business School and he is a SAS certified professional in data management, business intelligence, and application development.

 

Andrius Jurkonis, Axia Capital Fund (Lithuania)

Andrius is the fund manager of Axia Capital Fund.  He focuses on value-oriented public equities and private investments mostly in the US, Europe, and CEE.  He has been an active manager for over 10 years while previously he held management positions in retail, utilities, commercial and investment banking.  Andrius is a CFA Charterholder while he received his masters and undergraduate degrees from Vilnius University.

 

Bob Robotti, Robotti & Company (U.S.A.)

Robert Robotti is the President and CEO of Robotti & Company. Prior to forming the firm in 1983, Bob was a vice president and shareholder of Gabelli & Company, Inc. He worked in public accounting and is currently an inactive CPA. Bob holds a BS from Bucknell University and an MBA in Accounting from Pace University.  Bob currently serves on the Board of Directors of Panhandle Oil & Gas Company, a NYSE-listed diversified mineral company located in Oklahoma City; as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Pulse Seismic Inc., a seismic data licensing business located in Calgary, Alberta; and was previously on the Board of Directors of BMC Building Materials Holding Corporation, prior to the completion of its merger with Stock Building Supply Holdings, Inc. in 2015. In addition, he serves on the Boards of many non-profit organizations where he generously donates his time and expertise. Previously, Bob was a member of the SEC’s Advisory Committee on Smaller Public Companies, established to examine the impact of Sarbanes-Oxley Act and other aspects of the federal securities law.

 

Charis Charalambous, Active Banking Fund (Cyprus)

Charis Charalambous is currently the fund manager of the Active Banking Sector Fund, an equity fund which invests exclusively in large cap banks in the United States and Western Europe.  Previously he worked for six years for Citigroup in London where he was Vice President of M&A activities in the EMEA region.  At Citigroup, Charis worked on multiple M&A deals with transaction values ranging from $100mn to $6bn. He has also worked in the Treasury Departments of the Bank of Cyprus (London) Ltd and the Cyprus Development Bank Ltd. He holds a B.A. in Economics from Cambridge University, an M.Phil. in Economics from Oxford University and an MBA (with distinction) from London Business School.

 

Christian Freischütz, Value School (Spain)

Christian is a Project Development Director at Value School which disseminates knowledge about investments to the Spanish community.  He has hosted the Value Spain conference since 2015 and has managed Family money in the value way since 2012.  Previously he worked for over 20 years in senior positions in institutional equity sales (Mirabaud Group, Interdin Holdings, BBVA, etc).  He has a bachelor in economics from the Universidad Complutense de Madrid.

 

Christoph Hilfiker, LLB Asset Management (Liechtenstein)

Christoph Hilfiker, born 1970 in Basle, is serving as a senior fund manager with LLB Asset Management AG in Vaduz/Liechtenstein. He’s responsible for the research and the equity management of the Asia Pacific region. After serving as a captain in the Swiss Air Force, he studied business law at the University of St. Gallen (HSG) and completed his education with an MBA at the European Business School.

 

Christopher Detweiler, Veraison Capital (Switzerland)

Dr. Detweiler is a co-founder of Veraison, a Swiss asset manager that runs a focused portfolio of Swiss companies that are undervalued and misunderstood by the capital markets.  In addition to analyzing Swiss Equities, Christopher has four years of experience engaging with European companies to create value through full-scale transformations, as well as targeted strategic, operational and financial projects.  Previously, he was a Project Leader at The Boston Consulting Group (Switzerland) AG, where he worked from 2011-2015 in the Consumer & Industrial Goods practice areas. Prior to that, he began his career analyzing Swiss Equities and macroeconomic trends at Wellershoff & Partners. Christopher has a PhD in Chinese Studies from Freiburg University. He is married and father of three children.

 

Christopher Swasbrook, Elevation Capital (New Zealand)

Christopher Swasbrook is the Managing Director and Founding Shareholder of Elevation Capital.  He was previously a Partner of Goldman Sachs JBWere Pty Limited, Co-Head of Institutional Equities at Goldman Sachs JBWere (NZ) Limited and a Foundation Broker of the New Zealand Exchange Limited (“NZX”) and prior to that an Individual Full Member of the NZ Stock Exchange (“NZSE”). He is currently a member of the NZX Listing Sub-Committee (since 2008) and a member of the NZ Markets Disciplinary Tribunal (since 2013). He is also Chairman of NZX listed – Bethunes Investments Limited [BIL.NZX]. Mr. Swasbrook is independently recognised as a global value investor. He was most recently referenced in a book published on a number of global value investors – “The Manual of Ideas” by John Mihaljevic.  Mr Swasbrook graduated from the University of Auckland with a BCom (Economics) in 1995.

 

Dr. Clemens Bauer, Private Investor (Germany)

Clemens Bauer currently works in the data analytics department of a leading reinsurance company. In his role, he supports new data-driven business models with analytical expertise and the help of big data technology. Previously, he worked in in the field of Intellectual Property and in IT. In his spare time, Clemens became heavily interested in quantitative finance and scientific, evidence-based approaches to value investing. He is eager to see the effect of big data and machine learning on investment strategies. Clemens obtained his PhD in theoretical physics from University of Regensburg, Germany, and further holds a German diploma in business administration.

 

David Kessler, Robotti & Company (U.S.A.)

David Kessler is a Senior Investment Associate with Robotti & Company Advisors, LLC.  Prior to joining Robotti & Company, David was a Research Analyst Consultant with Aquamarine Capital and held portfolio management roles with Rochdale Investment Management and Morgan Stanley.  David received an MBA from Columbia Business School and was a member of Columbia’s Applied Value Investing Program.  As an MBA student, David co-launched Columbia’s first student-run investment newsletter, “Graham and Doddsville.” He also gained valuable experience as a summer intern with Ruane, Cunniff & Goldfarb (Sequoia Fund).   David graduated from the University of Maryland with a B.S. in Finance and Marketing.

 

David Pastel, Pastel & Associés (France)

After five years working as an option trader in France and the US (1985-1990), David had his epiphany when, in the spring of 1992, he started to read his first Berkshire Hathaway’s annual report. He then proceeded to learn how to invest by working for a few years in the investment departments of two French insurance companies, while reading everything he could get his hands on with regard to value investing and financial history. In 1997, he co-founded in Paris with one partner, Pastel & Associés, a value-investment boutique with around $170M in AUM (as of 12/31/2016) through two mutual funds, Margin of Safety Fund (Luxembourg) and Valeur Intrinsèque (France).

 

Demetris Efstathiou, Blue Diagonal Capital (Cyprus)

Demetris is the Chief Investment Officer and co-founder of Blue Diagonal Capital Ltd, a Cyprus based fund manager specialising in emerging markets in fixed income. Demetris has over 20 years of experience working in emerging markets for financial institutions in London – 15 years as a trader and portfolio manager of EM credit, foreign exchange, and interest rates, followed by 5 years as head of EM strategy and research. He was head of the CEEMEA fixed income proprietary trading desk at Morgan Stanley, London before becoming a portfolio manager at Argo Capital, a London based hedge fund. Subsequently, Demetris served as head of cross-asset strategy covering EM/CEEMEA credit, currencies and interest rates at RBS Global Markets, London, and later as head of EM Trading Strategy at ICBC Standard Bank, London. Demetris is also currently serving on the board of directors of Hellenic Bank, Cyprus as an independent, non-executive director.  Demetris is a holder of a B.Eng. in Information Systems Engineering from Imperial College London, and of an MBA with concentration in Finance from London Business School.

 

Diego Moreno, Forum Family Office (Germany)

Diego is an Investment Associate at Forum Family Office, an investment company based in Munich, Germany. Forum Family Office manages the wealth of a German industrial family and has returned 17% p.a. since its inception 25 years ago. Forum also advises a fund for institutional investors under the same value investing, long-term oriented philosophy.  Previously, Diego held various management positions in the aerospace and automotive industries. During this period, he also studied and applied the value investing principles in the management of his private wealth before deciding to become a professional investor. He holds a MSc. in Industrial Engineering by the University of Zaragoza (Spain) and a BSc. in Economics and Management by the LSE/UoL (UK). Diego speaks Spanish, English, German and French.

 

Dominic Fisher, Thistledown Investment Management (U.K.)

Dominic has been investing since 1989. He trained at Hambros Bank, joining Mercury Asset Management in 1992. There he led the charities team which successfully resisted the pressure to invest in a ‘new era’ during the dotcom boom.  He established Thistledown in 2009 and has managed the VT Thistledown Income Fund since its inception in 2010.
He was awarded the OBE in 2015 for his charitable work for armed forces personnel and is currently a mentor for “Supporting Wounded Veterans”. He is a director of Aberforth Split Level Income Trust Plc. and a founder member of the Value Investors Special Interest Group of the CFA Society of the UK.

 

Evan Tindall, Bireme Capital (U.S.A.)

Evan is the Chief Investment Officer of Bireme Capital, a performance-focused wealth management firm he co-founded in 2016. Previously he was the sole equity analyst at Ballentine Capital, a Connecticut based long-short hedge fund. Before joining Ballentine Capital Evan was a professional poker player, winning a total of more than $1,000,000 and finishing tenth at a European Poker Tour event in 2008 for $104,000. He graduated from MIT with a BS in Mechanical Engineering in 2007.

 

Evgenii Mitiukov, FFF Asset Management (Cyprus)

Evgenii joined FFF Asset Management in 2017 where he is responsible for bonds portfolios.  In 2014—2016 Evgenii was an investment analyst at SBD Global Fund where he covered global macro strategies.  He started his career in 2013 at the fixed income desk at Credit Suisse in Moscow.  Evgenii has a BSc in Banking and Finance from the University of London which he attended with a full scholarship and graduated with first-class honours.   Evgenii is a CFA Charterholder.

 

Florentzos Kassoumis, FAMco (Cyprus)

Florentzos Kassoumis is founder and CEO of FAMco, a financial intermediary firm which puts fundamentals first.  A value investor with over twenty years of experience in asset management and advisory services, Florentzos currently supervises the wealth management and financing activities for private clients.  Previously Florentzos was Head of Wealth and Asset Management at WSFIS Ltd, while he held positions at Sharelink Securities & Financial Services Ltd, as Head of Asset Management, CDB Bank and Hellenic Bank as Analyst, while he was also an advisor to the Government of Cyprus.  He has a BSc and MSc. (Government of Cyprus scholarship) in finance from the University of Cyprus and is a recipient of several awards in Investment Games and Projects.

 

Harvey Sawikin, Firebird Management (U.S.A.)

Co-founded Firebird in 1994. He is a lead manager of Firebird’s Eastern Europe and Russia funds. He also serves on the Management Boards of the Amber private equity funds. Before founding Firebird, he was a clerk on the U.S. Court of Appeals and an M&A specialist at the prominent law firm of Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz. Harvey is a graduate of Columbia University (Magna Cum Laude) and Harvard Law School (Cum Laude), where he was an editor of the Harvard Law Review. He is a member of the New York State Bar. Harvey serves on the board of PR Foods (Estonia) and is a Trustee of Churchill School and a member of the Visiting Committee of the Department of Photographs of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

 

Hendrik Michels, Valuelize (Germany)

Hendrik is the founder and managing director of Valuelize GmbH & Co. KG, which was founded at the end of 2014 and is a Berlin-based private investment company that focuses on small- and mid-caps from Germany, Switzerland, Austria and, lately also large caps from other regions.
Before founding Valuelize, Hendrik studied business administration and engineering and worked as a sales manager for a technology company. In addition, he has finished the Certified European Financial Analyst program.

 

Joe Dowling, Invesco Perpetual (U.K.)

Based in Henley-on-Thames, Joe is an Analyst for Invesco Perpetual’s Global Opportunities Strategy. The Fund holds 35-40 stocks across countries, sectors and market caps. All 3 team members are generalist across sectors and geographies. The average holding period since inception is over 3 years.  Prior to joining Invesco, Joe worked in M&A at an accountancy firm. Before becoming an analyst for the Global Opportunities Strategy he was responsible for providing investment research for the Global Income and Global Smaller Companies funds. Joe holds a BSc in Business Administration from the University of Bath and the Investment Management Certificate from the CFA Society of the UK.

 

John Zolidis, Quo Vadis Capital (U.S.A.)

John Zolidis is the Founder and President of Quo Vadis Capital, Inc.  Mr. Zolidis formed Quo Vadis in 2017 to provide high-quality research on the restaurant and retail industries for institutional investors as well as consulting services to companies in the industries.  Previous to founding Quo Vadis, Mr. was a sell-side analyst at Buckingham Research covering retail and restaurants.  Mr. Zolidis also served as a buy-side consumer analyst at Buckingham Capital Management, a long-short hedge fund.  He was with Buckingham since 2001.  He was added to the Wall Street Journal’s “Best on the Street” list in 2005 for the Specialty Stores category.  Prior to Buckingham, he got his start on Wall Street at Sidoti & Co. and Morgan Stanley.  His undergraduate studies were at Mansfield College, Oxford and Kenyon College where he graduated with a degree in Philosophy.  Mr. Zolidis currently resides in Paris, France with his wife and two daughters.

 

Loucas Demetriou, Totalpro (Cyprus)

Loucas is the founder of Totalpro Services Ltd, an Administrative Service Provider licensed by the CySEC.  Totalpro offers incorporation and administration, accounting, legal, and investment firm and fund services.   Loucas spent over 12 years as Executive Director, risk manager, and head of middle and back office of Argo Capital Management, an award-winning London based emerging markets hedge fund.  Previously, he worked as a broker, investment consultant and financial analyst in the brokerage industry.  Loucas is a licensed Insolvency Practitioner, holds an MA degree in Finance from the University of Manchester and a BSc in Economics from Athens University of Economics and Business.

 

Michalis Florentiades, XM (Cyprus)

Michalis Florentiades is the Chief Economist and Head of Investment Research for XM, an online financial services company.  He began his career in London as a Financial Economist before returning to Cyprus and Hellenic Bank where he was Head of Research.  At Hellenic, he wrote the book “Economic Review of 2004-2011”; a collection of research articles on Cyprus and the Global Economy during that period.  Mr. Florentiades has a BSc in Economics from the London School of Economics (LSE), Master’s degree in Mathematical Trading and Finance from the City University Business School and is a CFA Charterholder.

  

Ole Søeberg, Nordic Investment Partners (Denmark)

Ole founded Nordic Investment Partners in 2017 and offers investment advice to family trusts.  A fund run by Ole and with absolute return focus is planned to be launched later in 2018.  He began his career in 1984 when he founded Dansk Aktie Analyse (independent research boutique in Copenhagen).  In 1985 he worked for Privatbanken in international equities.  In the 1990’s he was head of international equities in Denmark for Carnegie and Alfred Berg.  He worked as head of Investor relations for Denmark’s TDC (1999-2005) and Tryg Insurance (2006-2010).  From 2011-17 he was fund manager and Chief Investment Officer in Skagen funds, Norway.  Ole has an MBA from Copenhagen Business School.

 

Paolo Veneziani, Vidya Capital (Italy)

Paolo manages a small private family investment company, Vidya Capital.  He started to invest with a value oriented approach (mostly focalizing on high quality companies) in the early 90’s, after he learned about Warren Buffett and Value Investing. He became a full time investor in 2013.  Opportunities are sourced mostly in Europe and the US, and are sector and size agnostic.  Previously Paolo has been an executive in the Pharmaceutical industry in the US, UK and Italy and then a senior partner at Egon Zehnder, one of the largest Executive Search and Management Consulting Firms in the world.  He holds an MBA from Columbia Business School and an undergraduate degree in Economics from the University of Rome.

 

Piet Ysabie, Family Fund (Belgium)

Piet started investing in 1998 and manages family and private client capital. He employs a systematic approach using an optimized mix of value parameters.  He likes the IT side of the investment approach and developed the ICT (Information and Communication Technology) needed to support the approach. He is also the founder and managing director of an ICT consultancy business. Previously he worked as a consultant helping blue chip companies in Europe and the US setup major projects in market settlement and clearing. Mr. Ysabie graduated from the University of Leuven in 1990 with a Master’s degree in engineering.

 

Pasi Havia, Helsinki Partners (Finland)

Pasi works for Helsinki Capital Partners (HCP), which is one of the fastest growing asset managers in Finland.  In 2016, HCP received Fund Manager of The Year Finland reward from The European.  Pasi is a Portfolio Manager of the HCP Quant fund, a global small and mid-cap quantitative value fund. It uses systematic, quantitative and statistical methods to identify stocks that are undervalued, by using financial modelling. Pasi’s personal blog was ranked the second most popular economic blog in Finland in 2011 and 2014. He is also a co-author of a best-selling personal finance book in Finland.

 

Pavel Begun, 3G Capital Management LLC (Canada)

Pavel co-founded 3G Capital a concentrated value investment fund manager. He has over sixteen years of experience in value investing and is a board member of AlarmForce Industries Inc. (Canadian listed USA residential alarm company) and a director at Grafenia PLC (UK listed short-run on-demand printer). Pavel has an M.B.A. from the University of Chicago and is a Chartered Financial Analyst. He has been a guest speaker at a number of universities and also at various investing conferences since 2001.

 

Raman Minhas, Private Fund (U.K.)

Manages a small private fund which focuses on Growth At Reasonable Price (GARP) and value. Opportunities are sourced from US and UK, and are sector and size agnostic. He is a contributor to SumZero, Gurufocus and Seeking Alpha. Previously an ER doctor and life sciences analyst.

 

Samir Mohamed, Family Fund (Switzerland)

Samir started with value investing in 1999 and manages a private family fund, full time, for the last few years. He focuses on good businesses with temporary problems and suppressed stock prices.   Samir enjoys collaborating with other value investors regularly via in-person meetings or Skype calls.   Samir was global head of the product management teams of a € 170m industrial business at Siemens.  He worked at Siemens for 13 years.  He has a master’s degree in Management, Technology, and Economics and a bachelor’s degree in material science, both from ETH Zurich.   He recently relocated from Switzerland to Cyprus.

 

Simon Caufield, SIM Limited (U.K.)

Simon has been a professional investor since 2007 and manages family capital and has a private client advisory business. He specialises in deep value, cyclical and cheap compounders in the industrial, consumer discretionary and non-bank financial sectors. He is an active member of the value investing special interest group of the CFA in the UK and a regular visitor to value investing events.

 

Sergey Arinin, Private Investor (Russia)

Sergey manages his own money on a full-time basis.  Previously he worked as an equity analyst for various investment companies with a presence in Russia including J.P.Morgan, UBS and Unicredit from 2001 to 2016.  Sergey graduated from Higher School of Economics (Moscow).

 

Sophocles Sophocleous, FatAlpha (Cyprus)

A Fulbright scholar and Chartered Financial Analyst, he currently manages institutional money based on his proprietary equity strategy (known as FatAlpha) which combines quantitative value methods with qualitative analysis.  Sophocles also teaches an applied course on investments at the Cyprus International Institute of Management.  He spent over 11 years with London-based EM fund manager Argo Capital Management as Executive Director.  Previously, he was employed in the brokerage and the investment banking industry.  Sophocles graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a double major in Economics and Finance.

 

Steve Gorelik, Firebird Management (U.S.A.)

Steve is a Portfolio Manager with Firebird Management, a value-oriented asset manager with over 20 years of experience investing in the Eastern European and North American markets. Steve’s investment experience includes both public and private equity investments in Eastern Europe with a particular focus on Baltic Countries, Romania, Georgia and banks across the whole region. Steve is also lead portfolio manager of Firebird U.S. Value Fund. Steve is a graduate of Value Investing Program at Columbia University Graduate School of Business and is a CFA (chartered financial analyst).

 

Tim du Toit, Serendipity Ventures (Germany)

Tim du Toit was born in South Africa in 1967 and moved to Germany in 2001.  In between he completed a B. Com. Hons. and MBA (Indiana USA) degree, worked in banking and asset management in South Africa and Germany for 15 years.  Since 2010 he manages his own money, writes investment newsletters (focus on Europe) and started an investment screening service (www.quant-investing.com).

 

Thomas Roland Hartl, Private Investor (U.K.)

Thomas Hartl has been with Morgan Stanley since 1998. He is a Managing Director based in London and Head of Real Estate Asset Management Europe. Thomas graduated in 1998 in business administration from University of St Gallen, Switzerland.

 

Past presenters for publicly listed companies:

 

Dr. Christos Patsalides, Bank of Cyprus (Cyprus)

Dr. Patsalides currently serves as Deputy CEO and COO of the Bank of Cyprus and is also an Executive member of the Board of Directors.  From 1989 to 1996, Dr.Patsalides worked for the Central Bank of Cyprus in the Management of Government External Debt and Foreign Exchange Reserves Department. In 1996, Dr. Patsalides joined the Bank of Cyprus where he has held a number of positions in corporate banking, treasury and private banking, among others, and acted as Finance Director from December 2013 to April 2016.  He holds a PhD in Economics from the London School of Economics.

 

Demos Anastassiou, Logicom (Cyprus)
Group Planning and Development Manager