Speakers

Asset managers that presented at past events:

 

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.

 

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.

 

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

David Kessler is a Senior Investment Associate with Robotti & Company Advisors, LLC.  Prior to joining the firm in 2009, he was a Research Analyst Consultant with Aquamarine Capital (Guy Spier’s firm) and a Portfolio Management Associate with Rochdale Investment Management. David received a BS in Finance and Marketing from the University of Maryland and an MBA from Columbia Business School where he was a member of Columbia’s Applied Value Investing Program.

 

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).

 

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.

 

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.

 

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.

 

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.  In addition, he is a global deep value investor, with the exception of financial services which he avoids.  Samir enjoys collaborating with other value investors regularly via in-person meetings or Skype calls.  Previously he worked for industrial companies in market research, innovation and product management.

 

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.

 

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 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).

 

Other professionals that presented at past events:

 

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

 

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.  He is also the Risk Manager of SKDA Capital ltd, a Cyprus real estate fund.  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.