It is amazing how time accelerates as the much-anticipated month/week/day/minute/moment arrives. Planning for the 2020 Investors Conference began on October 27, 2019, and then took the virtual turn in May 2020. Even then, it felt like we were a million minutes away from hosting investors at our 7th Annual Investors Conference. This blog ends the introduction to our agenda and the fantastic speakers/investors that we have brought together in support of kids’ mental health. My father-in-law and late grandmother both love(d) the ponies, but unfortunately the weekly trip to Woodbine Racetrack was a pastime that COVID-19 shut down. Luckily, however, in your mind, you can still feel the electric build of excitement as the horses came around turn three and headed for the back stretch. Similarly, while COVID-19 shut down our physical delivery of the conference, we are just as excited as we turn our attention to the final trio of speakers in our virtual world and bring the audience down the back straight to the FINISH line!
October 22, 2020
2:40 PM – John Ewing, Ewing Morris & Co.
3:00 PM – Maria Jelescu, Ardinall Investment Management
3:20 PM – KEYNOTE: David Rubenstein, The Carlyle Group
3:50 PM – Quentin Broad, Capitalize for Kids
John Ewing and Darcy Morris co-founded the namesake firm Ewing Morris & Co. Investment Partners in 2011. Ewing Morris is a value-driven investment firm that focuses on preservation and growth of capital by focusing on inefficient markets. Fundamental analysis, high conviction and the use of flexible capital is their mode of operation when they invest in the equity and bonds of smaller and mid-sized companies. High conviction comes from doing their homework, evaluating management, and asking themselves “what is our edge over other market participants in any potential investment? And if we don’t feel we have an edge, we don’t invest.” Given the volatility that the markets have experienced in 2020 and the fact the TSX Small Cap index is down 7.3% YTD, there should be many stories to choose from for John’s best idea.
Another Goldman Sachs alumnus hits the stage at 3 pm. Maria Jelescu and her team at Ardinall Investment Management are focused on a low-carbon energy transition strategy. As an investor, Maria believes there is an inextricable link between the challenges our communities are facing with diversity, inclusion, social justice, and our need to deliver a “just” global energy transition. The IEA has suggested that the COVID-19 pandemic has caused more disruption to the energy sector than any other event in recent history, creating a record drop in emissions and leaving impacts that will be felt for years to come. Slowing economic growth is not a solution to emissions management so it will be interesting to hear where Maria believes there are opportunities to make money in the energy transition evolution.
Finally, David Rubenstein will be helping to close out the formal component of our conference. David really doesn’t need an introduction: he co-founded The Carlyle Group in 1987 and has helped it grow to managing over US$220 billion of AUM in corporate private equity, real assets, global credit and investment solutions. Of course, when you grow your firm to hundreds of billions, you make a lot of money for yourself and, on this front, David has committed to the Giving Pledge—to give away the majority of his wealth to address some of society’s most pressing problems. David recently released a book, “How to Lead—Wisdom from the World’s Greatest CEOs, Founders and Game Changers.” On May 14, 2017, in DukeToday – David remarked, “remember that you are on the face of the earth for a relatively short period—a nanosecond—in the several million-year span of humankind. Do not waste that precious time. Do not shrink from the responsibility of trying to make a difference.” We have David for 30 minutes, and we are truly looking forward to him sharing his views on the world in 2020, a presidential race and shining a bright light on great leadership.