I recently attended the memorial service for Jake Millar, the founder of Unfiltered, who took his own life in November 2021.
I was not just an investor in Unfiltered, but someone who was also a friend of his. The day after his memorial service, I shared a number of thoughts about Jake and his untimely passing on LinkedIn. (click through)
Rest In Peace Jake.
I like Sharesies. If it encourages people to get involved in investing, it can only be a good thing. But lately, I've seen a few people on the Sharesies Facebook forum make comments like "Why have my shares gone down????? 😞😞😞", as if it was somehow wrong or inexplicable.
As a more seasoned investor, I thought I would help the forum with some thoughts.
I've had the pleasure of being an active share investor for a number of years now, and I thought I'd add some food for thought for some Sharesies investors here, as I've noticed a few have been worried whenever there is a "down day", asking questions like "why are my shares going down?".
Last Friday, I concluded the greatest journey of my life - my investment journey in Pushpay. Over the course of last week, I exited the last of my stake with the share price at record highs, on the back of a superb annual result.
Our family invested in Pushpay in March 2014, not long after Peter and Chris Huljich made their first investment in late 2013. I recall meeting Chris Heaslip and Elliot Crowther at their Glenfield offices in February 2014 - threadbare carpets, lack of space and tired surrounds, and found myself instantly liking them and their pitch. They had clarity about the problem they solved, and size and scope of the opportunity ahead of them.
Our family made our first investment shortly after that meeting, and followed up with heavy participation in subsequent raises, becoming Pushpay’s biggest non-insider investor.
This is a post I’ve been looking forward to for a few months now.
Auckland has been great to the Bhatnagar family since we arrived from Canada in 1980.
We’ve prospered in business over two generations, been heavily involved in both political and social circles, and now we are the happy position of giving back to great causes with philanthropy.
On December 11 1997, Mara and I had our first date at the Auckland Art Gallery.
We continued the tradition of art gallery visits, and on December 11 2004, Mara and I hosted our wedding reception in what is now the old wing of the Auckland Art Gallery.
As an Auckland City Councillor between 2007-2010, I was a strong supporter of the Auckland Art Gallery’s modernising and enlarging.
Which brings us to today: December 11, 2019.
Today, Mara and I are celebrating our 15th wedding anniversary by announcing our joining the Auckland Art Gallery Foundation as “Governors”. We have committed to a substantial philanthropic contribution to the Gallery, and have also joined our three boys up as “members”, perhaps in the hope that the Art Gallery might make a nice place for them to hang out with girlfriends in future years. Our names have gone up on the wall in great company with other generous Aucklanders.
While we love to give to Auckland related causes, the Auckland Art Gallery is an especially sentimental choice for us given its strong connection to the starting of our own family, and our own interests in collecting art.
If you haven’t been to Te Toi O Tamaki lately, get there - you will love this jewel in Auckland’s crown. The current Colin McCahon exhibition "A Place to Paint" (curated by Ron Brownson) runs to the 20th of January next year, and is unmissable for Aucklanders.
Recently, I've been asked a number of times about what books I'm reading or podcasts I'm listening to. I have typed them up and published them online here, but thought it might be useful to also reference them as a blog post as well.
My favourite books are mostly about business, and most viewed through the prism of "value investing", or buying assets cheaper than their intrinsic worth. Value investing was "invented" by Dr Benjamin Graham, a noted investor but also famous for being the Professor of the University of Columbia's School of Business that taught Warren Buffett. Others on the list are about behaviour - optimising the size of the investment for risk, contrarian investing (also put as "zigging while others zag"), as well as more recent metrics focused books.
Here they are:
Books (all links go the book's page on Amazon.com)
Podcasts (all links to Apple Podcasts)
Click here to watch the interview at Unfiltered, posted 18 January 2019
The following interview was done in September of 2018 and posted publicly on January 2019. It may be of help to entrepreneurs seeking to understand the mindset of early stage high growth investors.
Key takeouts from the interview:
Aaron Bhatnagar Unfiltered Interview January 2019
First posted on Facebook, 18 October 2018
Given recent political news over “the Cathedral Club”, I’d like to note that it was an informal pay-your-own-way dinner club that started in 2001, comprised of a small group of Young Nats and old friends from university days. It met in the Cathedral Room of the old Auckland Club, which had pictures of NZ churches and cathedrals on the wall. I know this because I was a regular dinner attendee and one of the organisers. The last dinner was probably around 2008.
Posted originally on Facebook, 24/11/2017
Auckland has been very kind to our family, so it’s nice to be able to give something back. This evening, the Bhatnagar family unveiled “The Sir Roger Bhatnagar collection” of sporting memorabilia at the Bert Sutcliffe Lounge, Eden Park. Dad collected some impressive sports memorabilia back in the day, and so we helped pay for Auckland Cricket’s Lounge renovations, and they have helped find a home for a unique snapshot of NZ’s cricket history in the 1980s and 1990s.
We are delighted and honoured to have an old friend of Dad’s, the Deputy Prime Minister Rt Hon Winston Peters, to open the collection and renovated lounge. Also present were many of Dad’s old friends from his business days so it was quite a wonderful catchup as well. Many thanks also to Auckland Cricket, in particular Nicholas Albrecht, (board member) and Erin Nurkka (marketing manager) for making this happen.
I was one of the larger individual investors in Hellaby Holdings when the company received a takeover offer from Bapcor Holdings, an Australian autoparts company. The initial offer was met with a lukewarm response by most investors as well as the board of Hellaby. As an activist investor, I engaged publicly to put pressure on an increase by Bapcor for their buyout offer, which duly happened in January of 2017. Bapcor's second offer was met with support by myself and other shareholders, successfully buying Hellaby Holdings.
This is the post I made on LinkedIn at the time, which was duly picked up by NZ business reporters.