Collectors Universe: The Poor Man’s Moody’s

April 15, 2016 Moats 21 Comments

Collector’s Universe (CLCT) is the kind of company value investors profess to love.  After all, it ticks most of the boxes on a value investor’s checklist.  It is a microcap[1] with years and years of reliable cash flow.  It has…

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“Welcome to Adult Life”: American Express, Synchrony Financial & the Changing Credit Card Landscape

March 8, 2016 Moats 22 Comments

Two years ago, I investigated the moat around American Express’s (AXP) business.  I assessed the moat as wide and identified a positive feedback loop at the heart of it.  The loop ran like this: Spending on Amex cards is higher…

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OnDeck Capital (ONDK) & The Re-Engineering of Small Business Lending

January 19, 2016 Moats 5 Comments

Jamie Dimon, the chief executive of JPMorgan Chase, warned in his 2014 annual shareholder letter in 2015 that "Silicon Valley is coming" for banking's bread and butter. It was a pivotal moment, because traditional banks are deep-pocketed monsters with large…

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Interactive Brokers Group (IBKR)

December 10, 2014 Moats 25 Comments

[slideshare id=42564705&doc=ibkr-141210075211-conversion-gate01]   [polldaddy poll=8513536]

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Blackbaud: A Wonderful Little Niche

September 26, 2013 Moats 3 Comments

This is the first of what I hope will be a series of articles on the software industry.  Why?  Quite simply, the software industry possesses very attractive economics.  The first company we will look at is Blackbaud, Inc. (BLKB). Blackbaud…

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