June 19, 2008

Half of Sovereign-Wealth Fund Deals Involve Majority Stakes

As noted in this recent WSJ article, according to a recent Monitor Group study, half of the investments by sovereign wealth funds since 2000 involved a more than 50% interest. 37% involved stakes between 10% and 50% and only 13% involved investments of less than 10%.

There were 420 deals during this eight-year period – only 14 of them in wealthy nations, worth abut $9.4 billion, involved majority stakes in companies in such politically sensitive areas as energy, utilities, information technology, telecommunications and financial services.

Here is a copy of the study – and here is a quote from this Reuters article: “Heightened national security concerns over strategic investing by sovereign wealth funds appear to be overblown, a new study released on Friday found. The study, conducted by consulting firm Monitor Group, found that the bulk of SWF investing appears to be aimed at furthering the economic development of a host or allied country, not acquiring sensitive strategic or economic assets to advance political aims of a state.”

Winning the World Series: Cubs Worth More? Or Less?

Here is a recent interview with an economist about how much more the Chicago Cubs would be worth if they won the World Series this year (they are red hot and it’s been 100 years since they last won).

The interview is short and perhaps not complete – but in my opinion, the Cubs would be worth less in the long run if they won. Part of their national mystique is that they are perennial losers. “Maybe next year” is their mantra. As someone who grew up down the street from Wrigley Field at a time when they “had it in the bag” – the late ’60s/early ’70s – I don’t want to see the streak end…

Closing Time: When the Founder is Ready to Sell

We have posted the transcript for the webcast: “Closing Time: When the Founder is Ready to Sell.”