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Guest Speakers

Presentations from leading value investors enhance the value investing skills that are taught in both the Ivey’s Value Investing program as well as the Value Investing and the Search for Value Seminars. Our speaker series allow students the opportunity to see value investors in action.

Practitioners’ involvement in the program is organized in two parts: First, practitioners present their basic approach to value investing and discuss their style; second, they take students through actual investment decisions. This includes decisions to purchase securities, and how large a position to take, or decisions not to purchase securities. Time is allowed at the end for open-ended student questions.

This page also features presentations from the keynote speakers at the Centre's Value Investing Conferences that cover broad areas of interest to the value investing community and to our students.

Upcoming Guest Speakers

Chairman and CEO, Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd., Toronto, ON, Canada (April 15, 2021 - Virtual Fairfax Annual Meeting of Shareholders)

Mr. Watsa, Chairman and CEO, Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd. has invited Dr. Athanassakos and a group of his Value Investing MBA and HBA students to attend the Fairfax annual meeting of shareholders on Thursday, April 15, 2021 at 9:30 a.m. in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. After the annual meeting, students will have an opportunity to meet Mr. Watsa and his team. Mr. Watsa is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd., a financial services holding company, which he took over in 1985. The company, through its subsidiaries, is engaged in property and casualty insurance and reinsurance, as well as investment management. Mr. Watsa is a Chartered Financial Analyst, a graduate of the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology with a degree in Chemical Engineering and a holder of an MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business of the University of Western Ontario. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Hospital for Sick Children, a member of the Advisory Board for the Richard Ivey School of Business and a member of the Board of Directors of the Royal Ontario Museum Foundation, as well as Chairman of the Investment Committee of St. Paul’s Anglican Church.  Fairfax has been one of the few companies to escape the ravages of the great recession of 2008 as Mr. Watsa and his team had anticipated the credit crisis and had taken the necessary steps to protect Fairfax. Mr. Watsa, also known as the Buffett of the North, had discussed his fears about the markets in a key note speech he gave to The Ben Graham Center of Value Investing First Annual Symposium on Value Investing on May 25, 2007. His key note speech can be viewed here.

For more on Fairfax Financial Holdings Ltd., see www.fairfax.ca

ChouFounder and President, Chou Associates Management Inc., Toronto, ON, Canada (July 30, 2021 -- Seminar on Value Investing and the Search for Value)

Mr. Chou is the President of the Toronto-based Chou Associates Management Inc. Mr. Chou, a CFA, ended his formal education at Grade 12. While working as a technician for a phone company in 1981, he started an investment club that would later become the Associates fund. Mr. Chou has operated two of the country’s most successful funds, Chou Associates Fund and Chou RRSP fund, for the last 20 years. In 2005, the Canadian Investment Award named him the fund manager of the decade. His approach is to “find bargains and maintain discipline; if you cannot find bargains stay in cash”. Currently (2012), Mr. Chou manages more than $650 million for investors in his firm and runs the best performing bond fund in North America according to a Wall Street Journal article. The financial media have extensively covered Francis’ style, performance and character over the years. A media article on Francis can be read here.

For more on Chou Associates Management Inc., see www.choufunds.com/associates.html

BrentonChief Executive Officer and Co-Founder, Turtle Creek Asset Management, Toronto, ON, Canada (January 20, 2022, Ivey Business School, Room 1100, 6:20pm to 8:00pm) 

Mr. Brenton is the CEO and a co-founder of Turtle Creek Asset Management, a Toronto-based independent investment management firm that invests in publically listed equities. Turtle Creek is focused on long term capital growth for a clientele of high net worth individuals, families and institutions and has an exceptional 15 year investment track record. Previously, Mr. Brenton founded and was the CEO of the private equity subsidiary of The Bank of Nova Scotia where he invested $300 million in control positions of a dozen Canadian mid-market private companies. In the early 1990's, Mr. Brenton was head of the high technology investment banking practice of Scotia Capital and prior to that, he was a founding member and Managing Director in the firm’s mergers and acquisitions practice. Mr. Brenton joined McLeod Young Weir (the predecessor to Scotia Capital) in 1984. Mr. Brenton received his MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business (University of Western Ontario) in 1984 and his B.Sc. from Mount Allison University in 1980.

For more on Turtle Creek Asset Management, see www.turtlecreek.ca

Portfolio Manager, Robotti & Company Advisors LLC., New York, NY, USA (February 10, 2022, Ivey Business School, Room 1100, 6:20pm to 8:00pm) 

Prior to joining Robotti & Company Advisors, Mr. Jensen was employed by Third Avenue Management in various roles, including Chief Investment Officer (“CIO”), Co-CIO, portfolio manager and senior analyst from 1995 to 2014. Mr. Jensen co-managed the Third Avenue Small Cap Value Fund from its inception in 1997 until 2001 when he was named sole manager of the Fund. Mr. Jensen oversaw the firm’s “small cap” strategy, which advised as much as $4 billion of client assets. From 2003 until 2009, Mr. Jensen also served as Co-Chief Investment Officer, along with the firm’s founder, Martin Whitman, until being named sole CIO in January of 2010. At its peak, Third Avenue managed more than $28 billion of client assets across five strategies. Mr. Jensen was a member of the firm’s management and risk committees and oversaw the recruiting and mentoring of more than 30 members of the firm’s research team. During his tenure at Third Avenue Mr. Jensen was a member of the nominating committee of the Board of Directors at Investor AB, Sweden’s leading industrial holding company. In 1999, he was awarded the Richard L. Rosenthal award for Innovation in Investment Management / Corporate Finance. From 1989 to 1993, Mr. Jensen held the role of Chief Operating Officer at Ciao Bella Gelato, an award-winning manufacturer and distributor of frozen dessert products that was sold to a private-equity firm. From 1984 to 1989 Mr. Jensen held various corporate finance positions, including Assistant Vice President at Manufacturers Hanover Trust Company. Mr. Jensen holds a BA in Economics from Williams College and an MBA from Yale University School of Management.

For more on Robotti & Company Advisors LLC, see https://advisors.robotti.com/

John Phelan

Managing Partner and Co-Founder of MSD Capital, L.P., Managing Partner and Co-Founder of MSD Partners, L.P., New York, NY, USA (March 10, 2022, Ivey Business School, Room 1100, 6:20pm to 8:00pm) *Due to covid-19, this presentation that was originally slated for March 9, 2021, is now rescheduled for March 10, 2022. 

Mr. Phelan is the Co-Founder and Managing Partner of MSD Capital, L.P. He is also the Co-Founder and Managing Partner of MSD Partners, L.P. Prior to forming MSD Capital, he was a Principal for seven years at ESL Partners, a Greenwich, Connecticut-based investment firm. At ESL, Mr. Phelan was responsible for ESL's Special Situation and Distressed Investments and helped grow the firm from $50 million to over $2 billion in assets under management. Prior to ESL, Mr. Phelan was a Vice President in the Equity Group and was in charge of Acquisitions (Western Region) for the Zell-Merrill Lynch Real Estate Opportunity Funds. He began his career at Goldman, Sachs & Co., where he worked as an Analyst in the Investment Banking Division. Mr. Phelan received his M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and graduated Phi Beta Kappa and cum laude with distinction from Southern Methodist University with a B.A. in Economics and Political Science. Mr. Phelan also holds a General Course degree with an emphasis in Economics and International Relations from The London School of Economics. Mr. Phelan is a member of the Board of Trustees at the Whitney Museum of Art, Aspen Art Museum (Chairman), Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (Chairman of the Investment Committee), Spirit of America and Third Option Foundation. He also serves on the Board of Dean's Advisors for the Harvard Business School, the Investment Committee for the SMU Endowment and the North American Advisory Board for the London School of Economics. Mr. Phelan and his wife Amy have sponsored numerous fellowships and scholarships at Harvard Business School, London School of Economics and Southern Methodist University and in 2008 permanently endowed free admission to the Aspen Art Museum.

For more on MSD Capital, see www.msdcapital.com

Past Guest Speakers