Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Adventure Capitalist

Multiple meetings and calls today. VIP tour of our manufacturing and config centre this morning. This part of our business is a competitive advantage. It is an area where our costs and capabilities really shine. My hope is to close some larger deals to make that area really hum.

I finished one of the books I started on the weekend called Adventure Capitalism by Jim Rogers. It is an awesome book. More like a novel or travel narration in many ways than a business book. This makes it slightly slower reading. Jim, and his wife Paige, drive around the world in a modified Mercedes. He comments on the business environment and economy of the countries he visits. Part of what makes the book interesting is the stories he tells of their experiences. He is a natural story teller.

He is a big believer in free trade and open borders and cites numerous examples of countries with open (or closed) borders that prosper (or whither). For example, Burma was a wealthy country which closed its borders in 1962 – it is now a disaster. Same for Ghana, the wealthiest country in the British empire in the 50’s(ever wealthier than England) which closed it borders in 1957. Seven years later it was bankrupt.

He has a view is that handouts to countries create dependency and slow self reliance. This is similar to a view taken in one of my favourite books The Millionaire Next Door to handouts to our children..

Trade tariffs (or things like the beef embargo) act as an inefficient tax on the citizens of a country. The citizens pay more for their products which allow local producers to make a bit more profit. This creates a laziness and inefficiency in the local producers that cause them to not be competitive on a world scale. Interesting view.

His view on India differs from The World is Flat (see June 19th post). Good on the ground R and D.

Adventure Capitalism is a great book and good recreational read.


At 1:46 PM, Blogger Unknown said...

I was asking a friend of mine, which Barron's book to start with: Economy or Finance, and he said: "oh, don't! you will never come back to finance if you do! read better the Adventure Capitalist, please!"

Now, after your review I found it in ebook format and am about to download! :-)) Thanks!


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