What's On Your Mind, Mr. Buffett ? 2017

"Like most things in life, you generate luck for yourself; it's a true cliche"

Michael van Biema on his investment style, picking fund managers, and his take on India

Published 4 years ago on Jun 13, 2017 18 minutes Read
Photographs by N Mahalakshmi

From the Fifth Avenue office building of van Biema Value Partners, Central Park is within walking distance. For Michael van Biema though, his day job is hardly a walk in the park. His firm looks for talented investment managers to deploy client capital. To do that, he travels all around the world. In fact, he has just returned from a trip to Japan. van Biema has been there and seen it all. Starting off as a technology entrepreneur, van Biema had a notable stint as a professor of value investing from 1992 to 2004 at Columbia Business School, the very place where Warren Buffett graduated from, after chasing Ben Graham there. In 2004, he capitalised on his teaching experience and set up his own value investment advisory firm by roping in notable investors. He has also co-authored two books, Value Investing: From Graham to Buffett and Beyond in 2001, and Concentrated Investing just last year. In an interaction with Outlook Business, van Biema talks about why a disciplined approach is imperative in value investing and why only few make that cut.