We are pleased to announce the Winners, Runners-Up, and Honorable Mentions for the second leg of the FactSet Top Idea Tournament, the Best Short contest.
We would like to thank everyone who participated, including the judges panel, as well as our partner FactSet Systems for their support in this initiative and their sustained commitment to the generation of differentiated investment research. For those participants whose ideas do not appear below, your ideas remain in contention for performance-based cash awards, as well as the Grand Prizes, given at the end of the year, all worth $66k and much more.
Today's winner takes home a $15k first-stage award, products from FactSet, and more. The next phase of the Tournament launches on December 8th with a Special Situations contest.
Your winners in the FactSet Best Short contest are:
1st Place: Siddharth Choraria (APS Asset Management)
Short on Harvey Norman Holdings Ltd. (HVN:AU)
Elevator Pitch: $416mm of "Tactical Support" Sign of Long-Term Structural Headwinds in Core. Poor Financial Disclosure. Stock At 3Y High 48x FCF, Upcoming Debt Re-Fi, Large Shareholder Sale.
Sid Choraria is a member of the Asian equity investment team at APS Asset Management. Prior to this, Sid worked at Goldman Sachs in Hong Kong in the Technology, Media and Telecom and Consumer Retail Investment Banking Division. Prior to Goldman, Sid worked as a buy-side analyst at Bandera Partners, a value-oriented hedge fund in New York performing bottom-up, fundamental research across value and special situations. His prior professional experience includes Morgan Stanley and Merrill Lynch in Hong Kong and New York. Sid received his MBA in Finance from New York University Stern School of Business where he was recipient of the Harvey Beker Scholarship and a member of Michael Price Student Value Fund, a fund at NYU endowed by legendary value investor, Michael Price. He came 2nd in the recent SumZero International ex-Contest, was a Finalist at last year's Value Investing Challenge hosted by SumZero and a Semi-Finalist at the 2014 Ira Sohn Idea Contest. APS Asset Management was founded in 1995 and amongst the largest hedge funds in the Asia Pacific region managing cumulatively nearly $3.0bn in AUM. APS was founded in 1995 by CIO, Wong Kok Hoi and employs a fundamental, value-oriented approach to stock picking across Asia and regulated by the MAS in Singapore.
2nd Place: Karl Richter (Tectonic Investments LLC)
Short on Kandi Technologies Group Inc (KNDI:US)
Elevator Pitch: While KNDI is touted as the “Tesla of China,” we believe this company is an exaggeration. KNDI is a possible zero with 50-70% downside even if we're wrong on fraud and deception.
Karl Richter has 15 years of research and fundamental long/short investing experience. He is the founder and portfolio manager of Tectonic Investments LLC. Tectonic Investments is a fundamental long/short equity manager focusing in the technology sector and niches of industrials, and energy/materials impacted by technology and change. We are distinguished by the focus and independence of our research process, uncorrelated returns and success using options in a fundamental strategy. Tectonic invests globally in focus themes from offices near Philadelphia, PA. Prior to starting Tectonic in 2013, he was a senior portfolio manager and founding partner of AlphaOne Capital Partners. He has also been a portfolio manager and research analyst at Susquehanna International Group and SAC Capital Advisors. He started his career in technology sector equity research at Robertson Stephens and Lehman Brothers. Karl earned a BS in mechanical engineering at M.I.T.
3rd Place: Shawn Kravetz (Esplanade Capital LLC)
Short on REC Silicon Asa (REC:NO)
Elevator Pitch: REC Silicon is caught in the crosshairs of a messy trade war between China and the US which could jeopardize ~80% of EBITDA, yet shares and Street estimates do not reflect this doom.
Shawn W. Kravetz is President of Esplanade Capital LLC, a Boston-based investment management company. Esplanade Capital was founded in 1999 to manage capital for a small number of like-minded families, private investors, and institutions. Esplanade Capital Partners I LLC, launched in 2000, is focused on a handful of sectors, including: retail, consumer products, casino gaming, business services, education, and solar power. Esplanade Capital Electron Partners LP, launched in 2009, intends to be the world’s premier private investment fund dedicated to public securities in solar energy and those sectors impacted by its emergence. Shawn received an MBA with High Distinction from Harvard Business School, where he was named a Baker Scholar, and received an A.B. in Economics from Harvard University, magna cum laude.
Please enjoy these excellent ideas with our compliments and stay tuned for the Special Situations contest coming December 8th. If you want access to all the ideas from the contest (Runners-Up, Honorable Mentions, etc) and the thousands on other pieces of buyside research,