I met Josh the first time in 2006, at the value investment seminar I attend each year in Italy. In that year Josh was finishing up his MBA at Columbia University specialising in value investing.
Since then we've kept in touch through e-mail and each year had long talks at the seminar in Italy where in 2010 he also started presenting.
In 2007, directly after finishing his MBA Josh started an investment partnership called Greenlea Lane Capital Partners, named after the street he grew up on.
At the seminar in 2011 all the investors were licking their wounds and discussing how the last few years of dreadful stock market performance has impacted their net worth as well as that of their clients.
Market beating returns
Josh surprised everyone when he mentioned that from 2007 to the end of 2010 the partnership he manages returned 55% to investors compared to the 2.4% of the Russell 3000 index. On a yearly basis over four years this equals 11% compared to the 0.6% of the index.
Needless to say we were all very impressed with the performance in arguably the worst for years of market performance in the last half a century.
What you will immediately notice when meeting Josh is his soft-spoken nature. He does not boast, is not arrogant and will hardly say anything about his partnerships or its performance except if he's asked about it.
Knows what he is doing
But when you start talking to him you will immediately notice that he knows exactly what he's doing. He has excellent investment ideas which he has researched from top to bottom. With no question about numbers, business strategy and management’s incentives he cannot answer immediately.
After hearing his presentation about pricing power at the value investing seminar in Italy in 2011 I immediately thought that you will benefit if I could convince Josh to explain his investment approach, where he gets his investment ideas and mistakes he has made in an interview.
I was really pleased when Josh agreed to the interview below (Emphasis mine).