Steve’s proposal was sitting on my desk in my office at 110 Wall Street for weeks, and the more I read it, the less I liked it. I said to myself: This doesn’t make any business sense!
How is somebody going to invest in an ‘asset’ that doesn’t even exist yet, without a risk profile and expected returns via an analytical framework? Where is the value here? How do you price this? The more I read Steve’s proposal, the more frustrated I became.
In an earlier post, I talked about how I am trying to apply my Wall Street Quant skills to areas other than finance. One of those is data mining of social networks. But before doing any data mining, I needed to join a social network.
When people talk about social networks, most immediately think about Facebook; but there are others. Depending on your goal, finding the right social network can improve your odds of reaching it. If your goal is to make friends with a wide range of interests, Facebook is fine. For professional networking, Linkedin is great. For my fitness goal, I wanted to meet professionals close to my age, looking to improve physically in a rational way. I joined Bodyspace, owned by bodybuilding.com.
In 2006, my hedge fund advisory firm SAGA Capital was approached by a Hollywood actor-turned-independent-producer who had worked with John Travolta in one of his more notorious films.
He had also produced a moderately successful film that was acquired by Showtime. Let’s call him ‘Steve’. Steve was looking to finance a slate of 10 films, in which he had some actors committed, as well as some ‘pre-sales’ financing in place, decent screenplays (yes, I actually read them) by good writers for most of his films.
The picture shows unemployed men outside a soup kitchen in Depression-era Chicago in 1931, with the unemployment trend going strong. Today, the unemployment numbers recently released by the US Department of Labor indicate that the current unemployment trend is still strong, and that long-term unemployment is still a mayor problem. 16.2% of African Americans, and 11.9% of the Hispanics are unemployed, vs, 8% for Whites and 7% for Asians.