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Apple Summit, Los Angeles

Technorati and I are proud to announce the first investor summit dedicated to the long-term investors in Apple.

We will host folks interested in discussing the fundamentals of Apple as a business and how it operates as a recurring revenue model.

Titled “The Goose That Lays The Golden Eggs” it was inspired by a blog post from 2013 foreshadowing how human nature instinctively discounts Apple and yet how that nature is mismatched to how Apple actually works.

If you are curious about why Wall Street says “Sell” and Warren Buffet says “Buy” on Apple you might want to spend some time with us.

Agenda:

  • How to read the company’s performance given its published results. We will review how to build a model of the company’s financials and how it can be used to forecast the next quarter. We can go line-by-line through the income statement.
  • How to think about the markets Apple considers important. This is the best way to forecast the company’s performance beyond its current portfolio. This requires calibrating your sense of timing of innovations. What is too early, what is too small, what is something where Apple can’t exercise control? Innovation theory is essential to this understanding. If you know where Apple could go next and where it won’t it helps you build patience into your planning.
  • How to understand Apple’s culture and its resources and processes. This gets into the critical management question that leadership at Apple is concerned with. I’ve had a few conversations with and have some great insight from former managers. Curiously, this is Apple’s greatest competitive advantage and its sustainability is the key “moat” question. Most people don’t even realize that this is the most important question for investors.
  • How to understand the market’s reaction to Apple. If you understand the three points above it becomes necessary to juxtapose how others see the company. There is a compelling case of asymmetry of information even though “everyone” is watching the same data. I use the fable of “The Goose that Lays the Golden Eggs” to best describe how most people react when they observe Apple. Apple is something which cannot possibly exist and therefore it is fragile and must be treated as a transient system. It leads to deep discounting in the market. This cognitive illusion has an opposite: monopolies are over-valued because they are seen as invulnerable and permanent even though they are brittle. I use antifragility as another metaphor. Many anecdotes from Steve Jobs also indicate that he understood this asymmetry and instilled it in the company. Investors need to understand this dynamic in order to profit from it.

Sign up here.

Apple Summit

  • Walt French

    I won’t be flying down but I *WILL* note that just over 2 years ago (28Jan2016), I was listening to Horace’s podcast & his logic convinced me to put a large slug of money into AAPL—at $95.55, just under half of today’s price.

    Pre-retirement, I ran several $billions of mutual funds, emphasizing diversification, but this was my first (!) investment into an individual stock for my own account. Gotta say how happy I was to tilt my overall portfolio to a less diversified one, for the obvious potential that only Horace was able to make a good case for.

    • Frank Ichel

      That’s awesome Walt, congrats and I have a similar story of success investing with Apple with conviction thanks to Horace. Put a huge chunk of my $ in AAPL since 2010 and continuously added to it, much like Buffett has done a few years later. Walt, when you invested at $95 that sounds near the price where we had a dramatic nadir in AAPL from $130 down to 90 due to fears of China growth. I backed up the truck at several moments like that with whatever dry powder I could muster. It has been a hell of a ride. Lucrative for sure but not as stellar as returns for AMZN or sadly even domino’s for that matter, however, Apple has been the business that I would have wanted to own, dollar for dollar, based on my mental models. I find it irksome to invest long term in something I don’t understand well enough to believe it is attractively valued and then stomach the losses (including an index fund).

      Learned a ton from Horace via the critical path podcast and poetic articles on asymco.com. If only all analyst reports were held to such a standard!

      I am super excited to see Horace bring events like this to reality, and I will be signing up for an event near DC. I firmly believe, Horace, that this is a calling for you and you are doing a great service to the Apple investment community.

      Other folks I’ve learned a lot from are Neil Cybart, Ben Thompson. I sincerely hope that Neil in particular would either collaborate with Horace here or at least attend the show in order to comment on some of these ideas to his subscribers (yours truly included).

      Reach out on Twitter anytime – @ubeenfranked
      – Frank

    • claimchowder

      I won’t be flying either, because it’s on too short notice for me. But I will add that I, too, have gained financial freedom by listening closely to Horace’s analysis, and then choosing to not sell AAPL when sentiment turned extremely negative again and again (fears about small TAM, low-end disruption from Android, deferred revenue, China fears, etc.). It takes time for his fundamentals analysis to prove right, as sentiment traders carry a lot of weight these days. But in the end it always does prove right, and smart analysis combined with patience and perseverance paid off immensely.

  • mstrmac

    It was 2005 post split that I started investing in a full basket of ’s. Held on through all ups and downs until the news of Icahn selling his stake. Sold 90% of my holdings but bought it all back a few dollars lower. Renewed my long stance since. Retired and still long. My dividend income could triple if I diversify but I stubbornly hold on.

  • Space Gorilla

    Long AAPL since shortly after the iPhone was released and happy, happy, happy! Ignore the trolls and doomsayers, Apple isn’t nearly done yet.

  • johan

    Q to Horace…I flew over from Europe twice to attend Asymco conferences LA/SF. But as I want to reduce my flying, I wonder if there’s any other way to catch up?

  • orienteer

    Horace, will you offer a summit in NYC in the future?