Kerr Neilson's tips for finding and building great businesses

Douglas Isles

Platinum Asset Management

In our second episode of this season, I interview a very special guest who, as co-founder, was there at the origin of Platinum Asset Management almost three decades ago, and whose investment philosophy is the inspiration behind the Investing for Life podcast – Kerr Neilson.

Kerr shares a rare insight into his life growing up, how his father’s business challenges shaped his views on entitlement and hard work, learning the difference between luck and competitive advantage in investing, and how insecurities and the drive to win led to the creation of Platinum.

Full of honesty, wisdom and ‘learning opportunities,' this discussion is as insightful for investors as it is for anyone looking to build a successful business. As Kerr explains, success comes from continuous improvement and not being wedded to old ideas, especially your own. In his words: “If you are open to criticism and if you are open to new ideas, you progressively get better.”

Listen to this conversation to:

  • Learn where Kerr’s ability to find ‘unexpected’ value in the market came from, and why he believes awareness of any fashion is crucial to inform your own investment position;
  • Hear how lessons learned from analysing others’ businesses helped shape his own approach to improving Platinum;
  • Hear what Kerr believes are the two most important qualities candidates can have in an unpredictable market;
  • Gain an insight on his views on the current market and what lies ahead for the unprepared investor; and
  • Discover what Kerr feels is the single most important driver for any business to succeed.


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Disclaimer: Issued by Platinum Investment Management Limited ABN 25 063 565 006, AFSL 221935. This information is general in nature and does not take into account your specific needs or circumstances. You should consider your own financial position, objectives and requirements and seek professional financial advice before making any financial decisions.

1 contributor mentioned

Douglas Isles
Investment Specialist
Platinum Asset Management

An actuary by training, I first joined Platinum in 2003 as an investment analyst, having spent some time at the Commonwealth Bank as a product actuary and, prior to that, as an investment manager at Aegon Asset Management in Edinburgh. I left...

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