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Monday, 3 December 2012

My short comments re Vanity & Debt & short term incentives; on Must read post by Prof Aswath Damodaran Musings on Markets: Acquisition Archives: Winners and Losers

Hey Prof

very timely piece,

agree with your analysis, I know well quite a few of these top CEOs /Board directors... sadly there maybe other reasons ontop of the pressure of advisers and very sad fact is that at present capital market is about Vanity & Debt & short term incentives

1) Vanity of "being the deal makers" , whether successful or not.. HP& Autonomy = failed but eBay & Skype was a success as Meg managed to offload it Microsoft for a profit!?

2) Debt fueled everything era is still alive and well despite it created millions of zombie firms now worldwide.. should "efficient use of capital" still be equal to debt any longer!??

3) shorterm-ism rules the day now, given spot price changes of share price (don't forget it is market sentiments and not equal to absolute viability of companies) and short term appointments of CEOs (max 3-5years if lucky) and their short term incentives means it makes much more sense for them to make the short term deals as they can get their bonus or options in time before they parachuted or head-hunted out (unless they mess up and get sacked with a golden goodbye)....

plus of course the "market" fueled by likes of CNBC, reuters, bloomberg as volatility for them means better business!! (nothing wrong with that, loads of good friends for me in that sector, but this IS the status quo!!)

Therefore, if you are doing any analysis, I would implore you to take into account for not listed firms and also family dynasties and conglomerates (mostly private now) and we should be able to really understand the real reasons behind all these.. !?? 

hope I made sense!?

BR

@GarethWong

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