The CEO of successful investment house Galaxy Partners has stated that he sees Bitcoin and other cryptocurrency as a highly risky investment. It is for these reasons that Viswanathan Shankar will not be allocating any of his fund to the emerging technological and financial innovation.
Instead, Shankar prefers to invest in Africa and Asia-based companies that provide for the needs of the normal people.
Shankar Warns Against BAT – Bitcoin, Argentina, and Tesla
According to a report in the Nikkei Asian Review, Viswanathan Shankar, CEO of Gateway Partners, remains opposed to investing in digital currencies. He had originally warned against investing in the space in 2017. Despite how much lower prices are than their all-time highs achieved that year, Shankar remains reluctant to allocate his fund’s capital to Bitcoin and other cryptos.
In a recent interview with the publication, Shankar said:
“We are for biscuits, not Bitcoins.”
This statement alludes to the asset manager’s stance that Gateway Partners should favour investments in companies providing goods and services that the everyday person needs in both Africa and Asia instead of risky technological investments.
Shankar’s investing policy seems to echo that of Berkshire Hathaway’s legendary anti-Bitcoiner, Warren Buffet. Like Buffet, who famously called Bitcoin “rat poison squared” last year, Shankar does not like to invest in what he deems to be fads. Instead, he favours investments based around basic amenities, with a focus on the middle classes.
Shankar is eyeing a rate of return of 20-25% for Gateway Partners in 2019. It not only aims to avoid speculative tech investments but will evade the fallout from the ongoing trade war between China and the US by focusing on other areas of Asia and Africa. Shankar also hopes that focusing on such emerging economies will create even greater opportunities down the line:
“South-South trade may increase further in the long run… It will create new global supply chains, global markets, new trade routes and investments.”
Along with Bitcoin, Shankar identified two other no-go areas for him in terms of allocating his fund’s capital in 2017. These were Argentina and Tesla. Confusingly for many, Shankar advised investors to “stay away from BAT”. Of course, us cryptocurrency enthusiasts will immediately think of the altcoin recently listed by Coinbase Pro – Basic Attention Token. Meanwhile, Asian investors could also mistake the acronym for three of the largest Chinese internet companies – Baidu, Alibaba Group, and Tencent Holdings.
Shankar stated in the recent interview:
“I think I have been proven right on all three.”
Bitcoin, of course, is currently valued at a fraction of the price it was in late 2017, Argentina is on the precipice of a financial crisis, and Tesla is struggling thanks to its CEO’s questionable style of leadership.
Before taking his role at Gateway Partners in 2015, Viswanathan Shankar was on the board at Standard Chartered and also served as CEO for the company in almost all corners of the globe.
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