Category Archives: SAMPLE POSTS

[MCO – Moody’s] The Self-Reinforcing Standards Moat

Moody’s is one of the big 3 Nationally Recognized Statistical Rating Organizations (NRSROs), a title bestowed by the SEC on a handful of credit rating agencies, the top 3 of whom act as an oligopoly in the US debt ratings gambit.  As you well know, Moody’s (and S&P and Fitch) fell into disrepute during the […]

[AMZN – Amazon] Explanations Matter

 “Theories are nets cast to catch what we call ‘the world’: to rationalize, to explain, and to master it.” The Logic of Scientific Discovery, Karl Popper I wrote about AMZN on the scuttleblurb blog earlier this year (I get deeper into the weeds in that post.  Check it out).  Mounting saccharine coverage on Google, Amazon, […]

[SHW – Sherwin-Williams] Valuation Looks Stretched

If you’re unfamiliar with the architectural coatings sector, you might be surprised to know that selling paint can be a good business…and no one sells it more profitably in North America than SHW, whose market share gains have come from both the multi-decade shift from “Do-It-Yourself” (DIY) to professional paint jobs and a leading position […]

[GAIA – Gaia] Interesting Company, Less Interesting Price

The ~$100mn float may render this jockey bet too illiquid for some of you hedge fund MoUs.  GAIA is a speculative enterprise with a questionable business moat run and 38%-owned by competent CEO/ascetic, Jirka Rysavy, who after spending years building and then paring away various businesses inside (as it is now called) GAIA, is left steering […]

[RYAAY – Ryanair] Low Cost Flywheel

(1,827 words) “One thing we have looked at is maybe putting a coin slot on the toilet door…Pay-per-pee.  If someone wanted to pay £5 to go to the toilet, I’d carry them myself.  I would wipe their bums for a fiver.” Michael O’Leary, CEO of Ryanair In a letter to one of GEICO’s officers dated […]

[BRO – Brown & Brown] Compounder in a Fragmented Sector

“He wasn’t just saving his own soul when he donned his coat and hat after dinner and went out again to resume his work – no, it was also to save some poor son of a bitch on the brink of letting his insurance policy lapse, and thus endangering his family’s security ‘in the event […]