John Burbank and Passport Capital’s Biggest Idea for 2011

Bloomberg Markets did an excellent review of Passport Capital’s John Burbank. It’s a very comprehensive and long article. Here are the most important facts about John Burbank:

John Burbank PASSPORT CAPITAL

1. Burbank shorted subprime mortgages in 2007 and returned 220% net return. He personally pocketed $370 Million that year.

2. Burbank is a “beefy man with a full beard who looks more like a longshoreman than an elite hedge fund manager

3. Passport’s Global Strategy Fund returned 23.6% annually after fees since 2000.

4. Global Strategy returned 18.2% after fees in 2010.

5. Burbank doesn’t dress like a hedge fund manager either. He wears fleece vests and chinos.

6. Burbank prefers to invest in undiscovered commodity producers instead of investing directly in commodities.

7. “He is an original thinker, and he has got guts,” Hayman Capital’s Kyle Bass says. This must be the nice way of saying that Burbank doesn’t shy away from risk.

8. Burbank almost lost his shirt (I mean his fleece vest) in 2008. His fund lost 38% in October 2008, and 51% for the year.

9. Passport has $4.6 Billion in AUM.

10. Burbank’s liquid assets were only $5000 in November 1998. He invested that in a Japanese stock which returned 3000% in 15 months.

11. John Burbank’s biggest idea for 2010 is Saudi Arabia. Eleven percent of Passport’s flagship fund is invested in Saudi Arabian investments. Burbank is betting on publicly traded petrochemical manufacturers, banks, construction firms and health-care providers.

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