Yvonne Jeng ’16 pitched Alexion Pharmaceuticals (ALXN) to the Student Managed Investment Fund (SMIF) on January 27, 2016. Alexion is a biotechnology company that is focused on the research, development, and commercialization of antibody therapeutics for life-threatening, ultra-rare diseases. The company’s mission is to develop life-transforming therapies for patients with rare diseases and deliver medical breakthroughs where none currently exist. Three drugs lead Alexion’s rare disease-focused pipeline: Soliris, Strensiq, and Kanuma. Most notable is Soliris, the company’s billion-dollar blockbuster. Alexion has over 20 drug candidates in its pipeline, which spans several therapeutic areas. Many of them have the potential to become first-in-class therapies for patients with severe and life-threatening disorders. Alexion has experienced exceptional revenue growth throughout the past few years. The company’s future will reside in the orphan drug market, a rapidly growing but incredibly risky market.
Amanda Beare ’16 pitched The Home Depot (HD) to the Student Managed Investment Fund (SMIF) on January 20, 2016. Two seasoned retailing executives, Bernie Marcus and Arthur Blank, founded Home Depot in 1978, along with the help of investment banker and Bucknell University alumnus Kenneth Langone ’57. Home Depot and its subsidiaries operate full-service, warehouse-style stores that average approximately 104,000 sq. ft. of indoor space, and an additional 24,000 sq. ft. of outdoor space for gardening needs. The company offers over 30,000 different types of building materials, home improvement supplies, and garden and lawn products for professional customers, do-it-yourself customers, and do-it-for-me customers. Home Depot differentiates its business from others by striving to achieve superior customer service, product authority, disciplined capital allocation, heightened productivity and efficiency, and a greater interconnected. The class voted to buy Home Depot.
Will Stockwell ’16 pitched Facebook (FB) to the Student Managed Investment Fund (SMIF) on December 2, 2015. Founded in 2004, FB’s mission is to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected. With over one billion active users worldwide, FB has an enormous global influence. The company focuses on creating value for people, marketers, and developers. FB’s products currently consist of Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, and WhatsApp. Numerous opportunities for growth will allow FB to continue to be sustainable. Instagram and WhatsApp have yet to be monetized, and the company recently announced the acquisition of Oculus Rift, a virtual reality platform that has yet to be implemented. The majority of revenue is generated from advertisements, and FB has 2.5 million advertising partners. FB released exceptional financial results for the third quarter of 2015, with a 41 percent increase in revenue. The class voted to buy 392 shares of FB.
Bobby Le Blanc ’88 joined the SMIF class for lunch on November 19, 2015. Le Blanc is currently a Senior Managing Director at Onex Corporation, a private equity firm. Since joining Onex, Le Blanc has led all of the company’s acquisitions within the Healthcare and Financial Services sectors. He focuses on the Media, Technology, Telecom, and Real Estate industries as well. He has been with the company since 1999. Prior to joining Onex, Le Blanc has worked at Berkshire Hathaway and General Electric. He also serves on the Board of Directors of many different organizations, including ResCare, Carestream Health, and First Berkshire Hathaway Life. Le Blanc holds an MBA from NYU Stern School of Business.
Tim Howard ’16 pitched Brunswick Corporation (BC) to the Student Managed Investment Fund (SMIF) on November 19, 2015. BC is a global designer, manufacturer, and marketer of recreational Marine and Fitness products. The company’s product portfolio consists of leading brands that have been increasing their market share. Its product offerings are diversified through three key segments: Engines, Boats, and Fitness. One big differentiating factor about BC is that it is the only company to be a leader across both the Marine market and Fitness industry. The company has experienced a gradual but perceptible recovery since the financial crisis in 2008. Revenue has continued to increase since 2012, and BC exceeded analyst expectations eight times within the past nine quarters. Additionally, ever since the company divested its Bowling business in 2014, it has boosted their cash and given them the ability to pursue other acquisitions. The class voted to purchase 600 shares of BC.
Dimitri Drone ’90 joined the Student Managed Investment Fund (SMIF) for lunch on November 17, 2015. He is currently a Partner at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), and leads PwC’s Deals business for the Pharmaceutical and Life Sciences sector. Dimitri advises corporate and private equity clients on the structure of M&A transactions, and he is also a leading advisor on valuation principles within the life sciences industries, which includes pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, and medical devices companies, among many others. Dimitri has been with PwC his entire career. He has his CPA and CFA certifications, and he received his MBA from the University of Chicago. He presented an overview of the biotechnology industry and talked about valuation methods for biotechnology companies.
Anders Velischek ’16 pitched CarMax (KMX) to the Student Managed Investment Fund (SMIF) on November 11, 2015. KMX is a used-car retailer in the Consumer Discretionary sector, within the Specialty Retail industry and the Automobile Retail sub-industry. The company was founded with a vision to simplify the used-car buying experience. Their customer-focused business model encompasses low, no haggle prices and guaranteed appraisals. KMX’s strong executive leadership, share repurchase program, and continued domestic expansion illustrate its enormous growth potential. However, some risks that the company faces include a drop in used-vehicle sales prices, a decrease in consumer spending, a rise in delinquency rates, and a rise in gas prices. Furthermore, the company’s auto loan financing program, CarMax Auto Finance (CAF), is risky as well.
Emily Dafilou ’16 pitched Restoration Hardware (RH) to the Student Managed Investment Fund (SMIF) on November 4, 2015. RH is a leading luxury retailer in the home furnishings marketplace within the Consumer Discretionary sector. Their product offering includes furniture, lighting, textiles, bath ware, décor, outdoor and garden, and children’s furnishings. Emily highlighted the company’s competitive strategy, which includes its positioning as a high-end luxury brand, brand image, pricing model, multi-channel sales, and real estate platform. RH’s unique business model includes its next-generation Design Galleries, which is a growth strategy that many specialty retail stores are not able to do. The company has also demonstrated stellar financial performance, showing consistent revenue growth at a rate of over 20 percent for the fifth consecutive year. The launch of RH Teen and RH Modern will add to the company’s top and bottom line. As a company that was near bankruptcy in 2001, RH has since recovered and continues to show promising growth within a niche market. The class voted to buy 300 shares of RH.