2008-05-23

Markel Annual Meeting notes

Tom GaynerKey Takeaways:

  • (1) Chief Investment Officer Thomas Gayner called the current environment the best he's seen in his 18 years at Markel for buying best-of-breed companies at a discount. Pretty strong words from him there.
  • (2) Steve Markel thinks Markel should be valued at 2x Book Value. At the current book value (as of 3/31) of $263 Book value, that puts shares at $526.
  • (3) The culture at Markel is extremely strong. The employee owners (we call them that because they actually buy shares on the open market) are bought in to what Markel is doing. That is an incredible advantage for an insurer, or any business.
  • (4) Thomas Gayner thanked the underwriting side of the business when he first got up, saying he understands how hard it is to have such discipline and generate the money (float) that his team gets to invest. Their top investing priority is not to lose it.
  • (5) Thomas Gayner also said that bad times will always come and go. There have been many times in the past when people have predicted the worst (food and energy crises, runaway inflation, economic depression). It usually doesn't happen. :-)

Direct Link - Markel Annual Meeting notes.

1 comment:

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