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Membership Benefits

  • Learn to Apply Buffett/Munger Mental Models to Asia

    Our proprietary “Bamboo Innovator” mental model for successful investing in Asia is rooted in the invaluable insights and experiences of Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger. Koon Boon Kee, the Managing Editor of The Moat Report Asia, is a lifelong disciple of Berkshire Hathaway.

  • Discover Practical Tools and Resources for Asian Investing

    Whether you are looking for the latest insider transactions data in Singapore or reporting disclosures in Taiwan, we will let you know of the lowest-cost and most-efficient ways to get to the right set of data.

  • Learn About Fundamental Developments That Matter

    While we are bottom-up investors, we recognize that the country and industry context in which a company operates is important. You will not only learn about great investment ideas, but the thought process and wider context behind each idea generated.

  • Get to Know the Best Capital Allocators in Asia

    A vast number of companies in Asia are family-controlled. That can be a curse and a blessing. Tap into our knowledge and network of the most capable and honest Asian entrepreneurs and capital allocators in order to learn where and how value is truly created in Asian businesses.

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    Grow Your Capital with Asian Compounders

    Have you ever heard of Golfzon in Korea, THC in Taiwan, or ARB Corp. in Australia? While these names may be less obscure than bigger and more well-known companies throughout Asia, they dwarf most in terms of long-term shareholder return. Let us help you uncover these compounders before they get big.

  • Avoid Asian Value Traps

    There are thousands of companies in Asia that play on the “Asian growth story” but fail to deliver returns to shareholders. Our local expertise in accounting and governance, as well as years of investment experience across dozens of Asian countries will help you avoid the losers.

  • Tap into Our Proprietary Database of Asian Wide-Moat Companies

    Get a quick overview of which companies in Asia can be considered to possess wide moats and why. Benefit from our ongoing updates and let our “live” database assist you in your own research journey through Asia.

  • Get On-the-Ground Answers to Your Questions

    Singapore-based Koon Boon Kee is a foremost expert on competitive advantage. He has built an extensive body of knowledge on wide-moat businesses across Asia, including as head of research at Aegis Portfolio Managers in Singapore and as portfolio manager at Mirae, Korea’s largest mutual fund company.

Membership Questions

Why is The Moat Report Asia unique?

Our personal motivation in embarking on The Moat Report Asia has been driven by our sadness from observing up close and personal the hard-earned assets of many investors, including friends and their families, burnt badly by the popular mantra: “Ride the Asian Growth Story!”

While the Asian growth story is popular with mainstream media, and many global investors, the companies that are supposedly the beneficiaries of this positive macro trend (whether related to “The Great Middle-Class Consumption Story” or “The Great Urbanization Story”), often turn out to be fraudulent set-ups with controlling insiders expropriating the cash and tangible assets through intricate “tunnelling” acts (i.e. money-go-round related-party transactions). Famous Asian “blue-chip” companies are not spared from governance breakdowns, ranging from the “Best Buy of China”, “Nike of China”, “Wal-Mart of China” to Korean chaebols with well-known brand franchises and reputable Southeast Asian and Taiwanese family businesses.

We witnessed firsthand the emotional upheavals that successful professionals go through when they invest their hard-earned money – and their family’s – in these “Ride The Asian Growth Story” stocks either by themselves or through money managers, and these stocks then see their previous multi-bagger returns disappear and even turn into hefty losses. And they were ashamed to visit their parents back in their home country as a result, tormented by guilt and living through anguish. We also lament the plight of promising entrepreneurs such as “Asia’s J.K. Rowling” who are tempted into value-destroying deal-making when surrounded by shrewd fee-seeking bankers and syndicates. And then following fund-raising exercises, the share price typically plunges subsequently after a few years with missing cash and assets.

Many Asian stocks appear to live in two time periods with a distinctive structural break in their time series. Before the outbreak of the 2007/09 global financial crisis, they were stock market darlings generating “multibagger” returns. During the crisis, their share prices nose-dived, but they either get cheaper and cheaper or erupt into some form of governance or accounting fraud scandals; there is no mean-reversion back to their previous promising growth and valuation levels because the numbers were propped up artificially during good times and the studiously-assessed net-net assets with liquidation value have already been tunnelled out and expropriated.

This prevalent situation in Asia is analogous to that of the Picture of Dorian Gray in the novel by Oscar Wilde (1890) – the face of Dorian Gray showed no signs of aging as time passed, whereas the sins of his worldly existence are vivid in the portrait of himself that he kept hidden in the attic. The Dorian Grays of Asia have been able to get away with their accounting frauds and misgovernance transgressions because they are branded as sexy growth companies who charm party-goers with their good looks (quantitative financials) and riding on “The Asian Growth Story”. At Bamboo Innovator, our task is to support fellow value investors to understand and appreciate the early signs of potential problems and red flags in Asian companies ahead of the market, to see the real attic portrait of the companies’ financial health and economic worth.

Yet, searching for the accounting grains of sand can be tricky given that confirmation bias can distort the view of focusing on the trees or “chess pieces” but missing the forest or the “chess board”. It is all too easy to nit-pick and feed into the delicious emotion of having to be “right”. For instance, one would not invest in Google because of the accounting treatment in stock-based compensation. We have always been fascinated why and how even under the most austere of conditions and environment, certain entrepreneurs and their business models seem to remain resilient and continue to compound value, just like the bamboo who bend, not break, even in the most terrifying storms that would snapped the mighty resisting oak tree.

This has been the central fascination of our lifework and the reason why we are inspired to share our findings with a community of like-minded value investors. We still hold on feverishly to the idealistic hope that a community of like-minded people can come together to spread their knowledge and kindness built around a resilient mental model, a home that everyone can breathe in it and make it their own. We hope that our candid and authentic views about value investing can be shared in our little community. This is why we care so much about doing The Moat Report Asia for you. Having the inner compass of the Bamboo Innovator in our hearts can help us not lose our way in difficult and uncertain times as we journey together in the dangerous Asian capital jungles.

How can the Report help you gain Buffett’s "punchcard" conviction in Asia?

Conviction in stocks is rare in uncertain times which immobilize decision-making. It’s far easier to armor up behind the statistics of diversification and wishy-washy confusing macroeconomics prognosis. Assets are shift around, generating fees and expenses which are costly to the investor as a result. All these come undone when most end up pursuing similar strategy, resulting in correlated performance and destructive destabilizing price impact in deleveraging crises situations. Warren Buffett warned us wisely that when we think and act as if our investment portfolio were a punch card with only twenty slots, our ultimate financial and emotional welfare will be improved dramatically. No longer will we be vulnerable in times of uncertainty and panic situations due to lack of conviction, as we are now guided by the in-depth knowledge of how to choose wisely. Choosing wisely means being selective. It means not only looking but looking properly, looking with real thought. It’s about seeing the full picture, noting the details that matter, and understanding how to contextualize those details within a broader framework of thought.

Intuit’s former Chief Technology Officer and entrepreneur David Murray summed up his years of experience in remarking that we are great at solving problems but less adept in defining the right problems. LinkedIn’s founder Reid Hoffman expounded on this when he said that it’s really asking “How can I help?” and to “fulfill needs, solve problems”.

What "problem" does the Report solve for investors?

The primary problem for value investors in Asia is that the beautiful “macro siren” is alluring, but dangerous at the micro-level, leaving even experienced money managers shipwrecked before they reach their target destination for their clients. The Moat Report Asia solves this problem by helping you protect your capital amid the many pitfalls in Asia, while enabling you to profit from Asian compounding machines. As Asia’s capital markets mature, investors need to be very suspicious of the old workhorse argument that “Oh, Asia is growing and a rising tide lifts all boats.” This was perhaps true from 1998 through 2008. But the 2007/09 global financial crisis is a game-changer at the micro-level. Firm-specific strengths and weaknesses are attenuated in the growth expansion strategies as those who persisted in building innovative business models break away from the pack to outperform even in uncertain times.

Membership Options

Individual SubscriptionInstitutional Subscription
$167
per month (billed annually)
$497
per month (billed annually)
The Moat Report Asia (monthly)

  • Part I presents a well-researched, high-conviction, wide-moat investment idea in Asia. The highlighted equity is judged to be significantly undervalued. The equity is also likely to have little or no coverage by the wider analyst community.
  • Part II expands upon the context and idea generation process behind the highlighted equity investment idea. This part includes thought-provoking and timely insights on key industry and other trends in Asia.

The Moat Report Asia (monthly)

  • Part I presents a well-researched, high-conviction, wide-moat investment idea in Asia. The highlighted equity is judged to be significantly undervalued. The equity is also likely to have little or no coverage by the wider analyst community.
  • Part II expands upon the context and idea generation process behind the highlighted equity investment idea. This part includes thought-provoking and timely insights on key industry and other trends in Asia.

Bamboo Innovator Insight (weekly)

Timely thought-piece on fundamental trends, potential red flags and other issues of interest to long-term investors in Asian markets.

Past pieces have explored:

  • Investing in Media Companies in Asia
  • “Must-Have” vs “Nice-To-Have”: Exploiting the Sector-Company Gap in Asia
  • Opportunities in Event-Driven Investing and Spinoffs in Asia
  • How to Avoid Value Traps in Low-Cost Businesses
  • Detecting Accounting Fraud in Asia

Bamboo Innovator Insight (weekly)

Timely thought-piece on fundamental trends, potential red flags and other issues of interest to long-term investors in Asian markets.

Past pieces have explored:

  • Investing in Media Companies in Asia
  • “Must-Have” vs “Nice-To-Have”: Exploiting the Sector-Company Gap in Asia
  • Opportunities in Event-Driven Investing and Spinoffs in Asia
  • How to Avoid Value Traps in Low-Cost Businesses
  • Detecting Accounting Fraud in Asia

Exclusive Q&A Service

  • Ask KB Kee your questions and get answers.
  • Take advantage of our local presence in Singapore to delve deeper into the issues most important to you.
  • Think of this as pressing the “Help” button to navigate the Asian capital jungle.

Access to Proprietary Database (200+ companies)

  • Gain insights into the thought process behind coming up with the monthly ideas in The Moat Report Asia.
  • See the additions and deletions to the database based on changes in fundamentals.
  • Spark your own idea generation process.

Customized, Timely Updates

  • Get actionable updates on past ideas presented in The Moat Report Asia, if and when warranted by fundamentals and prices.
  • Rely on continuity in research coverage.