Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Al Gore Score!: Profit Jumps at Gore-Backed Investment Firm

Kids you don't have to be smart to make money.
From our January 15, 2010 post "We Lost a Friend Yesterday (Hint: we like reporters)":
As Al Gore said when interviewed by Conan O’Brien:

Conan:: ” …Can you, can you tell me, is this a viable solution, geothermal energy?”

Al: “It definitely is, and it’s a relatively new one. People think about geothermal energy — when they think about it at all — in terms of the hot water bubbling up in some places, but two kilometers or so down in most places there are these incredibly hot rocks, ’cause the interior of the earth is extremely hot, several million degrees, and the crust of the earth is hot ”

Mr. Gore was brought in as a partner at Venture Capital firm Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield & Byers which is a major investor in geothermal tech company Altarock.

I’m guessing Mr. Gore was not brought in for his scientific expertise.
From the Wall Street Journal:
An asset management company set up by former U.S. Vice President Al Gore and the son of one of England's most successful football managers almost quadrupled its profits last year and saw its turnover more than double in its fifth year of operation.

Generation Investment Management, the company launched in 2004 by Mr. Gore, Mark Ferguson, the son of Manchester United manager Sir Alex Ferguson, and David Blood, the former chief executive of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, reported pretax profits of £31.9 million for the calendar year 2009 in accounts filed with Companies House last week.

The figure represented an almost fourfold increase on the £8.6 million it earned the year before, which was the first time the company made a profit. Generation's revenue rose to £46 million from £19 million in 2009—with much of this increased revenue coming from the company's U.S. arm, the figures from which are reported in the London-registered company accounts.

Mr. Ferguson, the company's chief investment officer, helped launch the company after a career at GSAM and leads Generation's portfolio team.

A glimpse into the portfolio team's performance was provided last month in the annual report of the Environment Agency Pension Scheme, which awarded Gore's firm a £50m mandate in August 2008. It said Generation's global equity fund made 54.1% in the 12 months to the end of March 2010. This outperformed its benchmark, the MSCI Developed World Index, by 10.1%. Its target was to beat this index by 3%.
From August 2008 to the end of March 2009, Generation's fund had lost 1.1%, the pension scheme accounts showed, but the fund still managed to outperform its benchmark by 16.2%. The Environment Agency mandate had increased to be worth £75.9m at the end of March 2010....MORE
HT: MarketBeat who writes:
Al Gore: Markets Genius?
Why not? Shouldn’t be too hard for the guy who invented the internet.

In all seriousness, it’s been a rough few months personally for the big guy. But at least the investment firm he helped found has been having a decent time of it....
We have so many posts on Mr. Gore that it borders on the ridiculous,
[borders? -ed]
The Google search for "Al Gore" returns 1290 hits. 

For backround here is a major (3400 words!) piece from Fortune:
Al Gore: Venture Capitalist ( Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield & Byers) 
Here is a follow-up by one of the co-authors:
Clean energy will make Gore rich
A PE Hub piece on some of the Kleiner investments:
Can Al Gore Be A Profiteer Without Profits?
Here's the Google search for "generation Investment management" (658 hits).

We have links to GIM's 13F filings going back 3 1/2 years.
In our most recent post on Generation "Al Gore's Generation Investment Management's Portfolio Ain't So Green: It's Deliberate" I said:
Every time GIM files their 13F quarterly report with the SEC I trot out some boilerplate:

Two comments I've made in the past but have to repeat:
1) These are only the publicly traded U.S. stocks in their portfolio. Private deals, foreign stocks, cash etc. don't show up.
GIM is reputed to be running $5 Billion, these securities only total $2.36 Bil.
2) This is not a very "green" portfolio.
The intro to the Nov. 2009 filing was a bit more flippant:
Al's got wood!
And implements!
As we've commented before this is not a particularly green portfolio.
These are only the publicly traded U.S. names. Other investments (GIM is a large holder of carbon trader Camco, CAO.L, for instance) they aren't required to report, so they don't.
Here's the inside scoop, from NewNet...
Here's GIM's last 13F.

Anything you'd like to know about Mr. Gore?
How 'bout we talk about the Armand Hammer/Occidental Petroleum connection...