Investor Central launches "Tycoon" reports, especially for US and European fund managers

SINGAPORE (August 19, 2014) - Investor Central today launched a new class of ground-breaking equities research reports, to provide cutting edge local insights about Singapore- and Malaysia-listed companies specially tailored designed for fund managers outside of Asia.

Branded "Tycoon", the reports are unique in that they offer sober, non-promotional insights, and provide on-the-ground, street smart views which institutional investors outside of the region have difficulty accessing.

"Investor Central Tycoon reports alert investors to information gaps and inconsistencies, and ask the tough questions investors need to ask before making investment decisions", said Mark Laudi, former CNBC anchor and Executive Editor, Investor Central.

"The corporate culture surrounding transparency and access are very different here in Asia than what US and European investors are used to.

"This leaves non-Asian investors struggling for an accurate picture as to what's really going on, on the ground," Laudi said.

"We recognise there is a need in the market for critical, street-smart research that's neither oriented around sell-side pressures, nor the need for analysts to forge cozy relationships with the companies they cover."

"It's very difficult for investors outside of the region to hop in a cab and see the companies for themselves," Laudi concluded, "We can, and we serve as their eyes and ears on the ground."

Watch the interview with Mark Laudi here.


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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Q: What is Investor Central?

Investor Central is part private research service, part news organisation, which promises to keep investments honest by asking the questions that need to be asked. Our researchers conduct their research from a fundamental, value perspective.

Q: Who is behind Investor Central?

Investor Central launched in 2006 by former CNBC anchor Mark Laudi. We have a small, qualified team of researchers whose full-time occupation is to research and write our reports.

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Q: What are the benefits of Investor Central Tycoon reports?

Tycoon reports include:

  • All questions we asked of the company, and any answers we receive
  • Relationships between the researched company and other companies (including BVI and Cayman companies), individuals and events
  • Key fundamental information
  • Consensus recommendation/price target
  • Internal auditor(s) - if they have one
  • Photos and maps
  • 1-year archive of earlier reports
  • Index of sources of information

Other benefits which Tycoon subscribers receive:

  • Notification of the stocks being researched before publication
  • Priority access to the completed reports, 24 hours before everyone else
  • Up to sixty (60) minutes per month consultancy time with our researchers

Q: How many reports do I receive for an annual Tycoon subscription?

You will receive at least 25 reports a year, as and when the reports are completed.

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Q: How much does an annual Tycoon subscription cost?

The launch rate is SGD$2,500pa.

Q: Does Investor Central recommend stocks?

No. We do not issue "buy" or "sell" calls on stocks. None of our reports should be seen as a solicitation to buy or sell any security.

Our job is simply to open the eyes of investors to local knowledge, and to information gaps and inconsistencies we come across.

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Q: Does Investor Central short sell?

No. Neither our company nor our staff take short positions in the companies we research, neither before nor after our research is published.

Q: Why does Investor Central just write questions, without necessarily providing answers?

We always aim to get answers from companies before we publish our research.

But due to the entrenched media culture in Southeast Asia, many companies simply ignore questions asked by investors and the media. On the few occasions companies do reply, they are either brief and incomplete, or long and just give the company line.

This does not stop us from asking - and publishing - the questions that need to be asked, irrespective of whether we receive replies from the company.

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Q: How does Investor Central decide which companies to report on?

Our universe of coverage is determined by our subscribers.

We only report on companies they have nominated by entering the relevant stock codes into their watch lists. On occasion this means we don't cover some very large companies, and we do cover some very small ones.

After signing up you may nominate up to ten (10) stocks for us to cover.

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Q: Which markets does Investor Central cover?

We currently cover Singapore Exchange (SGX) and Bursa Malaysia listed companies.

Q: Does Investor Central provide advisory services?

No. We are not financial advisors.

However, as a Tycoon subscriber you will be able to book up to sixty (60) minutes with our Executive Editor Mark Laudi, and our researchers/reporters, to ask specific questions or provide you with additional local insights into the companies you are interested in.

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Q: Does Investor Central get paid to write about the companies it covers?

No. All Investor Central revenue is sourced from subscribers through subscription and licensing fees, and arms-length online advertising managed by third-party ad exchanges.

Q: Does Investor Central stand to benefit in any way, other than subscriptions and advertising revenue?

No. We do not provide investment banking, broking or other commercial services which might compromise the credibility of our reports.

In the unlikely event a conflict arises in the future we will disclose it.

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Q: Who else has access to Investor Central research?

Investor Central Tycoon is the top level of our research, and includes all the information we source.

Abbreviated versions appear on Yahoo! Finance, the website of the Securities Investors Association (Singapore) and The Malay Mail. This demonstrates there is strong demand for our research, but our articles on these sites do not include all our research.

For example, our research published on Yahoo! Finance includes just the first two questions of our reports, and no additional information.

Tycoon subscribers are alerted to the companies we are researching before we publish, and we publish Tycoon reports 24 hours before shorter versions are published through our retail channels.

Q: Does Investor Central source any non-public information?

While Investor Central primarily researches public disclosures, its great strength lies in its local knowledge, to help investors outside of Asia get a real feel for the company, and the culture and environment it operates in.

Further, we augment our research with relationship maps by Handshakes.

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Q: How are you different from financial news organisations?

There are a lot of news organisations which report from a top-down perspective, or give a superficial summary of the official news that companies disclose. Our focus is on information that they are not disclosing. We dig deeper for more information that investors need to make an informed investment.

We don't just rehash press releases.

Q: What are the benefits of a Tycoon subscription to an investment banking company based in the US or Europe?

We recognise that not all companies have the ability to hop on a plane and see the companies for themselves.

Our advantage is local knowledge and cultural understanding.

While they may have access to a lot of sell-side analyst reports, we give them a sober, candid view of the company, without the hype.

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