In a new series of interviews conducted by Hedge Funds Club boss Stefan Nilsson, we are aiming to get under the skin of interesting people related to the hedge fund industry. The interviews focus on the people and the good life. Here’s our chat with Invast Global CEO Gavin White in Sydney.
From where and how do you get your daily general news updates?
News apps on my phone. Sydney Morning Herald, AFR and FT while online. CNBC on the screens while in the office. My kids ensure I’m on top of all the latest celebrity and reality TV news.
What do you do to unwind on a weekend?
We live next to a National Park, so my wife and I hike most weekends. We also take our dogs on the beaches south of Sydney. I played a few seasons of over-45 soccer. After playing a lot of rugby and other sports all my life, I had a supreme, naïve confidence that I would be good at soccer. I wasn’t.
Can you name a great book you have recently read?
Yuval Noah Harari has been a favourite. I preferred “Sapiens” to “Homo Deus”. I need to read them both again – too many ideas to remember! “Stealing Fire” by Steven Kotler and Jamie Wheal is an interesting read. The authors put forward some radical theories and support them with a stream of entertaining and often quite shocking anecdotes. I’m currently halfway through my second read of “A Universe from Nothing” by Lawrence M. Krauss. Even on my second read, I’m not sure I’m following all the concepts fully, but I’m sort of keeping up.
What is your soundtrack of choice?
Midnight Oil (“Bird Noises” and “10, 9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1”), Cold Chisel (“Breakfast at Sweethearts” and “East”), The Cure, Powderfinger, Hunters & Collectors, Split Enz, Australian Crawl.
What drink do you start the day with and what drink finishes it?
Water for both.
What gives you energy?
Having a goal.
How do you stay grounded and focused as a person in these turbulent and fast-changing times?
I’m not sure I always do! The key for me is to try not to let myself get too high or too low. A career in trading teaches you that pretty quickly and very deeply.
Can you name a terrific restaurant that you love?
My wife and I love Café Sydney, on the balcony overlooking Sydney Harbour. On a blue-sky day or a starry night, there is nowhere better. Luke’s Oyster Bar and Chophouse in Singapore is also a favourite. The food and staff are excellent.
What’s your favourite museum in the world?
Pompeii. It’s a museum of sorts. I love history, but I’m not a frequent visitor to museums. We recently toured the ruins of Pompeii with a local archaeologist guide and it was the most amazing experience.
Are you active on social media and what do you actually use it for?
I’m active on LinkedIn. I don’t post anything, but I read a lot on my feed and I “like” and comment. Apart from interacting with connections, I find it to be a great source of information about factors affecting the industry – regulatory changes, competitors, new products, etc.
Do you have any secret guilty pleasure that you are prepared to reveal here?
FIFA 2020 on Xbox. It’s not really a secret, my wife and kids know all about it.
What kind of battle dress do you normally put on for work?
Business suit, white shirt, polished shoes – and occasionally a tie.
Do you celebrate your wins? If so, how?
You absolutely MUST celebrate your wins … briefly.
What makes you happy?
My wife and I have been friends since we were teens. She makes me happy. Oh – and the kids. Occasionally. And the dogs, of course, definitely the dogs.