In a 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 Anric Blatt in Aspen, Colorado, USA.
From where and how do you get your daily general news updates?
This is probably one of my pet peeves right now. I can see in almost a matrix-like source code how the media is manipulating, twisting and fabricating “facts” to get access and control to your eyeballs, mine too, and that true journalism is almost dead. I have a curated feed of Twitter sources, ten that I agree with and ten that I don’t agree with but respect nevertheless and just wrote a little script that delivers that to me in one email every morning. But I only open it after I have done my “thinking time” and creative time and have had at least two coﬀees. Trust me, don’t deliver bad news to Anric without coﬀee ﬂowing through his veins – people get hurt. Other than that, ZeroHedge, Epoch Times and One America News.
What do you do to unwind on a weekend?
DIY projects, build stuﬀ, rebuild stuﬀ, ﬁx things. Basically, the same things I do in my work, just not with asset managers, but timber, machinery and electronics.
Can you name a great book you have recently read?
Absolutely. “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life” by Mark Manson. Most of us struggle throughout our lives by giving too many fucks in situations where fucks do not deserve to be given. That results in you and me not having enough time, energy and appetite left for the few things in life that you should give a fuck about that will actually move the needle. It’s brilliant – but my all-time favourite is still “The Greatest Salesman in the World” is a phenomenal book, written by Og Mandino. I have read it over 100 times.
Your soundtrack of choice?
Laugh all you like, but I got stuck in the 1980s after which very little new good music came out. The other day, faithfully assisted by a few bottles of Malbec, or was it Barolo, I made my dream list – 80 of the best songs from the 80s and as with my asset manager selection, for a new one to get on the list, another has to be retired, which makes it very tough and the list keeps getting better.
What drink do you start the day with and what drink ﬁnishes it?
The quality of my life is directly proportional to the amount of value I can add to asset managers between coﬀee at six and red wine at nine. Easy.
What gives you energy?
When I ﬁgured this out, everything changed. You see life, dreams, goals, everything is not linear, it’s circular. Let me explain: when you ﬁnally achieve your goals, or get that Gulfstream or get that job, etc. – it all seems rather empty when you get there because we are focused on completion, not realising that by the time you achieve your goal, you don’t really want it anymore because you’ve already moved on. And when I realised that the magic word is “progress”, progress makes you happy, fulﬁlled, gives you true self conﬁdence and gives you energy to wake up and go back to work, back to the ﬁght. When you focus on progress instead of anything else, your mind hacks your energy and the fact that you are getting progress ﬁres you up in eight diﬀerent categories.
How do you stay grounded and focused as a person in these turbulent and fast-changing times?
Easy – just focus on adding value by helping people. It’s addictive and makes you realise that there is so much out there that needs ﬁxing. If you think about it – what do entrepreneurs do? They ﬁx things that are broken, so I just focus on that. Especially when looking in the mirror, there is so much work to do on myself, but the best way I know is to help others.
Can you name a terriﬁc restaurant that you love?
If you’ve seen my belt size, there’s obviously more than one – and it’s not a fair question. In Asia, it’s The Chinnery at the Mandarin in Hong Kong. In Europe, it’s a little mom and pop shop called St. Antonio on the shore of our lake Lago d’Orta. They even built a boat dock for me, I love those guys. In America, it’s downstairs, my wife is a better chef than anyone, even Bobby Flay. In Africa, it’s The Carnivore in Nairobi. Need I continue?
What’s your favourite museum in the world?
Shoot me if you like, but it’s a tie between the “Night Watch”, a 1642 painting by Rembrandt which is displayed in the Rijksmuseum and The Schlumpf collection, a.k.a. La cité de l’automobile, in Mulhouse, France.
Are you active on social media and what do you actually use it for?
Oh, yes. It’s a love-hate, but I just hacked it and created a Weekly Content Value Multiplier. Check it out, I recorded it on Youtube for you: https://youtu.be/_vsOm-B3RV4
Do you have any secret guilty pleasure that you are prepared to reveal here?
That list is so long, but my top three are: 1) Watching shuﬄe dance videos on TikTok, 2) Learning how to ﬁx absolutely anything with the help of some guy on YouTube, and 3) Taking excessive pictures of my Golden Retrievers.
What kind of battle dress do you normally put on for work?
I refuse to wear suits anymore – I have 200 Hermès ties that will never see daylight again. Now it’s jeans, cowboy boots and shirts by Ascot Chang, my old tailor in Hong Kong who I miss very much.
Do you celebrate your wins? If so, how?
Absolutely, you’re talking to the guy that ﬁnds something to learn from and celebrate when stepping in dog poop. It’s all about ﬁnding the joy, ﬁnding the positive and learning from bad stuﬀ.
What makes you happy?
Mea culpa coming: Leos are the most generous creatures on earth, all we need is a little recognition, a little respect and one person that adores you. That’s enough to make us happy and keep on giving 99% of the time. So when someone acknowledges and appreciates what I have done or delivered, it makes me happier than a new Mercedes (which also makes me happy).