March 24, 2021

#23 Upholdings: Launching the Compound Kings ETF and Building an Investment Process | Robert Cantwell, Founder & CIO

#23 Upholdings: Launching the Compound Kings ETF and Building an Investment Process | Robert Cantwell, Founder & CIO

Robert Cantwell is Founder of Upholdings, the first hedge fund in the U.S. to convert into an ETF. In this episode, Robert and Daniel discuss the evolution of ETFs, why operators make the best investors, and the investment process behind Upholdings’ Compound Kings (KNGS) ETF.


“I think the best investors are operators and the best operators are investors.” – Robert Cantwell

In this episode of Outliers, I’m talking with Robert Cantwell about the world of modern ETFs, how great investors tend to think like founders, and why blockchain is his latest investment interest.

Robert Cantwell is the Founder of Upholdings, the first hedge fund in the U.S. to convert into an ETF with the launch of Compound Kings (KNGS). Robert started his career as an Analyst at Elevation Partners, which was co-founded by U2’s lead singer Bono. He then worked at the long/short hedge fund Meru Capital before serving as Everlane’s CFO for 5 years. Robert founded Upholdings in 2019 and launched Compound Kings (KNGS) in 2020. To date, Compound Kings has dramatically outperformed the S&P 500.

Show notes with links, quotes, and a transcript of the episode: https://www.danielscrivner.com/notes/robert-cantwell-outliers-show-notes 

Chapters in this interview:

  • 00:00:37 – Robert’s thoughts on the evolving ETF space
  • 00:04:12 – Why a concentrated portfolio is important
  • 00:10:19 – Robert’s business background that led him to found Upholdings
  • 00:15:10 – Robert’s experience with Elevation Partners working with Bono
  • 00:19:47 – Lessons learned as an investor vs. an operator
  • 00:24:43 – Background on Compound Kings (KNGS)
  • 00:32:27 – On share repurchases
  • 00:37:58 – Inspiring investors
  • 00:39:55 – On investing in Palm earlier in his career
  • 00:44:21 – Why now is the worst time to invest in technology and innovation, aside from blockchain
  • 00:51:49 – Why the best investors are operators and the best operators are investors
  • 01:00:55 – Misconceptions about Chinese technology companies
  • 01:13:50 – Upholdings’ investment process
  • 01:18:53 – Mandates and regulations around ETFs
  • 01:21:58 – Robert’s advice to investors

 

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