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The Experience

If you’re into brutal honesty, war stories about investing screw-ups, and making learning fun (again?), then going to Real Vision’s Festival of Learning 2021 is an easy “f*ck yeah.”

Thousands attended online to learn from the world’s best investors and thinkers, chat in the on-fire Slack channels and connect with people united under the banner ‘The Learning Tribe.’

Real Vision’s Festival of Learning is Burning Man for capitalists. SXSW for investors. Or as 2020 festival-goer Andy C. called it, “The Coachella for Finance.”

Featured Headliners

Howard Marks

What does 10 months locked down together during a pandemic do? When you’re Howard Marks (Oaktree Capital) and his son Andrew (TQ Ventures), it led to an intergenerational learning exchange that we’d kill to be a fly on the wall for. But we don’t need to – Real Vision are honored to announce that Howard and Andrew will be taking their conversation to the Main Stage at the Festival of Learning.

Daniel Kahneman

We’re incredibly proud to welcome Daniel Kahneman – the Nobel Prize winner, the Godfather of Behavioral Economics, the man whose work Richard Thaler said “has to be viewed as one of the most important accomplishments of 20th century science” – to the Festival of Learning. On June 24, Mr. Kahneman will be interviewed by Lux Capital’s Josh Wolfe. They will then be joined by economist and historian Niall Ferguson for a special chat. These three heavy-weight intellects are going to bring the house down…

Niall Ferguson

Following the publication of his latest masterpiece, Doom: The Politics of Catastrophe, historian and economist Niall Ferguson will chat with Lux Capital’s Josh Wolfe at the Festival. Oh, and he will also be taking part in a roundtable with Josh and Daniel Kahneman, which – is there such a thing as TOO much intellectual firepower in one room?








Festival of Learning 2021

Main Stage

Wait But… How? Stage

Main Stage

Over 3 days, The Main Stage played host to legendary thinkers including Niall Ferguson and Howard Marks, while investing rock stars took attendees on a journey of discovery through their investing process and what makes them tick.

Wait But… How? Stage

Wait but… How do I manage risk? How does the business cycle work? How do I generate investment ideas? How do options work? This stage focused on the practicalities – and was guided by Lakshman Achuthan, and Mike Green, and more.

Tent of Enlightenment

I F*cked Up Tent

Tent of Enlightenment

Step through Real Vision’s Doors of Perception and expand your mind with new ways of thinking about learning, changing, growing, and more.

I F*cked Up Tent

Everybody loved hanging out in The I F*cked Up Tent… with rock stars like Jason Buck, Mish Schneider, Tom Thornton, and more turning the airwaves blue…!

Festival Launches In...

The Festival of Learning Agenda

All times are US Eastern Time (EDT)

What People Said About Festival of Learning...

“Amazing line-up! This is a game-changer – and for everybody to access, not just institutional investors – really a disruption.”

– Stefano S.

“I’m a trader from Dallas. I bought the RV Pro membership and have learned so much. It was a lot of money for me but well worth it. I loved the Festival of Learning.

– Kevin McN.

“This conference could be one of those seminal landmarks in the history of finance.”

– Daniel A.

“Extraordinary! World class applied experience being articulated from some of the most elite people in finance. Nothing remotely like this or even a fraction of it available anywhere in the world.”

– Shane T.

So glad I upgraded to continue my learning journey. Amazing content. Epic work team Real Vision.”

– Matt P.

“I’ve found more educational value in the Crypto Gathering and Festival of Learning than I did in entire college semesters…”

– Jake

“Real Vision is becoming something iconic in the world of financial education.

– Adrian D.

“Thanks Raoul and Real Vision team. Really great and innovative source for learning. Very refreshing format and approach. Best money I’ve spent for a while.

– Tom E.

“Just finished up the Festival of Learning Happy Hour. The perfect way to close out the best Real Vision event to date. Brilliant.”

– Xavier M.

The FAQs

The questions we always get asked most are…

  1. What if I can’t attend live?

You can watch back anytime, anywhere, anyhow you like. Once you have a ticket to the Festival, you have lifetime access to the Festival.

  1. Can I just watch it on the Real Vision website without registering?

Nope – you need to have a ticket.

The Festival of Learning is a lot of things, but here’s two of them:

  1. It gives The Learning Tribe (that’s you) access to the world’s best investors and thinkers in a way that simply isn’t possible at in-person events.
  2. It makes learning fun again. Where else could you learn from the world’s greatest investors, uncensored and unchecked? Where else is failure celebrated because that’s what leads to success? Where else does Hugh Hendry still do his session even though he has a concussion? (Wait, that was last year).
  3. Okay, here’s a third – it’s a gathering of incredible people both on stage and in the festival Slack community. When the Learning Tribe gets together, magic happens. And a lot of laughs, too.


You’re an Essential member? You can upgrade to Real Vision Plus at a discount and get your Festival of Learning ticket free.

You’re a Real Vision Plus or Pro member? You go free – It’s included in your membership.

Real Vision Crypto members, and non-Real Vision members: A 3-day ticket costs $499, through June 22, after which time the walk-up price is $599.

And you can add on a full year of Real Vision Plus membership, which costs $599, for exactly zero dollars.

As this is an educational event, we are also offering special student pricing. Please email for details.

We’re working hard to finalize the full agenda and will be sharing it very soon.

Your ticket includes full access to The Festival of Learning, access to our Festival Slack channels, and post-event access to the sessions (subject to speaker permission), reading lists, and more.

And if you join Real Vision Plus too, you also get a full year of access to real, in-depth analysis from real experts, to help you capitalize on what you learn at the Festival and gain a deeper understanding of finance, business, and the global economy. Oh, and a s*it ton of educational masterclasses and tutorials, too.

We don’t offer refunds but you can transfer standalone tickets to a colleague or friend. Any ticket transfers must be made at least 24 hours before the event starts.

Absolutely – the Wait, But… How? Stage will give you an actionable crash-course education in some of the most important concepts in investing and finance. The Main Stage will take you deep into the thinking of some of the world’s best investors. The I F*cked Up Tent will teach you what not to do, while the Tent of Enlightenment will expand your mind on how investing fits into your life.

The Festival is suitable for investors of all levels. And thinkers. And the Learning Tribe. It’s educational and celebratory all at once, and yes – those two things do fit together.

Looks like you didn’t open the first question first…

No problem. Once you have a ticket, you’ll be able to watch the sessions whenever you want, wherever you want (subject to speaker permission). This is also an important addition for those who can attend live, as we’re fitting a LOT in over three days…)

About The Festival of Learning

In 2020, Real Vision dreamed up The Festival of Learning.

We didn’t want to do much – just revolutionize online learning, bring thousands of people together, and somehow make an online event feel like a real festival. No big deal.

More than 5,000 people joined us to learn from rock stars like Niall Ferguson, Michael Lewis, Hugh Hendry, and more. And it was phenomenal.

Now, The Festival of Learning is back. And we have so much more in store for you…

…And What is Real Vision?

Real Vision is an on-demand finance and education platform you can watch basically anywhere (mobile, desktop, smart TV).

We’re on a mission to democratize access to financial intelligence. And we help you understand the complex world of finance, business and the global economy with real in-depth analysis from real experts.

The 290,000+ Real Vision members get a competitive edge like no other on the planet…

Daniel Kahneman

Professor Emeritus of Psychology and Public Affairs, Princeton University

Daniel Kahneman is Professor Emeritus of Psychology and Public Affairs at Princeton. He is best known for his work with Amos Tversky on human judgment and decision making, for which he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics in 2002. Kahneman has also studied a number of other topics including attention, the memory of experiences, well-being, counterfactual thinking, and behavioral economics. His book Thinking, Fast and Slow, which appeared in 2010, has sold more than seven million copies worldwide. A new book titled Noise (with Olivier Sibony and Cass Sunstein), published in May 2021, was a New York Times best-seller.

Kahneman’s honors include, among others, the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences (2002), the Presidential Medal of Freedom (2013), the Distinguished Lifetime Career Contribution of the American Psychological Association, the Grawemeyer Prize in Psychology (with Amos Tversky), and the Thomas Schelling Award for contributions to policy. He holds honorary degrees from Harvard, Yale, Cambridge, the Sorbonne and several other Universities.

Howard Marks, CFA

Oaktree Capital Management, Co-Chairman

Since the formation of Oaktree in 1995, Mr. Marks has been responsible for ensuring the firm’s adherence to its core investment philosophy; communicating closely with clients concerning products and strategies; and contributing his experience to big-picture decisions relating to investments and corporate direction.

From 1985 until 1995, Mr. Marks led the groups at The TCW Group, Inc. that were responsible for investments in distressed debt, high yield bonds, and convertible securities. He was also Chief Investment Officer for Domestic Fixed Income at TCW. Previously, Mr. Marks was with Citicorp Investment Management for 16 years, where from 1978 to 1985 he was Vice President and senior portfolio manager in charge of convertible and high yield securities. Between 1969 and 1978, he was an equity research analyst and, subsequently, Citicorp’s Director of Research.

Mr. Marks holds a B.S.Ec. degree cum laude from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania with a major in finance and an M.B.A. in accounting and marketing from the Booth School of Business of the University of Chicago, where he received the George Hay Brown Prize. He is a CFA® charterholder.

Mr. Marks is a Trustee and Chairman of the Investment Committee at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. He is a member of the Investment Committee of the Royal Drawing School and is Professor of Practice at King’s Business School (both in London). He serves on the Shanghai International Financial Advisory Council and the Advisory Board of Duke Kunshan University. He is an Emeritus Trustee of the University of Pennsylvania, where from 2000 to 2010 he chaired the Investment Board.

Andrew Marks

TQ Ventures, Co-Founder and Partner

Andrew is Co-Founder and Partner at TQ Ventures, a venture capital fund focused on partnering with extraordinary technology founders at the earliest stages.

TQ has backed over 40 companies across the US and Europe in the seed and series A rounds, including Ro, Popshop Live, Portal One, Liquid IV, Lunchclub and Kindbody. Prior to founding TQ, Andrew spent a decade investing in public and private markets at Freemark Partners, Blue Ridge Capital and the Blackstone Group.

Andrew graduated magna cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania with a B.A. in Politics, Philosophy and Economics.

Peter Brandt

Factor LLC, CEO

Peter L. Brandt entered the commodity trading business in 1976 with ContiCommodity Services, a division of Continental Grain Company. From his start in the commodity industry, Peter’s goal was to trade proprietary funds. But, he first needed to learn the business. From 1976 through 1979, Peter handled large institutional accounts for Conti, including Campbell Soup Company, Oro Wheat, Godiva Chocolate, Swanson Foods, Homestake Mining and others. In 1980, Peter founded Factor Trading Co., Inc. In his capacity as CEO, Peter was primarily engaged in trading proprietary capital. Factor Trading also produced market research and managed the trading activities of several large institutional clients. Among Peter’s institutional trading clients was Commodities  Corporation (“CC”) of Princeton, NJ, at the time one of the world’s largest trading houses. In 1990, Peter published his first book, titled Trading Commodity Futures with Classical Chart Patterns. In 2011, John Wiley and Sons published Peter’s 2nd book, Diary of a Professional Commodity Trader. The book became Amazon’s #1 ranked book on trading for 27 weeks. His first book, Trading Commodity Futures with Classical Chart Patterns, was published in 1990, is considered a classic by many traders.

Niall Ferguson

Historian // Economist

Niall Ferguson, MA, DPhil, FRSE, is the Milbank Family Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University, and a senior faculty fellow of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard. He is also a visiting professor at Tsinghua University, Beijing. He is the author of sixteen books, including The Pity of War, The House of Rothschild, Empire, Civilization and Kissinger, 1923-1968: The Idealist, which won the Council on Foreign Relations Arthur Ross Prize. He is an award-making filmmaker, too, having won an international Emmy for his PBS series The Ascent of Money.

In 2020 he joined Bloomberg Opinion as a columnist. In addition, he is the founder and managing director of Greenmantle LLC, a New York-based advisory firm, a co-founding board member of Ualá, a Latin American financial technology company, and a trustee of the New York Historical Society and the London-based Centre for Policy Studies. His most recent book, The Square and the Tower, was published in the U.S. in 2018, and was a New York Times bestseller. Athree-part television adaptation, Niall Ferguson’s Networld, aired on PBS in March 2020. His most recent book, Doom: The Politics of Catastrophe, has just been published by Penguin.

Kyle Bass

Hayman Capital, Founder & CIO

J. Kyle Bass is the Founder and Chief Investment Officer of Hayman Capital Management, an investment manager of private funds focused on global event-driven opportunities.

Mr. Bass is a founding member of the Committee on the Present Danger: China. Mr. Bass was the recipient of the 2019 Foreign Policy Association Medal for his responsible internationalism and is a current member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Mr. Bass has testified as an expert witness before the U.S. House of Representatives, U.S. Senate, and the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission.

In 2015, Bass was recognized as one of the Top 25 Most Influential People in the Global Patent Market as named by Intellectual Asset Management magazine. Mr. Bass has lectured on global economics at various universities, including Columbia, Harvard, Stanford, UC Berkeley, University of Chicago, University of Texas, and the University of Virginia. Mr. Bass is the former Chair of the Risk Committee of the Board of Directors of the University of Texas Investment Management Company (UTIMCO), which manages approximately $50 billion.

Before forming Hayman, Mr. Bass was a Managing Director at Legg Mason and a Senior Managing Director at Bear Stearns. He graduated from Texas Christian University with a degree in finance. Mr. Bass serves on the board of the Texas Department of Public Safety Foundation, Melinda’s Foods, and Ionic Security. Mr. Bass also serves on the advisory board of Predata, a machine learning and predictive analytics platform.

Isaiah Jackson

Best-selling Author Bitcoin and Black America // Host of Community Crypto, CoinDesk TV

Isaiah Jackson is the best-selling author of, ​Bitcoin and Black America​ and host of “Community Crypto” on Coindesk TV. He is an award-winning speaker and educator that ​travels the world teaching investors and financial groups about Bitcoin and blockchain technology. ​His work has been featured in Forbes, CNBC, Vogue, and Black Enterprise.

He is a native of Charlotte, NC, and a NC State University alumnus.

Bitcoin and Black America is a dynamic new book that explores the synergy between black economics, Bitcoin, and blockchain technology. The global financial system is changing and the digital revolution will not be televised.

We explore how to incorporate cryptocurrency in your business, job, and educational institution. This book also outlines the need for separation from the racist banking system and a comprehensive list of black professionals actively working in the Blockchain industry.

Community Crypto is a new show on Coindesk TV that empowers a global community with local crypto meetup groups. We explore groups in the U.S. and abroad to show creative ways cryptocurrency can be beneficial. The initial air date is February 2021.

Lakshman Achuthan

ECRI, Co-Founder

Lakshman Achuthan is the co-founder of ECRI. He also serves as the managing editor of ECRI-produced forecasting publications. Over nearly 30 years of analyzing business cycles, he has been regularly featured in the business and financial media, and as an invited speaker at a number of conferences. In 2004, he co-authored “Beating the Business Cycle: How to Predict and Profit from Turning Points in the Economy“.

Achuthan met his mentor, Geoffrey H. Moore, in 1990 and was immediately fascinated by Moore’s unique approach to analyzing business cycles. After working together for years, with co-founder Anirvan Banerji, the three left Columbia University to start ECRI in 1996.

Achuthan serves on the Board of Governors for the Levy Economics Institute of Bard College, and as a trustee for several foundations.

Mike Green

Simplify Asset Management, Portfolio Manager and Chief Strategist

Michael has been a student of markets and market structure, for nearly 30 years. His proprietary research into the shift from actively managed portfolios and investment funds to systematic passive investment strategies has been presented to the Federal Reserve, the BIS, the IMF and numerous other industry groups and associations.

Michael joined Simplify in April 2021 after serving as Chief Strategist and Portfolio Manager for Logica Capital Advisers, LLC.  Prior to Logica, Michael managed macro strategies at Thiel Macro, LLC, an investment firm that manages the personal capital of Peter Thiel. Prior to Thiel, Michael founded Ice Farm Capital, a discretionary global macro hedge fund seeded by Soros Fund Management. From 2006-2014, Michael founded and managed the New York office of Canyon Capital Advisors, a $23B multi-strategy hedge fund based in Los Angeles, CA, where he established their global macro strategies, managing in excess of $5B of exposure across equity, credit, FX, commodity and derivative markets.

In addition to his work as a market theorist and portfolio manager, Michael has been noted for his work as a public speaker and financial media participant. He is a graduate of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and a CFA holder.

Raoul Pal

Real Vision, Co-Founder & CEO

Raoul Pal is the Co-Founder and CEO of Real Vision, the world’s pre-eminent financial media platform, which helps members understand the complex world of finance, business, and the global economy. Real Vision members also have access to Real Vision Crypto, a cryptocurrency and digital assets video channel watched by over 235,000 people. 

In addition, Raoul has been publishing Global Macro Investor since January 2005 to provide original, high quality, quantifiable and easily readable research for the global macro investment community hedge funds, family offices, pension funds and sovereign wealth funds. It draws on his considerable 31 years of experience in advising hedge funds and managing a global macro hedge fund. Global Macro Investor has one of the very best, proven track records of any newsletter in the industry, producing extremely positive returns in eight out of the last twelve years.

He retired from managing client money at the age of 36 in 2004 and now lives in the tiny Caribbean island of Little Cayman in the Cayman Islands. Previously he co-managed the GLG Global Macro Fund in London for GLG Partners, one of the largest hedge fund groups in the world. Raoul moved to GLG from Goldman Sachs where he co-managed the hedge fund sales business in Equities and Equity Derivatives in Europe. In this role, Raoul established strong relationships with many of the world’s pre-eminent hedge funds, learning from their styles and experiences. Other stop-off points on the way were NatWest Markets and HSBC, although he began his career by training traders in technical analysis.

Denise Shull, MA

ReThink Group, Founder, Performance & Strategy Advisor

Denise Shull’s Wall Street career began in 1994 when she joined one of the first electronic trading firms in Chicago. She then traded at Schonfeld Securities before she was recruited to move to New York to run her own desk at Sharpe Capital.

In 2003, an academic journal published her pioneering University of Chicago master’s thesis “The Neurobiology of Freud’s Repetition Compulsion.” This led Denise to discover the then emerging research indicating that, contrary to popular belief, emotion is required for perception, judgment and decision making.

She founded The ReThink Group in 2006 to apply this radical finding to the problem of market and risk decision making. The Shull Method, based on modern psychoanalysis and the science of anticipatory affect, is outlined in her 2012 book, Market Mind Games: A Radical Psychology of Investing, Trading and Risk which has been reviewed as the “best of its genre” and a “veritable Rosetta Stone of trading psychology.”

In 2016, Ms Shull’s consulting company added professional athletes to their client roster and today also work with Broadway Directors and Sports Agents as well as investing firms.

Josh Wolfe

Lux Capital, Co-Founder & Managing Partner

Josh co-founded Lux Capital in NYC and Menlo Park to support scientists and entrepreneurs who pursue counter-conventional solutions to the most vexing puzzles of our time. Josh is a Director at Shapeways (3D printing), Strateos (robotic and digital pathology), Kymeta (making cutting-edge technology for high-speed satellite and space communications), Varda Space Industries (manufacturing in low and zero gravity space), and Variant (developing therapies that will improve global health by studying the genes of people with exceptional health-related traits). Josh helped lead many of the firm’s investments across cutting-edge technologies including Anduril (defense), Hadrian (aerospace manufacturing), Resilience (biopharma manufacturing) Kurion (high-tech nuclear waste remediation, acquired by Veolia), Kallyope (gut-brain axis), and CTRL-Labs (brain-machine interface acquired by Facebook).

Josh is a published scientist and Westinghouse semi-finalist. Before founding Lux, Josh worked in investment banking at Salomon Smith Barney, in capital markets at Merrill Lynch, and published AIDS-immunopathology research in Cell Vision & The Journal of Leukocyte Biology. Josh has been a columnist and editor with Forbes. He has been invited to The White House and Capitol Hill to advise on emerging technologies, and a lecturer at MIT, Harvard, Yale, Cornell, Columbia, and NYU. He is a Trustee of the Santa Fe Institute, has been a term member at The Council on Foreign Relations, and Chairman of Coney Island Prep charter school, where he grew up in Brooklyn. He graduated from Cornell University with a B.S. in Economics and Finance.

Jared Dillian

Editor, The Daily Dirtnap

Jared Dillian is the editor of The Daily Dirtnap, a daily market newsletter for investment professionals, continuously published since 2008. He graduated from the United States Coast Guard Academy in 1996 with a B.S. in Mathematics and Computer Science, and from the University of San Francisco in 2001 with a Masters in Business Administration, concentration in Finance.

Jared worked for a small floor market maker on the Pacific Options Exchange from 1999-2000 and was a trader for Lehman Brothers from 2001 to 2008, specializing in index arbitrage and ETF trading. He is also the author of STREET FREAK: Money And Madness At Lehman Brothers, which was named Businessweek’s #1 general business book of 2011, and the novel ALL THE EVIL OF THIS WORLD, published in 2016. Additionally, Jared was an adjunct professor in the business program at Coastal Carolina University.

Jared is also a regular contributor at Mauldin Economics, and a columnist at Bloomberg Opinion, and previously contributed to Forbes and His media appearances include MSNBC, Fox Business, Bloomberg TV, BNN, The New York Times, LA Times, Business Insider, Marketwatch, Yahoo! Finance, and dozens of local and syndicated radio programs. From 2019-2021, he was the host of The Jared Dillian Show, a nationally syndicated radio show on personal finance, and is now the host of the Be Smart podcast. In his spare time, Jared is a progressive house DJ and speaks frequently on mental health issues at financial institutions.

Brent Johnson

Santiago Capital, CEO

Brent Johnson brings over twenty years of experience in the financial markets to his position as CEO of Santiago Capital where he manages $175mm for High Net Worth families via separately managed accounts and a private fund. 

Brent enjoyed more than nine years as a Managing Director at BakerAvenue Asset Management, a $2 Billion Asset Manager and Wealth Management firm, with offices in San Francisco, Dallas and New York.  He was the lead advisor for several of the firms largest clients. 

Before joining BakerAvenue, Brent spent nine years at Credit Suisse in their private client group. He got his start as part of the training program at Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette (DLJ) in New York prior to moving to San Francisco. He joined Credit Suisse in the fall of 2000 when the bank purchased DLJ.

Earlier in his career, Brent was a financial auditor for Philip Morris Management Company in New York City where he performed audits at the company’s headquarters as well as subsidiaries in Germany, Hong Kong, and Richmond, Virginia.

Brent regularly gives interviews and speaks at conferences regarding precious metals, currency markets & macroeconomic trends.  His views have been quoted in numerous print, online and television outlets. He lives in San Juan, Puerto Rico with his wife Mary and son Moses. 


Dr. Pippa Malmgren

Partner Monaco Foundry, Former Economic Advisor to President George W. Bush

Dr. Pippa Malmgren is a former Presidential Advisor, Chief Currency Strategist, and Deputy Head of Global Strategy for global banks.

She has been nominated for the National Technology Awards in 2020 and named a Most Influential Woman in Tech by AccelerateHer and We Are Tech Women. She is also a best-selling author of award-winning Books including: Geopolitics for Investors (2015), Signals: How Everyday Signs Help Us Navigate the World’s Turbulent Economy, a crowd-funded best-seller (2016), and The Leadership LAB: Understanding Leadership in the 21st Century (2018) a bestseller which was an FT Business Book of the Month and named Business Book of the Year and Best Book on Leadership in 2019.

She gave the commencement addresses at the London School of Economics in 2013 and 2016 and lectures at Sandhurst, INSEAD, Duke Fuqua Global Executive MBA. She has also lectured at U Texas Austin and Tsinghua University. Makes regular appearances as a guest anchor on CNBC and a commentator on the BBC including The Today Program, Newsnight, Hard Talk, and on Monocle Radio.

Jason Buck

Mutiny Fund, CIO

Jason Buck is an entrepreneur and trader specializing in volatility, options hedging, and portfolio construction.

After living through 2008 as a commercial real estate developer, Jason became focused on how investors could better manage their risk. He spent the following decade consulting on portfolio construction and building bespoke long volatility strategies for family offices and high net worth individuals.

This experience in cross asset class trading spotlighted the need to create a diversified long volatility and tail risk fund designed to hedge the risks associated with economic downturns.

A former D1 soccer player and IMG academy graduate, Jason currently resides in Napa Valley, California.

Damian Horner

Real Vision, Co-Founder & Chief Creative Officer

After studying Psychology, Damian began his career in Advertising and Design.
He worked at some of the biggest agencies in Europe before co-founding a creative hotshop where he won multiple awards, was listed as one of ‘The 100 Most Influential People in Media’ and even worked with Damien Hirst on a campaign that was later exhibited at the Tate Modern Gallery.

In his spare time he also curated a major exhibition at The Design Museum in London.

Following the sale of his agency to a major global network, Damian spent a year travelling through the French Canals to Spain with his young family in a wooden boat.
He co-wrote the story of their adventure with his wife – and their book was published internationally (hardback and paperback) by Orion.

Damian lived in Spain for ten years and from that base he worked globally as a marketing strategist with clients such as Microsoft and Universal Records. He also worked in the book industry where he is particularly well-known for his strategies for many famous authors including JK Rowling, Lee Child, Jodi Picoult and Stephen King.

Damian was also part of the core team that conceived ‘Belgravia’ the multi-media story app developed with Julian Fellowes of Downton Abbey fame. This was subsequently turned into a successful novel and television series.

Damian then went on to conceive and develop an award-winning, No.1 gaming app that was highlighted by Apple for its revolutionary and genre-bending approach.

Now Damian is the Co-Founder and Chief Creative Officer of Real Vision.

Real Vision is a disruptive financial media brand, created to help investors understand the complex world of finance, business and the global economy, with in-depth analysis from real experts.

The video platform delivers exclusive, long-form interviews, research, documentaries and analysis from impossible to access guests and the sharpest minds in global finance.

There is also written research and a range of live events held all over the world.

In addition, Real Vision is commissioned by leading financial services brands and fintech to create and distribute bespoke video content on their behalf.

Real Vision has a young, wealthy and educated audience that engages with content at levels that are unprecedented in the industry.

Corey Hoffstein

Newfound Research, Co-Founder & CIO

Corey is co-founder and Chief Investment Officer of Newfound Research, a quantitative tactical asset management firm. At Newfound, Corey is responsible for portfolio management, investment research, strategy development, and communication of the firm’s views to clients.

Corey holds a Master of Science in Computational Finance from Carnegie Mellon University and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science from Cornell University.

Jim O'Shaughnessy

O’Shaughnessy Asset Management (OSAM), Chairman & Co-CIO

Jim O’Shaughnessy is the Chairman and Co-Chief Investment Officer of O’Shaughnessy Asset Management (OSAM). As founder and Co-Chief Investment Officer of the firm, Jim is ultimately responsible for OSAM’s investment strategies. Jim is an equity owner in OSAM and a member of the firm’s Executive Committee.

Prior to founding OSAM, Jim was the Director of Systematic Equity at Bear Stearns Asset Management and a Senior Managing Director of the firm. Prior to Bear Stearns, he was the CEO and Chairman of O’Shaughnessy Capital Management (Netfolio).

Long recognized as one of America’s leading financial experts and a pioneer in quantitative equity analysis, he has been called a “world beater” and a “statistical guru” by Barron’s. In February 2009, included Jim in a series on “Legendary Investors” along with Benjamin Graham, Warren Buffett, and Peter Lynch.

Jim is the author of four books on investing. Forbes pronounced his first book Invest Like the Best “awesome” and named it one of the best financial books of the year. His next book, What Works on Wall Street, is a BusinessWeek and New York Times Business bestseller and called “An indisputable classic…downright momentous” by Financial Analysts’ Journal said it was “indisputably a major contribution to empirical research on the behavior of common stocks in the United States…conceivably, the influence of What Works on Wall Street will prove immense.”

Jim’s third book, How to Retire Rich, was a New York Times Business and BusinessWeek bestseller. Jim’s most recent book, Predicting the Markets of Tomorrow, was published in 2006. Jim was named “manager of the year” in Gordon Pape’s 2004 Buyers Guide to Mutual Funds for his management of the Royal Bank (RBC) of Canada’s O’Shaughnessy Funds, and the Canadian Investment Awards named the RBC O’Shaughnessy U.S. Value Fund “U.S. Equity Fund of the Year” in 2004 and 2005. Jim has a B.A. in Economics from the University of Minnesota.

Jim is the former Chairman of the Board of the Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center and currently serves as the Chairman of the Capital Campaign for CMS. Jim is married with three children and two grandchildren and lives in Greenwich, Connecticut.

BA-University of Minnesota

Brent Donnelly

HSBC New York, Senior FX Trader

Brent Donnelly is President of Spectra Markets. He has been trading professionally since 1995 and is the author of Alpha Trader (2021) and The Art of Currency Trading (Wiley, 2019). He writes am/FX, the must-read macro daily. Over the course of his career, he has been a market maker, trader, and senior manager at some of the top banks in foreign exchange.

Brent has extensive experience trading currencies, FX options, stock index futures, NASDAQ stocks, and commodities. He is a respected macro thinker with the unique perspective of a senior risk taker. He has been quoted by, or featured in, the Economist, Epsilon Theory, Real Vision, the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, Bloomberg, and CNBC.

Brent has been a senior FX trader at HSBC, head of G10 Spot FX Trading at Citi New York, and Managing Director and Head of FX Trading at Nomura New York. He was also a portfolio manager at a major hedge fund in Connecticut for three years.

Mark Yusko

Morgan Creek Capital Management, CEO & CIO

Mark Yusko is the Founder, CEO and Chief Investment Officer of Morgan Creek Capital Management and the Managing Partner at Morgan Creek Digital Assets. Prior to forming Morgan Creek, Mr. Yusko was President, Chief Investment Officer and Founder of UNC Management Company, the Endowment investment office for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, from 1998 to 2004.

Throughout his tenure, he directly oversaw strategic and tactical asset allocation recommendations to the Investment Fund Board, investment manager selection, manager performance evaluation, spending policy management and performance reporting. Total assets under management were $1.5 billion ($1.2 billion in endowment assets and $300 million in working capital).

Until 1998, Mr. Yusko was the Senior Investment Director for the University of Notre Dame Investment Office where he joined as the Assistant Investment Officer in October of 1993. He worked with the Chief Investment Officer in all aspects of Endowment Management.

Mr. Yusko received a BA with Honors from the University of Notre Dame and a MBA in Accounting and Finance from the University of Chicago. Mr. Yusko is an Advisory Board member of a number of private capital partnerships and alternative investment programs and has served as a consultant on alternative investments to a select group of institutions. Mr. Yusko is an Investment Committee member of the MCNC Endowment, President and Chairman of the Investment Committee of The Hesburgh-Yusko Scholars Foundation at the University of Notre Dame, and President and Head of the Investment Committee of the Morgan Creek Foundation.

Imran Lakha

Options Insight, Founder

Imran’s career began in 2001 when he joined CSFB as a graduate. He was a trainee on the Exotic Equity Derivatives desk and fortunate enough to have some extremely smart and experienced mentors who saw his potential and taught him a great deal. After the first couple of training years, Imran joined the Vanilla Index Options Flow desk as a market-maker. Over the next 4 years he became one of the top performing junior traders.

Throughout this period, many graduates and interns spent time on the desk and Imran discovered that he really enjoyed teaching them and that they, in turn, appreciated having someone take the time and effort to give them a full understanding of the job.

2007 brought a move to Merrill Lynch to run the FTSE Index Flow book. After successfully trading through the financial crisis of 2008, Imran became Head of the European Index Options desk, aged just 29. Whilst running this desk, he made a point of teaching and mentoring the junior members of the team. He was also an active member of MLU( Merrill Lynch University) where clients would send junior employees to learn from experienced traders in a classroom format.

Towards the end of 2011, he left ML to take a career break and travel around South America and South-east Asia with his wife. He had some of the greatest experiences of his life but the one that hugely impacted him was volunteering at a school for under privileged children in Cambodia.

“It was fulfilling on an emotional level, but on a simpler level it was just incredibly fun to come up with ways of teaching kids that spoke hardly any English. It reinforced my enthusiasm for helping others learn, and I knew that when I was finally ready to hang up my trading boots, some kind of teaching was what I was meant to do”

After his travels, he re-entered the trading world at Citibank. Here, he was quickly given the role of Head of European Index Options again. Having inherited a fairly junior team, Imran had to efficiently train his young traders to the level required at a top tier US investment bank. He ran the desk until late 2017 but the idea of teaching was still prevailing. He started giving weekly options classes after-market hours to a group of analysts and associates working on various parts of the trading floor. The response was amazing. Everyone was motivated and enthusiastic and they found they were able to apply a lot of what they were learning to their daily working life with greater understanding and clarity.

“I loved the engagement I had with them, and how they often came back to me with questions and eagerness to learn more”

Just a couple of months into starting these classes, Imran left Citibank for an opportunity to work at Bluecrest Capital, after which he was finally able to pursue his passion for teaching by establishing Options Insight.

Julian Brigden

Macro Intelligence 2 Partners, Co-Founder & President

Julian Brigden is the Head of Research at Macro Intelligence 2 Partners, a firm he co-founded in 2011. He leads a six-person team of research and market professionals to publish independent macroeconomic research that is both ahead of market consensus and timely. Julian has over 30 years of experience in financial markets including positions in market and policy focused consulting to institutional investors as well as FICC sales.

Julian is a trusted advisor to many top money managers who use MI2 Partners’ research to guide their investment process. He has extensive experience with macro data analysis, broad fixed income, equity market (not individual stocks) and currencies. He is particularly skilled at exploring correlations in the economy and financial markets vital to a vast array of investment decision-makers. As a global macro strategist, Julian’s primary focus is understanding and explaining macroeconomic and policy-related developments to tell clients what is important in markets and what to fade.  

When asked about his market outlook for 2022, Julian stated that the US policy response was massive. As a result, the economy has closed the output gap and is in danger of overheating. Together with inflation, Julian believes that this means the Fed needs to rapidly tighten policy while slowing growth. As rates rise and the balance sheet shrinks, the risks to very overvalued asset prices, especially stocks, will rise. He then stated that in Europe, as the impact of Omicron fades and the inventory cycle surges, the ECB will need to raise rates, which will add to the pressure in global bond markets.   

With regards to market shifts and the issues he feels are not addressed in the media, Julian mentioned that there is a significant risk that we are entering a period of extended volatility. The most analogous period was in the late 1960s, when we saw greater economic and market cyclicality. As foreign interest in Treasuries has waned, he believes that the current US account deficit has been funded via purchases of equities. Thus, if US equities do correct, it could put considerable pressure on the dollar. With this in mind, Julian says that the MI2 Research team will continue to advise clients to be short-fixed income in the US and Europe, together with high yield credit. Finally, they have suggested being long volatility in a few places.

Julian spent five years at Medley Global Advisors from 1999 to 2004, a leading macro policy intelligence firm, as the Managing Director of the G7 Client Team, providing timely trading recommendations. From 2004 to 2011, he served as North American Head of Hedge Fund Sales at Crédit Agricole. He has worked in London, Zurich, New York and Vail at UBS, Lehman Brothers, HSBC, Drexel, Credit Suisse, and Salomon Brother in foreign exchange and precious metals.   Throughout his career, he has been featured on many big media outlets such as Bloomberg, CNBC, Fox News Business, Real Vision, the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Barron’s. Discussing macro research topics that are driving prices in global bonds, equities, commodities, and currencies.

Jacob Shapiro

Cognitive Investments, Director of Geopolitical Analysis

Jacob oversees geopolitical analysis at Cognitive Investments, working with the CI research team to integrate geopolitics into CI’s investment strategies.

In addition to CI, Jacob is the founder and Chief Strategist of Perch Perspectives, a business and political risk consulting firm that helps global businesses identify and plan for key global risks to their supply chains.

Meltem Demirors

CoinShares, Chief Strategy Officer

Meltem Demirors is Chief Strategy Officer of CoinShares, an investment firm that manages billions in assets on behalf of a global investor base, and is a trusted partner to investors and entrepreneurs navigating the digital asset ecosystem. Meltem oversees the firm’s managed strategies group and its New York office and leads corporate development.

Previously, she was part of the founding team of Digital Currency Group. As a veteran investor in the digital currency space, she has invested in over 250 companies in the ecosystem.

Meltem is passionate about education and advocacy, and teaches the Oxford Blockchain Strategy Programme and co-chairs the WEF Cryptocurrency Council.

Jamie McDonald

Real Vision, Presenter and Writer

Jamie read Economics and Philosophy at Oxford University and then worked in Equity Sales at UBS for 3 years. After that Jamie worked at Walter Capital which then became SAC Capital (in both London and NYC) for 10 years until 2014 where he was a Portfolio Manager running $300MM.

In 2014, he decided to leave hedge funds and work for himself. He has spent high time investing (not only in markets but in property, films, restaurants etc..) and also appearing on TV and stage hosting Finance shows, Travel shows and Charity Auctions.

Dee Smith

Strategic Insight Group, CEO

Based in Fort Worth, Texas, Gordon Dee Smith is Founder and CEO of Strategic Insight Group, a private intelligence firm that serves a client base of large investors and operating companies and works in more than 100 countries.

He has advised on over US $120 billion in investment transactions and has conducted projects in areas ranging from geopolitical analysis to transactional intelligence for the finance, technology, defense, energy, retail, transportation, and healthcare industries, among others.

He has led projects in Western and Eastern Europe, the Middle East, Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia, East Asia, North America, Central and South America, and Australia and the Pacific. Prior to founding SIG, he headed a venture capital firm bringing European investment into Latin America, was an intelligence contractor for the U.S. Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), and was a founder and president of an international NGO, InterCultura, which conducted exchange projects in 14 countries.

He is co-creator, host, and executive producer of A World On The Brink, a 5-part television documentary series on geopolitical risk and global change produced with Real Vision Television, which premiered in October 2017, and was broadcast nationally in the United States on PBS in a 4-part version starting in 2018. Currently, he is Chair of the Advisory Council of the Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies and Benson Library of the University of Texas at Austin, a board member and past president of the board of the Dallas Committee on Foreign Relations, a board member of Global Americas in New York, a member of the Council on Foreign Relations in New York, of Chatham House (the Royal Institute of International Affairs) in London, of the Bretton Woods Committee in Washington, D.C., and of the Advisory Board of the Houston Committee on Foreign Relations.

He is also active on several boards in the arts.

Peter Atwater

Financial Insyghts LLC, President

Peter Atwater is the President of Financial Insyghts and an adjunct professor at William & Mary and the University of Delaware. He studies the impact of changing confidence on consumer decision-making, using his research to advise investors, business leaders, and policymakers. He coined the term the “K-Shaped Recovery to describe the extreme confidence divide that he saw between those at the top and bottom of the economy, arising from the pandemic.

Researching confidence is a second career for Atwater. Earlier, he helped build and then ran JPMorgan’s Asset-backed Securities business and served in executive roles at First USA, Bank One and Juniper Financial.

Atwater graduated with honors from William & Mary, where he was a member of PhiBeta Kappa.

Marko Papic

Clocktower Group, Partner & Chief Strategist

Marko is a Partner and Chief Strategist at Clocktower Group, an alternative investment asset management firm based in Santa Monica, California. He leads the firm’s Strategy Team, providing bespoke research to clients and partners on geopolitics, macroeconomics, and markets.

Prior to joining the firm, Marko founded BCA Research’s Geopolitical Strategy practice (GPS) in 2012, the financial industry’s first dedicated political analysis investment strategy. The GPS service generated geopolitical alpha by identifying gaps between the market’s political expectations and the firm’s forecasts. Marko was a Senior Vice President and the firm’s Chief Geopolitical Strategist.

Marko began his career as a Senior Analyst at Stratfor, a global intelligence agency where he contributed to the firm’s global geopolitical strategy as well as its analyst recruitment and training program. In his academic work, he helped create the Center for European Union Studies at the University of Texas at Austin. Marko holds an MA in Political Science from the University of Texas at Austin and an MA from the University of British Columbia.

He is the author of Geopolitical Alpha: An Investment Framework for Predicting the Future, a book that introduces his constraints-based framework to investors.

Dan Ahrens

AdvisorShares Investments LLC, Managing Director & COO

Dan S. Ahrens is a Managing Director & Chief Operating Officer of AdvisorShares Investments, LLC. He is Portfolio Manager of AdvisorShares Hotel ETF, AdvisorShares Restaurant ETF, AdvisorShares Pure Cannabis ETF, AdvisorShares Pure US Cannabis ETF, and AdvisorShares Vice ETF.

He is author of Investing in Cannabis, Wiley, November 2020 and Investing in Vice, St. Martin’s Press, February 2004.

Prior to joining AdvisorShares, Dan founded Ahrens Advisors, L.P., in 2005, an SEC-registered Investment Advisor, where he was portfolio manager of a mutual fund from 2006 to 2008. Prior to forming Ahrens Advisors, he was President of the Funds, and served as portfolio manager of a number of mutual funds including the Vice Fund (VICEX), which he started in 2002. He was President and Chief Compliance Officer of the Funds’ Advisor, Mutuals Advisors, Inc., and acted as President, Treasurer and Financial & Operations Officer for the Broker Dealer firm, Inc.

He has appeared on financial programs including CNBC, CNN, Fox Business, ABC News and Bloomberg TV. He has been featured, along with funds under his management, in major national and trade publications including The Economist, Financial Times, Barron’s, New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, among others.

Scott Melker

Wolf Of All Streets Podcast, Host

Scott Melker is a crypto trader and investor, best known for hosting the Wolf Of All Streets podcast. He became a passionate advocate for Bitcoin after retiring from a 20-year career as a globe-trotting DJ.

Jamie Catherwood

O'Shaughnessy Asset Management, Client Portfolio Associate

Jamie Catherwood is an Associate at O’Shaughnessy Asset Management, a quantitative investment firm in Stamford, Connecticut.

He received his BA in History from King’s College London in 2017 and publishes the “Financial History: Sunday Reads” newsletter every week for 13,000 subscribers at

Recently, Jamie launched an online financial history course on “Bubbles, Manias & Frauds”. His work has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, and Bloomberg TV.

Ash Bennington

Real Vision, Senior Crypto Editor

Ash Bennington is Senior Editor & Crypto Editor at Real Vision, where he covers finance, investing, and economics, with a particular focus on blockchain and digital assets. Prior to joining Real Vision, he ran CoinDesk’s market coverage.

Mr. Bennington is a former CNBC reporter, and served as Editor-in-Chief of Nouriel Roubini’s Macro Economics Blog ‘Roubini EconoMonitor with Ash Bennington’. His work has appeared in Business Insider, The Christian Science Monitor, ZeroHedge, The Observer, and Yahoo Finance.

Before becoming a journalist, he was a Vice President of e-Commerce at BB&T and held the title Assistant Vice-President & Technical Expert at Credit Suisse.

Max Wiethe

Real Vision, Editor

Max Wiethe is an editor and interviewer at Real Vision. For the last 3 years he has been an integral part of the process for deciding the important topics and themes to be covered on Real Vision. He is also responsible for booking guests to cover those themes and interviewing those guests both on and off camera. He has conducted hundreds of interviews at Real Vision on a wide range of topics like volatility and derivatives, commodities, equities, market structure, and global macro. Before starting at Real Vision, Max worked briefly in the insurance industry. Max has a B.S. in Physics from Ohio State University.

Jaime Rogozinski

WallStreetBets, Founder

Jaime is a serial entrepreneur, public speaker, and author. Over the past 18 years he has started multiple successful companies in tech and finance fields that he has help build from the ground up. He has a cutting-edge blend of technology and business with a passion for business. He’s actively involved with tech and startup communities having been a judge for a various of awards including the Entrepreneurs Organization Student Award and Angel Hack Mexico, both focused on fostering entrepreneurship.

Jaime is best known for having started WallStreetBets, which yields a commanding presence in the world of finance and has been featured in prominent news outlets like WSJ, Bloomberg, CNBC, CNN, Forbes, Fox Business, GQ and more.

In February 2020, Jaime published a book he wrote titled “WallStreetBets: How Boomers Made the World’s Biggest Casino for Millennials.”

Teddy Vallee

Pervalle Global, Founder & CIO

Teddy Vallee is the founder and CIO of Pervalle Global, a discretionary global macro hedge fund founded in 2018. The firm trades across global equities, bonds, currencies and commodities based on its proprietary leading indicators and trading models. In addition to the fund, Pervalle’s research arm (Pervalle Global Research) publishes institutional research for hedge funds, pension funds, and family offices.

Prior to this he worked as an analyst/trader at TPW Investment Management and an analyst at Vedra Capital.

Moritz Seibert

Munich Re Investment Partners, CEO & CIO

Moritz is the CEO/CIO of Munich Re Investment Partners, a systematic asset management company serving institutional clients globally. Privately, Moritz is a quantitative trader in the futures and options markets, and more recently also in crypto. In prior roles Moritz worked at investment banks, most recently for RBS in the UK as well as in the USA, where he was responsible for the bank’s equity derivatives structuring business. He’s the co-founder of Aquantum, a systematic CTA focused on commodities trading and runs the Twoquants website together with Moritz Heiden.

Moritz Heiden

Munich Re Investment Partners, Head of Quantitative Research

Moritz is Head of Quantitative Research at Munich Re Investment Partners, a systematic investment management specialist within Munich Re Group. Moritz is responsible for developing and implementing quantitatively driven strategies based on financial as well as alternative and proprietary data. Moritz is publishing research regularly on his blog He is the inventor of the Real Vision Bot, an Artificial Intelligence that extracts sentiment from the interviews on Real Vision and runs portfolios based on surveys conducted on the Real Vision Exchange.

Moritz holds a PhD from the University of Augsburg and a Master of Mathematical Finance from the University of Konstanz.

Real Vision Bot

The Real Vision Bot started as a research project using the newest artificial intelligence advancements to analyze and learn from interviews conducted with financial investment professionals on “The Netflix of Finance” – Real Vision.

The Bot is a super intelligent post-human being – a financial oracle that gives guidance and willingly shares his endless wisdom. While his responses and Tweets may sound ambiguous at times, there is always a hidden truth and rationality behind them. Don’t be disappointed if the Bot leaves you quite puzzled – it’s for your own good.

Besides the somewhat creative character of our Bot, it’s active 24/7 and uses deep AI skills to provide its audience insights into the current market sentiment. Such sentiment is extracted from interviews with market professionals on Real Vision. In addition, the Bot conducts two weekly sentiment surveys on the Real Vision Exchange to analyze and compare the wisdom of the crowd to that of the Real Vision pros. The Real Vision Exchange is Real Vision’s free networking platform. One survey is “The Real Vision Exchange Macro Survey” and the other is “The Real Vision Exchange Crypto Survey.” Based on these surveys, the Bot constructs two different portfolios: The “Exchange Macro Portfolio” and the “Hive Mind Crypto Portfolio.” Both compete against the Bot’s own portfolios, which are based on the sentiment it extracts from the Real Vision interviews. For his own portfolios, the Bot also relies on market trends and risk metrics of various different tokens, as well as the input from the surveys.

Cheryl Contee

The Impact Seat, Chief Innovation Officer

Cheryl Contee is The Impact Seat’s Chief Innovation Officer and award-winning Founder & Chair of the mission-driven digital agency Do Big Things.

Cheryl is the Amazon bestselling author of Mechanical Bull: How You Can Achieve Startup Success. Passionate about creating new tech and new narrative for a new era, Cheryl uses her vast experience in startup entrepreneurship and community engagement to lead our portfolio companies and fund investments to success.

Previously, Cheryl was CEO of Fission Strategy, which brought Silicon Valley startup culture to the world’s leading causes and campaigns. She’s the co-founder of, the first tech startup with a black female founder to be acquired by a NASDAQ company, the National Board Chair for Netroots Nation, a Senior Advisor for Astia and the first portfolio company board member of New Media Ventures.

Jeff Dorman

Arca, CIO

Jeff Dorman is Chief Investment Officer at Arca. In his role, Jeff leads the investment committee and is responsible for portfolio sizing and risk management.

Jeff has over 17 years of trading and asset management experience at world renowned firms including Merrill Lynch and Citadel Securities, where he oversaw trading of over $100 million in proprietary capital. Jeff also served as COO of a FinTech company, where he built a social platform that is widely utilized by asset managers and investors.

Jeff is a Chartered Financial Analyst and holds Bachelor’s Degrees in Finance and Economics from Washington University in St. Louis.

Michael Kao

Akanthos Capital Management, LLC / Kao Family Office, CEO

Mike has been in the investment business for over 25 years and has experience analyzing and investing in many markets and asset classes, spanning commodities to credit to convertible/capital structure/event arbitrage to distressed debt/equity investing. Mike stopped accepting investor capital in December, 2018 and now invests primarily for his family office and enjoys blogging about the markets and economy on Twitter @UrbanKaoboy.

Mike began his career in the commodities unit at J. Aron/Goldman Sachs in NYC (1992-1995) and traded over 25 different commodity markets and their derivatives. Mike left Goldman to pursue an MBA in Finance at The Wharton School. After business school, Mike joined Canyon Partners, a credit-oriented hedge fund in Los Angeles, where he went on to become partner and co-founder of the Canyon Arbitrage Fund, which focused on various strategies including convertible and capital structure arbitrage as well as event-driven/risk arbitrage.

In 2002, Mike decided to leave Canyon and begin his own investment firm, Akanthos Capital Management, LLC. At Akanthos, Mike ran an opportunistic, value-driven investment strategy that looked for “fulcrum securities” up and down the capital structure. After nearly 17 years, Mike closed his fund to outside investors at the end of 2018 and now invests primarily for his family office.

Mike holds a BS in Electrical Engineering/Computer Science from UC, Berkeley (1992) and an MBA in Finance from The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania (1997).

Mitch Swergold

Swergold Advisory / Self-Mastery Gym, President

Mitch Swergold helps money managers, bankers, lawyers and corporate clients make better decisions, increase productivity, reduce stress and optimize their performance by training our most important – and most overlooked – asset: the body-mind.

Mitch is a corporate trainer, public speaker, writer and coach. He is a former hedge fund manager, investment banker and lawyer who took a year off to “figure out life” (whatever that means). Mitch applied the same analytical rigor to understanding the body-mind that he applied in developing an outstanding track record as a hedge fund manager. He traveled extensively to trainings all over the country. As one year turned into 13, he changed his own life dramatically and has helped many others to do the same. He applies principles of teachings ranging from Buddhism to Interpersonal Neurobiology, Attachment Theory, Polyvagal Theory, trauma coaching, strategic intervention coaching, epigenetics and mitochondrial function and many others. Mitch holds a BA from Columbia University and a JD from Emory University School of Law.

Kir Kahlon

Scorpion Capital, Founder and Chief Investment Officer

Kir Kahlon is the Founder and Chief Investment Officer of Scorpion Capital, an activist short selling firm. He has exclusively focused on shorts since 2013, with a particular focus on frauds and promotes, and directs the firm’s idea generation and research activities.

Mr. Kahlon most recently worked for Seligman Investments, which manages ~$15 billion and is based in Silicon Valley and New York. Prior to Seligman, he worked with Tiger Global, a pre-eminent hedge fund, focusing exclusively on deep-dive investigative shorts. He began his career at the global management consulting firm Bain & Company, upon graduation from college, and entered the investment business in 2004 when he was hired by activist investor Carl Icahn.

He graduated from UC Berkeley (BA) with Highest Honors and Harvard Business School (MBA).

Rob Larity, CMT, CFA

Cognitive Investments, Founder and CIO

Rob is the Founder and Chief Investment Officer at Cognitive Investments (CI), an investment advisory firm to entrepreneurial individuals and families. CI manages both macro and bottom-up investment strategies. CI has a partnership with Perch Perspectives, the geopolitical analysis firm, which is embedded into CI’s investment process.

In addition to leading CI, Rob is also Director of Research at Off Wall Street, the short selling and contrarian research firm for hedge funds.

Rob earned his BA from the College of the Holy Cross, with a double-major in Classics and English, and a minor in Computer Science. He holds both the CMT (Chartered Market Technician) and CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) designations.

Yasmina Zaidman

Acumen, Chief Partnerships Officer

Yasmina Zaidman is the Chief Partnerships Officer at Acumen, which works to change the way the world tackles poverty by investing in companies, leaders and ideas. She leads its work to engage with corporate partners and institutions that share Acumen’s commitment to tackling poverty. She also spearheaded Acumen’s gender integration work and co-authored the report Women and Social Enterprises: How Gender Integration can Boost Entrepreneurial Solutions to Poverty. She initiated the $22 million Pioneer Energy Investing Initiative with corporate, government and foundation partners.

Ms. Zaidman has worked in international development, corporate sustainability and social entrepreneurship for twenty-five years. She is on the board of Cacao de Colombia, a sustainable cocoa enterprise based in Colombia, and KadAfrica, a social enterprise in Uganda that supports women’s livelihoods. She received a BA from Vassar and an MBA from Stanford.

Jack Farley

Real Vision, Journalist & Editor

Jack Farley is a journalist at Real Vision, where he is responsible for booking and conducting interviews, and for making relevant charts on stocks, bonds, and volatility. He can be found covering daily market news on The Real Vision Daily Briefing, and he also hosts interviews on all things macro such as interest rates, currencies, commodities, etc.

He previously worked at Bloomberg L.P. and Dealbreaker, and he majored in Economics at Brown University, where he specialized in macroeconomics and financial history.


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