Calgary, of course, has more than oil and tar sands. The Calgary Herald recently carried an interesting article on investment clubs. (New breed of Investment club goes big, 7/4/10) Traditionally, investment clubs have up to about 12 people who meet over lunch or dinner for as much a social function as for investing. As those clubs have declined, we now see a new type rising.
Podium, a new club in Calgary, is seeking more than 5,000 members at an investment limit of $5,000 each. Vancouver’s Freedom Investment Club had 5,000 members and was valued at $110 million. Podium plans to reduce risk by focusing exclusively on local companies, or “Calgary businesses with global potential.”
Podium is currently evaluating three local companies for investment potential. What if Better Investing teamed up with Motley Fool, ShareOwners.org and/or ProxyDemocracy.org to create a new breed of investments all around the US where investments are focused locally for the long-term and the clubs spend at least as much time on corporate governance and strategy as they do on stock picking?
Such investment clubs could be seen as potential advisory boards and test markets for local companies. Community involvement would create a greater bond between companies and society. We could start getting away from the notion that holding Intel 14 times in 5 years is long-term investing. I’d be happy to help.