Amit Wadhwaney of Moerus Capital Management presented his investment thesis on Cromwell Property Group (Australia: CMW) at Best Ideas 2024.

Thesis summary:

Cromwell is an Australian property company that owns high-quality office properties in Australia, has investments in real estate-related funds it controls, and manages a range of real estate assets, primarily in Europe. It also provides property asset and fund management for internal and external investors.

A lack of business and geographic focus, combined with an inflated cost structure, has led to a number of years of relatively indifferent financial and stock price performance, resulting in an undervalued stock.

Following multiple attempts, control of the company moved to ARA Asset Management (a large global real estate asset manager), which has since been bought by a larger real estate asset manager. The newly installed board and management are expected to narrow the focus of the business while crystallizing some of the latent value embedded in the shares, likely benefiting shareholders.

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About the instructor:

Amit Wadhwaney is a Portfolio Manager and Co-Founding Partner at Moerus Capital Management LLC, and the founding manager of the Moerus Worldwide Value Fund. Mr. Wadhwaney has over 30 years of experience researching and analyzing investment opportunities in developed, emerging, and frontier markets worldwide, and has managed global investment portfolios since 1996. Prior to founding Moerus, Mr. Wadhwaney was a Portfolio Manager and Partner at Third Avenue Management LLC. Mr. Wadhwaney founded the international business at Third Avenue and was the founding manager of the Third Avenue Global Value Fund, LP, the Third Avenue Emerging Markets Fund, LP, and the Third Avenue International Value Fund. Earlier in his career, Mr. Wadhwaney was first a securities analyst, and then Director of Research at M.J. Whitman LLC, a New York-based broker-dealer. Prior to joining M.J. Whitman, Mr. Wadhwaney was a paper and forest products analyst at Bunting Warburg, a Canadian brokerage firm. He began his career at Domtar, a Canadian forest products company. Mr. Wadhwaney holds an M.B.A. in Finance from The University of Chicago. He also holds a B.A. with honors and an M.A. in Economics from Concordia University; at Concordia, he was awarded the Sun Life Prize and the Concordia University Fellow in Economics, and he subsequently taught economics classes there. He also holds B.S. degrees in Chemical Engineering and Mathematics from the University of Minnesota.