It is our pleasure to bring you an interview from 2016, featuring Reno Giancola, portfolio manager at Alignvest Management Corporation, based in Toronto.

Alignvest manages fundamental long-short funds focused on Canadian mid-cap equities outside of the resource sector.

MOI Global: Tell us about your background.

Reno Giancola: I started my career at Scotia Merchant Capital, the private equity arm of the Bank of Nova Scotia. The managing members of Scotia Merchant had a small public vehicle in which they invested their capital. That introduced me to public markets and I eventually moved over to public equities as an analyst and then a portfolio manager at Gluskin Sheff. I knew from a young age I wanted to be an investor, although I originally thought it would take the form of investments in private businesses. While the skillsets are similar, I grew to prefer public markets because there is always something to learn or do there.

I can’t pinpoint what sparked my interest in investing, but ever since I can remember I found learning about businesses and entrepreneurs fascinating. In high school I became a voracious reader of business biographies, especially those of Canadian entrepreneurs such as Jimmy Pattison, Paul Desmarais, and the group from Brascan (now Brookfield). I’m generally curious, and the best part of my job is getting to learn continuously.

MOI: What operating principles have guided Alignvest?

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