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  • An Open Letter To Valeant's Michael Pearson [View article]
    The author, Blue ridge buffetologist has written an open letter with one very important underlying assumption:

    that Mike Pearson is innocent and didn't know what was going on in Philidor.

    The trouble is, I don't believe Mike Pearson is innocent and didn't know what was going on in Philidor. It isn't possible for him to have agreed to pay out $100m for an option to purchase Philidor at Zero later on, without Pearson's knowledge.

    The obvious question Pearson would have to ask is:

    "Why are we structuring the deal this way?"

    Some lawyer must have mumbled: "Oh, nothing, you know, it's just to limit Valeant's liabilities against Philidor."

    It's impossible for me to believe that Pearson said: "Oh, OK, we'll pay $100m, consolidate it's accounts with Valeant's and not worry about its possible liabilities which makes it imperative for us to set up this unusual structure ...."

    So, Warren Buffet could step up to the Senate committee and say what he said and James Burke could do be open and clear about the mistakes made by J&J because neither of them INTENTIONALLY sought to mislead or steer through a legal minefield to exploit loopholes in an unethical way. Buffet and Burke had nothing PERSONAL to hide.

    I truly do not believe Pearson can make the claim that he had NO PERSONAL KNOWLEDGE or INTENTION to do the things which Philidor did.
    Nov 7, 2015. 02:13 AM | 9 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Valeant Headed For Financial Trouble Or Merely Ignorant Of Its Contractual Obligations? [View article]
    Lengthy payment terms - 90 days, are common. But the payee has priced in the lengthy payment period.

    It's another thing altogether when the payer agrees to a 30 or 60 day payment payment and then deliberately draws out the payment to 90 or 120 days for his own cash management practice.

    When you say its a smart business practise when it's legal to do so, let's be clear about what we mean by legal.

    Question: Does legal mean not criminal?

    Answer: If you had agreed to 30 or 60 days payment period knowing full well that you intend to pay at 90 or 120 days later - it is at the worse case - criminal. I'd call it fraud. It may not be easy to prove such an intention and thus prove the crime, but it's still fraud.

    From a commercial law perspective it is a breach of contract terms and in that sense it is "illegal".

    Nov 6, 2015. 06:26 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Is Valeant An Ethical Company? [View article]
    I'm a lawyer and I'll say that Valeant owns Philidor and the courts will have a difficult time finding otherwise. Here are the following facts:

    (1) it has paid $100m for the option to own Philidor and can exercise the option at $0 dollars. Effectively, it can own it at any time.

    (2) VRX consolidates the accounts of Philidor in its books. You consolidate a subsidiary, especially a wholly owned subsidiary.

    (3) From what has been disclosed, VRX had control over Philidor. Control is one of the tests of ownership.

    The "option" to acquire Philidor is a legal fiction. The law can be an ass, judges and lawyers may be stupid but I really don't think they are that stupid.
    Nov 4, 2015. 07:18 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Valeant - Is That The 'Smoking Gun'? [View article]
    That's what I'm thinking. I was researching VRX and I read some comments from posters way back in 2014 - during the take over fight for Allegan. One of the posters was an ex Valeant employee and another a current employee. Both emphasised that Pearson cut expenses in the companies acquired to the point where sales force, marketing and other support also disappeared. So the question is: how did Valeant make its sales numbers? Perhaps through the use of these specialist pharmacies.
    Nov 2, 2015. 09:16 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Biogen Is Not Valeant [View article]
    I'd like to buy a put on Valiant. That's one company I'd like to see fail.
    Oct 16, 2015. 10:14 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Biogen Is Not Valeant [View article]
    Wow!! 20K.

    Here in Australia we have a combination of socialise healthcare (we pay 2% of our taxable income specifically for healthcare) and private health insurance.

    So, we don't pay approximately 20K for a 12 hour stay in hospital.

    I'm all for socialise healthcare. I happily pay my 2% and have peace of mind that everyone - and I mean everyone, can get the treatment they need.
    Oct 16, 2015. 10:12 AM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Why Apple 'Gets Away With It' In China [View article]
    I was told in Javanese culture, a true leader should be seen to be doing very little and yet things happens as if the leader did it. This shows just how powerful the leader truly is: no need to look like he is powerful or working or shouting or demonstrating, but still everything gets done according to his wishes.

    Because if a leader needs to be up there shouting and demonstrating and dramatising, what power does he really have?

    While this contrast makes me smile, I'm reminded that there are 2 types of leadership. Those who lead with huge amounts of charisma and those who lead more quietly. Neither life nor leadership is ever so simple that we can just cut everything into a binary format. There is a place and time for each type of leadership. But I do think Tim Cook is the latter type of leader, quiet but effective.
    May 13, 2015. 09:58 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Cowen survey: Android-to-iPhone defections growing [View news story]
    Errrr - what are widgets?

    Seriously, :-D
    Mar 25, 2015. 02:23 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple sets Watch prices; pre-orders start on April 10 [View news story]
    No you are not the only one who will find this watch useful. I do too.

    As a woman who has to pull her iPhone out of her handbag a dozen times a day (I often wear skirts and dresses without handy pockets and a holster just don't look good with that skirt - Duh!!!) I can see precisely the use that you described.

    However, being conservative, I'll probably wait till at least the end of this year before buying an apple watch. I want to read more about the pros and cons of the apple watch, and what it can do in terms of monitoring vital signs such as blood pressure etc. before I get one.
    Mar 10, 2015. 05:00 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Fossil Group: Desperate For An Answer To Apple Watch [View article]
    I wrote elsewhere that in my opinion that Women (of the non Fan girl variety) would be interested in the Apple Watch - for utilitarian purposes. Women usually carry their phones in their handbags where we don't always hear it ring or feel it vibrating, where if we want to tell the time, we have to unzip the handbag and pull it, check the time, put it back and rezip the bag. Repeat and rinse for every phone call we answer, every sms we want to send. Or we have to leave it on our desk where we can see it buzz ..... I'm telling you, it's inconvenient.

    If Apple produces a watch which buzzes on my wrist, shows my messages, allows me to send a quick message (e.g. "Cant talk now" "OMW" Call you back later") response, allows me to monitor the number of steps I take a day (fitbit anyone?), even may be, take a phone call, syncs with my music, my iPad and my macbook, and basically makes it easier for me to do several things on my apple watch rather then my iPhone, then yep, I'll consider buying the apple watch for utilitarian purposes. I probably won't get for at least 18 months though. I'd want to wait to see the different applications and improvements first.
    Feb 25, 2015. 02:04 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple Numbers Get Serious [View article]
    My comment is slightly off topic: APPLE WATCH SALES

    Quite a few apple analysts have given the view that they had reservations about how well the apple watch will sell. One of the concerns being that the sales of apple watches will not replace the fall in sales in iPad and iPad mini, will not be a big driver of revenue for Apple.

    I wonder if most of these analysts are men, I wonder if women might have quite a different perspective to the apple watch.

    Most men I know pop their mobile phone in one of their pockets and pull it out when it buzzes or rings or when they want to check the time. Most men wear clothing with pockets all the time.

    Most women don't wear clothing with pockets all the time. So, just about every woman I know put their mobile phone in their handbags/computer bags - and have to remember to take it out of their bags. This causes a few problems. For a start, if a woman wants to check the time, a woman needs to open her handbag, pull out the phone and check it, put it back. Then there's the hassle of remembering to turn your phone back from vibrate to ring before you put it back into the handbag so you can hear the phone calls, coz you can't feel the vibrations of the phone in the handbag, unlike if the phone were in your pocket. If I'm at home and I'm not wearing something with pockets, I have to leave the phone out in a place where I can hear the phone ring. If I'm in the kitchen, I might not hear it ringing if I leave it in the living room.

    And then there's the reality in most countries where mothers still have most of the responsibility about managing the home and children even if they work outside it

    Zipping, unzipping, rezipping (or you can substitute buckling), having to remember to switch a phone from vibrate to ring, etc etc are are small, but cumulative hassles for a typical woman which most would rather not deal with if they can avoid it. hence the apple phone. I think a lot of women and mothers in particular would find these functions attractive enough to make them consider buying an apple watch that's strapped to our wrists:

    (1) read the time;

    (2) it vibrates telling us that a message, phone call has arrived or an appointment is due regardless of whether our phones are in our handbags, living room or garden or garage;

    (3) read the message, appointment, note, even answer the call with a quick sms to say "I'm in a meeting. Call you later."

    (4) is an additional piece of security for Apple pay. You need 2 pieces of hardware to sync along with our thumbprints before you can use apple pay.

    (5) has apps which will allow us to replace the fitbit that we are already wearing on our wrists right now.

    (6) has the apps which allows me to measure my blood pressure when I'm yelling at the kids :-) (and other health focussed apps).

    (7) the apple watch syncs seamlessly with the iPhone, the iPad, the Macbook, the family's macbook, iPad and iPhone and the whole eco system.

    All that stuff about specs, and whether the Samsung phone is better than the other. Once a family is on an Apple platform, most mothers I've talked to don't give a damn about individual specs.. Mothers, just want everything to work so that they can manage the children and the household and their work as easily and seamlessly as possible because most mothers juggle and when all the electronic devices talk together, that's just one thing a mother does NOT have to juggle.

    (8) Then of course, the big one. When Internet of Things takes off in our homes, we don't want to have to carry our iPhones all the time. Remember, we are women and we don't always wear clothing with pockets. But a wristwatch can be always on and we can control IoT stuff with the watch.

    So, my hypothesis is that:

    (a) women will be big buyers of the apple watch because we don't want to adopt fashion which requires us to wear clothing with pockets all the time.

    (b) sales of apple watch will take time to ramp up because there aren't nearly as many early adopting fangirls as there are early adopting fanboys of technology. But women may end up adopting the apple watch in large numbers - perhaps more then men.

    Perhaps that's one reason why Angela Ahrendts was hired. She knows women, knows fashion, knows what it will take to appeal to women. So, unlike the google glasses, I think in the medium term, the apple watch has a bright future. Whether that's enough to move the needle on revenues in Apple significantly - is the 64 billion dollar question.
    Feb 12, 2015. 09:52 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • IDC 2014 Smartphone Data: Apple Catches Up On Samsung; The Chinese Aren't Too Far Behind [View article]
    I too, agree with Ben Frost's statement. My husband owns an iPhone 4 and has been using it every day for 4+ years. It's still working well thanks to regular software upgrades. Given how hard that iPhone 4 works, given how the hardware specs are rather out of date,given how the iPhone 4's memory is FULL after 4 years, it's remarkable how well it really works. It's probably about 1 to 2 seconds slower than then my iPhone 5. When hubby upgrades to an iPhone 6 in a few weeks time, we'll pass the iPhone 4 to our teenager.

    I don't see myself upgrading from my iPhone 5 for another 2 years or until ApplePay happens in my country, which ever is earlier.

    So an upgrade once every 3 to 4 years - but it's unlikely we'll migrate to an Android ....
    Feb 3, 2015. 07:24 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Apple: In The Smartphone Race, Samsung Has Already Lost [View article]
    On watch makers, I think that Apple will work with some of the watch makers like Swatch.
    Jan 29, 2015. 09:53 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Secret To Apple's Huge Quarter [View article]
    Hmmm, if you think there has been channel stuffing in the last quarter, then are you saying that Apple Management is lying about how supply of it's iPhones have just caught up with demand in January 2015?

    I don't think Apple Management need to lie to boost the numbers up in the last quarter ending 31 December 2014. If anything, Apple management would be better off to hold back on some numbers so that they can smoothen the revenue ups and downs in this quarter 31 March 2015. Don't you think?
    Jan 29, 2015. 09:46 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • The Secret To Apple's Huge Quarter [View article]
    Yes, that's true, there are hundreds of knockoff Rolex's, Hermes handbags etc in China, for wannabes and try hards. But those who have achieve the required level of affluence and care about "face" and brands, don't want to be seen with knockoffs. Because if they are discovered to be using knockoffs, it affects their "face".

    The other truth about iPhone is just the ecosystem. Unless Xiaomi can compete at that level, younger, educated Chinese will want access to Apple's ecosystem and ease of use.
    Jan 29, 2015. 09:38 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment