Tuesday 18 April 2017

Bangkok Trip April 2017

So wifey and I went on a Bangkok trip for 3 nights recently, taking advantage of the long weekend for some relaxation.

It was quite a last minute trip. We talked about it and made the bookings within a week.

Now Bangkok is not a new place to us since we have been there several times before. However what we didn't realised until much later, is that our trip coincides with the Songkran!

Needless to say, we were 'attacked' more than a few times by kids who look so happy and carefree with their guns and buckets, and by tourists who 'shot' at us while speeding past us on a tuk tuk.

However it was all in the spirit of fun.

I felt particularly happy to see those kids as they remain so cheerful and worry-free despite the environment they lived in. Kids in Singapore in general are very lucky indeed.

There are a few places that we will visit every time we go to Bangkok. These include Platinum Mall and Chatuchak for obvious reasons.

In addition for this round, we also went to some other places which we have never went before. E.g. Talad Rot Fai Ratchada.

It's an interesting place which sells... protein-laden bugs for example.

 And.. Guess what are these?

We also went to a smaller train market by the name Talad Neon. It's not as big as Ratchada but still worth a go as it's conveniently located near Platinum Mall.

We came across some dinner options that made us reconsider our options.. As far as I know Cellophane is not edible so we didn't ordered this.

I guess the oysters machine deliverer is busy so we didn't ordered the oysters either.

The crabs are busy as well? No wonder I always couldn't get through.

Not sure whether I want to swim under this waterfall..

We didn't attend this seminar but it must be interesting..

In the end we didn't eat much. But our damage is quite huge elsewhere.

Looking forward to the next soul searching trip. Cheers!

Wednesday 12 April 2017

ARA - Annyeong, Ezra - Annyeong.

This is a case of two different goodbyes...

I first took notice of ARA Asset Management when I came across an interview of John Lim where I was impressed by his vision for the company. Subsequently I did a fair bit of research on the company and decided to buy into ARA.

The price ran up subsequently and hit my TP within 3 months. It was a difficult decision whether to let go back then but I eventually decided to stick to my TP and let go despite the impressive run up.

It was a short 3 months relationship but thank you, ARA, for the wonderful time. You will be missed.

For Ezra, it's a gamble gone wrong. They were once a billion dollar market cap company in the O&G sector.

When I bought into the company at $0.165, I was betting that the oil crisis will resolve soon and that they can return to their heydays once the oil price recovers.

However things started to go downhill when their borrowings increased at a pace which they couldn't cope.

No doubt the protracted O&G crisis plays a part in their woes (and mine). But I feel mismanagement is the major contributory factor to their dismal end.

Even the Aramco project and the rising oil prices did not provide the catalyst for their recovery.

Being myself, I always try to find some positivities in a situation no matter how gloomy it is.

In this case the lesson derived is that a company's management is as important a factor as the macro environment and other financial data, if not more important.

This is a $8,000 lesson which I hope other investors can learn in a less painful way.

I would be glad if this post can serves as a reminder to experienced investors and as a lesson to newbies.

Lastly I wish to dedicate the following to Ezra. Bye.