Star Traders

Julian Robertson: The tiger analyst


Julian H. Robertson was born on June 25, 1932, in North Carolina for a textile company executive. He graduated from Episcopal High School in 1951 and in 1955; he was graduated from the University of North Carolina with a degree in business administration.

In 1957, he joined he joined Kidder, Peabody & Co. in New York where he became the head money management after leaving the Navy. After that, he headed up the firm’s asset management division before deciding to move with his family to New Zealand for a year to write a novel.

In 1980, Robertson founded Tiger Management with initial investments from friends and family. His company became one of the world’s first great hedge funds. From 1980 to 1996, he turned $8 million into $7.2 billion and his firm reached $22 billion in assets at its peak. Between 1998 and 2000, a combination of poor stock picking and failure to exploit the technology stock craze caused Robertson’s funds to suffer steep to close with a value of $6 billion.

His 2003 estimated net worth was over $400 million, and in March 2011, Forbes estimated it at $2.3 billion.

Robertson is still widely followed in the media and his comments attract a lot of attention, as he didn’t retire completely. He kept his hand in the hedge fund business by supporting and financing upcoming hedge fund managers.

Many of the analysts and managers Robertson employed and mentored at Tiger Management, including Chris Shumway, Lee Ainslie and Ole Andreas Halvorsen went out on their own. They are now running some of the best-known hedge fund firms, called “Tiger Cubs”.

Robertson is an active philanthropist and serves on a number of organization and university boards. He also is active as an investor and developer in New Zealand, where he spends some of his time.

“Julian Robertson: A Tiger in the Land Of Bulls And Bears” is one of the best publications that was written about him. It was written by Daniel A. Strackman in 2004.

His best quotes:

  • “Our mandate is to find the 200 best companies in the world and invest in them, and find the 200 worst companies in the world and go short on them. If the 200 best don’t do better than the 200 worst, you should probably be in another business.”
  • “Hear a [stock] story, analyze and buy aggressively if it feels right.”

Share Article