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Valuing Amazon’s & Walmart’s value chains. Podcast (Link) Article (Link)
As Amazon looked to enter the digital grocery business, they had a problem. Amazon quickly learned their existing distribution network was not well-suited to offer grocery products due the grocery markets finite selection of goods and perishability as grocery products degrade with time and transport. To help solve this problem Amazon acquired, Whole Foods in 2017 as they were already integrated into local markets and had the experience and ability to manage perishable goods that needed to be stocked and sold quickly, ensuring freshness and quality. Amazon's digital grocery channel could now be layered on Whole Foods existing network and stores. Walmart's value chain was already well integrated in local markets giving them a massive head start as both giants moved into the digital grocery business.
Howard Marks discusses how to think differently from the pack. Podcast (Link)
It is really easy to be average in investing. If you think the same a everyone else you will take the same actions as everyone else. If you take the same actions as everyone else you should have the same outcome. So you can't think the same as everyone else if you want a different outcome. You have to diverge. To be an above average investor you have to accomplish two things. First, think different from everyone and therefore take different actions. Second, you have to be right when you think different. Second level thinking is thinking which is different and better. Very few people can do it.