Mike Taylor

How a NZ fund manager turned a $3000 student loan into $1b under management

Business is Boring is a weekly podcast series presented by The Spinoff in association with Callaghan Innovation. Host Simon Pound speaks with innovators and commentators focused on the future of New Zealand. This week he talks to Mike Taylor, founder of Pie Funds.

On this week’s Business is Boring, Simon Pound talks to a founder and chief investment officer who has taken a company from a small loan to having a billion under management in just over a decade.

If you were a university student around the year 2000 you probably remember the glory days of the student living costs loans, when you could drawdown the entire thing in one go. The loan was ostensibly to help support you while you studied, but we all knew stories of people who turned it into trips, parties or other fun stuff, usually incurring massive future liabilities. Business is Boring host Simon Pound went to a study trip in Russia using his – and resented the resulting debt for the next 20 years. But how many people do you know who were smart enough to use that opportunity as the seed capital to kickstart an investment career? This week’s podcast guest was one of the few. Thanks to that seed money he now runs a company with $1b under management, which has so far returned $350m to its clients.

Mike Taylor, founder of Pie Funds, turned his $3000 and some other funds into $200k, attracting investment enough to go out on his own. Then the financial crisis hit. He battled through, bought while the buying was good, and was able to build his way to some of the best returns in the business.

Today Taylor is involved in funds management, wealth advisory services, and Juno KiwiSaver, which offers a low-fee model that he’s challenging the rest of the Kiwisaver industry to match.

Hear his Taylor’s full, remarkable story on this week’s Business is Boring.

Either download this episode (right click and save)have a listen below or via Spotify, subscribe through iTunes (RSS feed).



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