Friday File: “Pre-IPOs” and some Real Money Portfolio updates

By Travis Johnson, Stock Gumshoe, September 11, 2020

My spirits have been lifted a bit in the last week… not so much by the general state of the world (unemployment is horrifying, the pandemic remains scary, politics has sunk even further into the gutter, a big chunk of the world is literally on fire, again), but by the return of some seasonal patterns that I really missed in the fog of quarantine. After six months of every day feeling almost exactly the same, it has been uplifting to see the return of the Tour de France, with each day bringing a little iterative and semi-predictable change as the race progresses through its three weeks… and the return of 2/3 of the Little Gumshoes to school, and the launch of the NFL last night, means a turning of the season, and brings a little structure to the week. That gives me some strength and hope.

And the launch of the NFL surely gives some strength to the sports and media companies who were otherwise running low on content — though it wasn’t a surprise, and the media stocks haven’t really reacted meaningfully (they would have, had a bad surprise come). The first game of the season was fun but nothing special, and ratings were down a bit from last year, but it felt real and almost normal, even with only 20% of the seats in the stadium filled.

The return of football means gambling season is upon us once again, and that should lift the spirits of the bookmakers… so in that spirit, I did throw a little more capital into my small Kambi (KAMBI.ST, KMBIF) position today (that’s the Swedish sports book company that runs sports betting for many US casinos). I was hoping (as an investor, not as a human being) that we’d have a little panic about a delay to the season, and that might bring the shares down to a more appealing buy price (we’re at about 30X 2021 earnings estimates right now), and maybe that will still come — but for now, my Kambi position is a little larger. I would have added to GAN (GAN) as well, since that company remains well-positioned and well-priced as the stock quiets down and gives up some of its day-trader fan base, but my position in that one is already as large as I’m comfortable with, so it will have to just sit there for ...

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