“The Industrial Pioneer of India … an unprecedented opportunity for growth.”

Sniffing out a teaser for Benjamin Shepherd's Global Investment Strategist

By Travis Johnson, Stock Gumshoe, March 25, 2013

Global Investment Strategist is the newsletter that was called Silk Road Investor back when it was launched with Yiannis Mostrous at the helm six or seven years ago — it was given the less evocative new name once the market crash and the huge wave of Chinese frauds made investors worry about the new “silk road” … and now, with the departure of Yiannis Mostrous, it has a new “chief strategist” at the helm in Benjamin Shepherd, who previously ran the ETF-focused offering at Investing Daily.

But it appears that they’ve kept the storytellers on the copywriting staff at Investing Daily, and the new Global Investment Strategist ads tread the same path as the old ones — promising riches from emerging markets.

We haven’t covered one of their ideas in quite some time but under Mostrous they did tease a few interesting ones, ranging from Jollibee in the Philippines to Keppel Corp in Singapore, with only their Russian teased picks being real disasters, so let’s take a look and see what tale Shepherd has to tell us (for $497 a year).

Here’s the intro that pretty much sets the stage for us today:

“From the forests of India comes a new economy car that the world’s billions can afford… And now this innovative company in India has just acquired two of the world’s most sought-after brands in luxury cars…

“Economy Meets Luxury: The Two New Cars That Will Drive the World

“The facts don’t lie: There are 7 billion people in this world, and 3 billion of them live in areas that are developing rapidly. That’s 3 billion people who anxiously want to buy their very first car, but most of the world’s vehicles are way, way out of reach. Until now.

“This car company in India has put rigorous cost controls on every single detail of their new economy car—from the thrifty single side mirror to the sparing (but effective) three lug nuts per wheel—and have created a ~$2,995 car that’s now in reach for this giant, upwardly-mobile segment of the world.

“Simultaneously, this company has used their boardroom prowess to purchase two premium brands of luxury cars that are well-established and well-respected in the U.S., Canada and Europe.

“Early sales figures for both the economy and luxury ventures give promise to an unprecedented opportunity for growth.”

He likens this story to the early days at Ford, when they reinvented manufacturing and transportation by cutting costs, streamlining, and appealing to the masses with a low price …

“My stock pick even has their own version of Henry Ford himself: an unstoppable innovator who inspired his nation, reinvented manufacturing standards and reinvigorated the national workforce.”

And of course, he also tells us about his incredible stock-picking acumen, claiming that “his” GIS portfolio is up 118% over the last five years. Maybe he was involved in the newsletter during those years of gains, but as far as I can tell he wasn’t on the masthead until just a few months ago.

Some of you will already know the name of this car they’re teasing, and of the company that’s selling it — it was very big news several years ago — but don’t go spoiling the surprise for everyone else just yet, we’ve got a few more clues to parse:

“Selling to the world’s billions wasn’t a last-minute idea. My stock pick began development on the Economical Wonder in 2003, and didn’t release the first production model until 2008.

“But it’s only been in the last few months that the true production goals of this car have been realized. A hundred years have been building up to this moment.”

And a few more details for you …

“The release of the Economical Wonder hasn’t been without a few bumps in the road. This company recently made a wide-scale voluntary replacement of a finicky starter on 140,000 of these cars. That number may sound large, but you have to remember that this is a car designed for a volume of millions and millions.

“In reality, the cost of the recall was only $20 million, and while it’s a tough blow to a tight-margin vehicle, it unequivocally proved to the world that this company isn’t like the rest, and that they stand behind their product.

“But there’s a point here that’s even more important: My stock pick is honing their product and learning lessons along the way, just as Ford did in the teens of the 20th century. My stock pick will emerge as the only company in the world who will know how to make the dream of the world’s cheapest car into an everyday reality.

“That’s a competitive advantage so extreme that it will reshape the world’s concept of ‘economy market.’ …

“… the Economical Wonder has finally achieved its first major production milestone: one million units a year.”

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We learn that they’re now securing capacity to increase that production by 150%, that they will expand outside of India …. but also that there’s another side to this company, they’re not just the maker of the next breakthrough tiny, cheap car, they’re also luxury automakers:

“The fact that my stock pick has now entered the luxury market is a testament to their multi-faceted long-term strategy.

“This puts my stock pick in America, in England, in Europe and in the rest of the world’s developed countries with two well-known brands.

“Brand #1 is known for their premium li