2016 Forty Under Forty

Back to Forty Under Forty
Arthur GuimaraesAssociate CIO, COO,University of California Board of Regents
(Oakland, CA) 39
Arthur Guimaraes
(Art by Lauren Tamaki)

“We depend on good data to make investment decisions. Arthur as COO is key to making this happen on a daily basis.”

Name the most noticeable generational divide in investment style between sub-40-year-old investors and baby boomers.

Disruptive innovation changes the world, and it’s come about under the younger generation. Ten years ago, Uber, Airbnb, WhatsApp—these things didn’t exist. We’re so fortunate to have people like Jagdeep [Bachher, UC’s CIO] and Scott [Chan, UC’s head of public equities] who push the thinking on investing.

Your least favorite part of being an asset owner is...?

Managers and service providers who always make you feel like you’re the smartest and funniest person in the room.

The manager you don’t currently work with whose brain you’d most like to pick for an hour is...?

Warren Buffett.

... and where would that meeting take place?

Laguna Beach. It’s serene; it’s beautiful; it’s just peaceful. It’s the perfect place to sit on the sand and have a conversation with Warren Buffett (in my dreams).

Describe the weirdest interaction you’ve had with an asset manager.

It’s these fancy, long, and drawn-out dinners, where you quickly figure out there’s no alignment of interest. It’s like, “Check please!” We’ve given upon those.

What asset class or investment troubles you most right now—and why?

Energy: It feels like the pain is just beginning. People will continue to pump oil at $25 because they don’t know if it’ll be as valuable in the future. Couple that with clean energy—the world is going to change. I have to thank Amy Jaffe—UC’s energy advisor—for this one.

Name your favorite food and drink.

Pizza and Waterloo Dark ale.

What’s the wildest institutional portfolio you’ve seen?

Ours. We can talk further over a Waterloo Dark.

Name a cultural aspect of asset management that gets under your skin.

The 2-and-20 model. My view: That model is dead. We haven’t paid anyone 2-and-20 since we got here.

Donald Trump is ________.

Forreal. Coming from Canada, our ­politics are kind of boring. And this feels like reality TV.

Name your four-member investment dream team for your own family office.

The CIO is Warren Buffett. His deputies are George Soros, Ratan Tata, and Jagdeep. Sorry, Jagdeep—but he’s not Buffett yet. As for Mr. Tata, we were in India recently and spent time with him. He’s like royalty there, but still the most down-to-earth guy. It was like traveling with the Pope: People would stop him on the street just to say thank you and take pictures.

What’s the biggest investment or career misstep you’ve made?

The devil is always in the detail, as I’ve discovered a couple of times when we’re flying so fast. Not focusing on the details will truly get you in trouble.

What should be an investment trend, but isn’t (yet)?

Making defined contribution plans look, act, and perform more like defined benefit plans.