165 episodes

Learn how companies work from the people who know them best. We do deep research and interview industry veterans, investment professionals, and corporate executives to explain the inner workings of public stocks and private businesses. For each company, we break down their history, business model, financial statements, secret sauce, and bull/bear case. We believe every business has lessons to teach us and Breakdowns is here to highlight them. Learn more and stay up to date at www.joincolossus.com.

Business Breakdowns Colossus

    • Business

Learn how companies work from the people who know them best. We do deep research and interview industry veterans, investment professionals, and corporate executives to explain the inner workings of public stocks and private businesses. For each company, we break down their history, business model, financial statements, secret sauce, and bull/bear case. We believe every business has lessons to teach us and Breakdowns is here to highlight them. Learn more and stay up to date at www.joincolossus.com.

    Winmark: Resale at Scale

    Winmark: Resale at Scale

    This is Matt Reustle. Today, we break down Winmark, a major player in the reseller economy. You're likely familiar with some of Winmark’s brands, like Plato's Closet or Play It Again Sports. Altogether, Winmark operates five brands through a franchising model. 
    Our guest to break down Winmark is the current CEO, Brett Heffes. During our conversation, we discuss the broader reseller economy, the dynamics of managing those brands and different franchise brands, and how Winmark thinks about growth. In the back half of the conversation, I also made sure to talk to Brett about his thoughts on capital allocation, focusing the business, and yes, on investor communication. Please enjoy this breakdown of Winmark.

    Interested in hiring from the Colossus Community? Click here.
    For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.
    -----
    This episode is brought to you by Public. A High-Yield Cash Account is a secondary brokerage account with Public Investing, member FINRA/SIPC. Funds from this account are automatically deposited into partner banks where they earn a variable interest and are eligible for FDIC insurance. Neither Public Investing nor any of its affiliates is a bank. US only. Learn more at public.com/disclosures/high-yield-account.
    This episode is brought to you by Tegus, the only investment research platform built for the investor. With traditional research vendors, the diligence process is slow, fragmented, and expensive. That leaves investors competing on how well they can aggregate data — not on their unique ability to analyze insights and make great investment decisions. Tegus offers an end-to-end platform with all the data you need to get up to speed on a company or market: up-to-the-minute financials, customizable models, management and culture checks, and, of course, our vast and growing library of expert call transcripts. Tegus is changing the world of expert research. Learn more and get your free trial at tegus.com/patrick.
    -----
    Business Breakdowns is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Business Breakdowns, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.
    Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.
    Follow us on Twitter: @JoinColossus | @patrick_oshag | @zbfuss | @ReustleMatt | @domcooke
    Editing and post-production work for this episode was provided by The Podcast Consultant (https://thepodcastconsultant.com).

    Show Notes
    (00:00:00) Welcome to Business Breakdowns
    (00:04:25) Exploring the Resale Market with Windmark's CEO
    (00:06:34) The Mechanics of Winmark's Franchise Model
    (00:07:10) Winmark's Unique Position In The Resale Economy
    (00:12:21) Franchisee Support and Business Model Insights
    (00:20:44) Growth Strategies and Franchisee Expansion Philosophy
    (00:24:12) A Look At The Franchisee Agreement
    (00:26:57) Traits of Successful Franchisees and Common Mistakes
    (00:28:42) Effective Marketing Strategies for Franchisees
    (00:30:45) The Importance of Viewing Stores as Legacy Assets
    (00:32:33) Renewal Rates and Franchisee Health as Key Metrics
    (00:35:27) Shifting Focus From Leasing Business to Core Resale Operations
    (00:41:19) Capital Allocation and Shareholder Value
    (00:45:51) A Unique Approach to Investor Relations
    (00:47:31) Lessons Learned From Breaking Down Winmark
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    • 50 min
    Embraer: Defying Gravity

    Embraer: Defying Gravity

    This is Matt Reustle. We are back in the world of aviation today, breaking down Embraer. Embraer has carved out an interesting niche, manufacturing regional jets, business jets, and military aircrafts.
    Our guest is Richard Aboulafia, Managing Director at AeroDynamic Advisory and long-time aviation analyst and consultant. We break down how this aviation success story grew out of Brazil, the evolution of the regional jet market, the business jet market, & tap into military aircrafts, and, of course, we cover the opportunity presented by Boeing today. Please enjoy this breakdown of Embraer.

    Interested in hiring from the Colossus Community? Click here.
    For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.
    -----
    This episode is brought to you by Public. A High-Yield Cash Account is a secondary brokerage account with Public Investing, member FINRA/SIPC. Funds from this account are automatically deposited into partner banks where they earn a variable interest and are eligible for FDIC insurance. Neither Public Investing nor any of its affiliates is a bank. US only. Learn more at public.com/disclosures/high-yield-account.

    This episode is brought to you by Tegus, the go-to destination for bold investing. The investment research platform trusted by 95% of the top 20 global private equity firms just got even better. Building on their solid reputation for expert insights, Tegus has expanded to become the first true all-in-one research platform. The new Tegus makes diligence faster, easier, and more convenient than ever before. Your Tegus license gives you access to over 70,000 expert transcripts, more than 4,000 fully drivable financial models, and exclusive datasets like company management checks, industry KPIs, hard-to-find non-GAAP data, and more. Tegus is the fastest way to learn about a public or private company and the most cost-effective way to conduct investment research — now all under one roof. Learn more and get your free trial at tegus.com/patrick.
    -----
    Business Breakdowns is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Business Breakdowns, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.
    Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.
    Follow us on Twitter: @JoinColossus | @patrick_oshag | @zbfuss | @ReustleMatt | @domcooke
    Editing and post-production work for this episode was provided by The Podcast Consultant (https://thepodcastconsultant.com).

    Show Notes
    (00:00:00) Welcome to Business Breakdowns
    (00:04:49) Embraer's Strategic Positioning in the Aerospace Market
    (00:05:54) The Fascinating Origin Story of Embraer
    (00:08:27) Key Figures Behind Embraer's Rise
    (00:09:33) Embraer's Breakthrough in the U.S. Market
    (00:10:25) The Evolution of Embraer's Business Model
    (00:11:07) Comparing Embraer with Boeing and Airbus
    (00:12:00) Dynamics of the Regional Jet Market
    (00:15:44) The Future of Regional Aviation and Embraer's Role
    (00:19:24) Exploring Embraer's Defense and Military Segment
    (00:24:03) Embraer's Potential Amidst Boeing's Challenges
    (00:28:48) The Intricacies of Jet Manufacturing and Sales
    (00:30:15) Embraer's Competitive Landscape and Challenges
    (00:31:03) Navigating Currency Volatility and Hedging Strategies
    (00:32:01) Defense Sector Dynamics and Geopolitical Influences
    (00:33:33) Aftermarket Revenue and Replacement Cycles
    (00:37:05) Embraer's Strategic Aspirations and Boeing Partnership Dynamics
    (00:43:58) Bombardier's Shift and Market Dynamics
    (00:46:56) Assessing Risks and Opportunities for Embraer
    (00:49:05) Key Lessons from Embraer
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    • 49 min
    Boeing (REPLAY): Turbulent Times

    Boeing (REPLAY): Turbulent Times

    Today we’re replaying our Breakdown on Boeing, hosted by Zack Fuss. We recorded the episode in September before the mid-air blowout on a Boeing 737 operated by Alaska Airlines and the subsequent management changes, but it serves as a useful overview of the commercial airline industry writ large, how we got here, and what the future might look like. It also pairs well with the breakdown we’re releasing next about Brazilian-based airplane manufacturer Embraer. So look out for that, and in the meantime, enjoy this episode on Boeing.

    For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.
    -----
    Business Breakdowns is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Business Breakdowns, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.

    Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.

    Follow us on Twitter: @JoinColossus | @patrick_oshag | @jspujji | @zbfuss | @ReustleMatt | @domcooke

    Show Notes
    (00:03:08) - (First question) - An introduction to the aerospace industry and Boeing's role in it
    (00:06:11) - Boeing's business model today
    (00:10:22) - How the aerospace industry settled into a duopoly
    (00:13:00) - Costs associated with airplane manufacturing
    (00:14:32) - The life expectancy of an aircraft
    (00:15:16) - Dealing with the supply coordination problem
    (00:18:09) - The Boeing and McDonnell Douglas merger
    (00:21:21) - Problems Boeing has faced over the past five years
    (00:21:14) - How leadership turnover has permeated through Boeing
    (00:28:33) - Competitive headwinds Boeing can face
    (00:33:40) - How Boeing will grow in the aerospace industry
    (00:38:09) - Boeing's eVTOL strategy
    (00:42:12) - What is impacting the profitability of the business
    (00:44:08) - The biggest challenge facing the aerospace industry
    (00:45:27) - Lessons learned from studying Boeing
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 47 min
    Duolingo: Free Speech - [Business Breakdowns, EP.157]

    Duolingo: Free Speech - [Business Breakdowns, EP.157]

    This is Matt Reustle. Today we are breaking down Duolingo, the learning app built on language learning that is increasingly expanding into other territories like math and music. Founder Luis von Ahn is constantly looking for ways to make this accessible and free to use for people all around the world while simultaneously finding reasonable ways to monetize and create a profitable, longer-term business. Duolingo has adjusted its business model over time to ensure that this can happen.
    My guest is Thaiha Nguyen from Baillie Gifford. You should assume that most of our guests own the businesses that they are covering on business breakdowns, but it's important to mention here that Thaiha works for Baillie Gifford's Positive Change Strategy. They invest not only for returns but also for the impact on society. 
    Thaiha and I cover the fascinating founder story behind Duolingo, how Duolingo has succeeded in a largely offline market, how they've approached monetization, and how they plan to expand from here. Please enjoy this breakdown of Duolingo.


    Interested in hiring from the Colossus Community? Click here.
    For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.
    -----
    This episode is brought to you by Public. A High-Yield Cash Account is a secondary brokerage account with Public Investing, member FINRA/SIPC. Funds from this account are automatically deposited into partner banks where they earn a variable interest and are eligible for FDIC insurance. Neither Public Investing nor any of its affiliates is a bank. US only. Learn more at public.com/disclosures/high-yield-account.

    This episode is brought to you by Tegus, the only investment research platform built for fundamental investors. Whether you’re trying to get up to speed on a new market or keep tabs on a portfolio company, Tegus is the end-to-end investment research platform you need. With Tegus, you can quickly understand a company's business model, drivers, benchmarks, and management quality. To monitor an entire market, download our pre-built financial models — or update your own with the latest data using Tegus’ new Excel Add-In. Tegus gives you all of this and more, all bundled into a single software license. Find out why 95% of the top 20 global private equity firms are Tegus customers. Learn more and get your free trial at tegus.com/patrick.
    -----
    Business Breakdowns is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Business Breakdowns, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.
    Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.
    Follow us on Twitter: @JoinColossus | @patrick_oshag | @zbfuss | @ReustleMatt | @domcooke
    Editing and post-production work for this episode was provided by The Podcast Consultant (https://thepodcastconsultant.com).

    Show Notes
    (00:00:00) Welcome to Business Breakdowns
    (00:05:09) The Fascinating Founder Story of Duolingo
    (00:11:42) Exploring the Language Learning Market and Duolingo's Impact
    (00:25:26) The Evolution From Translation Service to EdTech Leader
    (00:28:04) How Duolingo Became a Freemium Giant
    (00:32:17) Understanding Duolingo's Diverse User Base
    (00:34:03) Why People Choose Paid Subscriptions Over Free Options
    (00:36:54) Duolingo's Certification and Assessment Business
    (00:39:57) Leveraging AI for Personalized Learning Experiences
    (00:43:06) Exploring Duolingo's Financial Health and Growth Strategy
    (00:46:37) The Future of Educational Offerings Beyond Language Learning
    (00:48:20) Duolingo in the Classroom
    (00:54:50) Navigating the Risks and Opportunities in EdTech
    (00:57:58) Key Lessons from Duolingo
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    • 59 min
    Mitsubishi Corporation: A Japanese Trading Company

    Mitsubishi Corporation: A Japanese Trading Company

    This is Zack Fuss. Today we are breaking down the Mitsubishi Corporation. In Japan, the business model of a trading company is prominent. The big five trading companies caught the attention of global investors in 2020, when Berkshire Hathaway disclosed a major stake in all of them: Mitsubishi, Mitsui, Itochu, Marubeni, and Sumitomo. Today's Berkshire stake is nearly 10%.  
    I'm joined by Krishna Mohanraj, a Portfolio Manager at Diamond Hill Capital Management. In this episode, we discuss how the rich history of trading houses is steeped in Japanese culture and how each differs from one another. Krishna helps unravel the evolution of stakeholder priorities and how capital allocation policies have changed in the Japanese capital markets. Please enjoy this Breakdown of Mitsubishi Corporation. 

    Interested in hiring from the Colossus Community? Click here.

    For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.
    -----
    This episode is brought to you by Tegus, the only investment research platform built for the investor. With traditional research vendors, the diligence process is slow, fragmented, and expensive. That leaves investors competing on how well they can aggregate data — not on their unique ability to analyze insights and make great investment decisions. Tegus offers an end-to-end platform with all the data you need to get up to speed on a company or market: up-to-the-minute financials, customizable models, management and culture checks, and, of course, our vast and growing library of expert call transcripts. Tegus is changing the world of expert research. Learn more and get your free trial at tegus.com/patrick.
    -----
    Business Breakdowns is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Business Breakdowns, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.
    Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.
    Follow us on Twitter: @JoinColossus | @patrick_oshag | @zbfuss | @ReustleMatt | @domcooke
    Editing and post-production work for this episode was provided by The Podcast Consultant (https://thepodcastconsultant.com).

    Show Notes
    (00:00:00) Welcome to Business Breakdowns
    (00:03:12) First Question - Understanding Mitsubishi's Global Impact and Business Model
    (00:07:12) The Evolution of Mitsubishi and Japanese Trading Houses
    (00:12:12) Mitsubishi's Investment Case and Market Position
    (00:15:02) Comparing Mitsubishi with Other Japanese Trading Houses
    (00:18:22) The Secret to Mitsubishi's Success and Global Network
    (00:21:16) The Relevance of Berkshire’s Investment in the Japanese Trading Houses
    (00:26:45) A Cultural Shift in the Orientation of Japanese Businesses Towards Their Shareholders 
    (00:28:35) Valuing Mitsubishi
    (00:31:05) Reinvesting in The Business And Reallocating Capital
    (00:33:02) Mitsubishi’s Unique Management Dynamic
    (00:38:54) Advantages of the Mitsubishi Group
    (00:42:44) Lessons Learned from Mitsubishi
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 44 min
    Intuitive Surgical: Robotic Precision

    Intuitive Surgical: Robotic Precision

    Today, we are breaking down a giant in the medical device space, Intuitive Surgical. Intuitive creates robotic products to assist minimally invasive surgeries. Its Da Vinci system is a pioneer in this area as it increases the efficiency & accuracy of surgery and reduces the burden on the surgeons themselves.
    To break down Intuitive, I'm joined by Joseph Thomas, equity analyst at the global asset manager, Ninety One. Joe walks us through the history of surgical procedures, the emergence of robotics & surgery, and how Intuitive has emerged as the winner in this space. Please enjoy this breakdown on Intuitive Surgical.

    Interested in hiring from the Colossus Community? Click here.
    For the full show notes, transcript, and links to the best content to learn more, check out the episode page here.
    -----
    This episode is brought to you by Tegus, the only investment research platform built for the investor. With traditional research vendors, the diligence process is slow, fragmented, and expensive. That leaves investors competing on how well they can aggregate data — not on their unique ability to analyze insights and make great investment decisions. Tegus offers an end-to-end platform with all the data you need to get up to speed on a company or market: up-to-the-minute financials, customizable models, management and culture checks, and, of course, our vast and growing library of expert call transcripts. Tegus is changing the world of expert research. Learn more and get your free trial at tegus.com/patrick.
    -----
    Business Breakdowns is a property of Colossus, LLC. For more episodes of Business Breakdowns, visit joincolossus.com/episodes.
    Stay up to date on all our podcasts by signing up to Colossus Weekly, our quick dive every Sunday highlighting the top business and investing concepts from our podcasts and the best of what we read that week. Sign up here.
    Follow us on Twitter: @JoinColossus | @patrick_oshag | @zbfuss | @ReustleMatt | @domcooke
    Editing and post-production work for this episode was provided by The Podcast Consultant (https://thepodcastconsultant.com).

    Show Notes
    (00:00:00) Welcome to Business Breakdowns
    (00:02:55) First Question - The Evolution of Surgery: From Ancient Practices to Robot-Assisted
    (00:08:14) Revolutionizing Surgery With the Da Vinci System
    (00:11:23) Early Challenges and Regulatory Hurdles for Robotic Surgery
    (00:14:59) The Future of Robotic Surgery
    (00:22:40) Exploring the Business Model of Intuitive Surgical
    (00:29:26) The Fifth Generation of the Da Vinci System
    (00:37:26) Intuitive Surgical's Financial Overview
    (00:41:16) Depreciation, Secondary Markets, and Economic Factors
    (00:45:52) R&D Investments and Digital Innovations
    (00:49:04) Navigating the Competitive Landscape
    (00:55:04) Global Expansion and Market Opportunities
    (00:57:27) Identifying Risks and Disruptions
    (01:01:37) Key Lessons from Intuitive Surgical
    Learn more about your ad choices. Visit megaphone.fm/adchoices

    • 1 hr 5 min

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